April 2020 was a month Mohammad had yearned for. It was when he was set to fly to the U.S. with his wife and son to start a new life.
The Afghan had spent years painstakingly proving he was eligible for a special visa through his work as an interpreter with the U.S. Marine Corps in Afghanistan, and that he posed no danger to the American homeland.
"It took almost five years," he says with a sigh, speaking by phone from Afghanistan. He asks that NPR not use his full name because of threats from the Taliban against him.