Afghan interpreter who helped rescue Joe Biden in 2008 arrives in Arizona after evacuation mission

ITV News US Correspondent Emma Murphy tells the extraordinary story of Aman Khalili

When Aman Khalili signed up to work with the US military in Afghanistan he knew the risk he was taking. It made him a target for the Taliban and placed him and his family at risk.

But that risk seemed worth the gamble to provide for that family, safe in knowledge the US would be a long term presence in his country.

The work, kept secret from many, did provide for the family and in the years that followed he stayed in touch with those he’d served with as his children grew, his girls went to school and Afghanistan enjoyed a semblance of stability.

Aman Khalili said the Taliban would've killed them if they hadn't left

Aman Khalili's former job as an interpreter for the US military put him at risk under Taliban rule Credit: Supplied

He stopped looking over his shoulder, the fear he might be found out abated.

All that changed in August when President Joe Biden announced the end of America’s longest war. Normality was gone, the troops were gone, the Taliban was back.

Overnight the fear returned, the risk was back and magnified.

Aman and his family's last photo at home in Afghanistan Credit: Supplied

His girls, who had enjoyed their freedoms, were confined to the house. Their education at an end, their hopes, their futures in jeopardy. So too their lives and their father’s.

He was now one of the hunted. They had no choice but to try and flee.

Aman's daughters Zulfar Khalili and Faryal Khalili speak about how their lives have changed

Every Afghan who worked with coalition forces knew their peril.

Aman Khalili faced a greater threat. He had been the interpreter who was part of the mission to rescue then-Senator Joe Biden when snow forced his helicopter to the ground on a remote pass.

Aman Khalili had been the interpreter on the mission to rescue then-Senator Joe Biden. Credit: ITV News

That made the father-of-five a trophy for the Taliban.

He turned to the men he had served with, their motto “Leave No Man Behind” was about to be tested.

Aman's children are united with the families in the US who helped save them. Credit: ITV News

What followed was a plea from Afghanistan to Arizona, secret calls, code names, covert journeys and a 144 hour dash through Taliban territory to the Pakistan border, a flight to Qatar and finally a flight to the United States.

Ex-US National Guardsman Brian Genthe said the family 'finally have that freedom and the chance of safer life'

Seven months on the whole family are safe and beginning a new life.

Those Aman served with stood true to their pledge to leave no man behind.