GB News fury as viewers ‘let down’ by host blasting Pen Farthing’s evacuation

Afghanistan: Harwood 'appalled' that pets were rescued

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Tom Harwood was on hand to host the DePiero and Halligan show on GB News and on the agenda was Farthing’s return to Britain. The founder of animal rescue charity Nowzad made headlines last week when he refused to leave Afghanistan without almost 200 stray cats and dogs and the staff who had helped to look after the pets. On Sunday morning, Farthing and his animals landed at Heathrow Airport without the staff he had wanted to evacuate to Britain with him. But this was a Norwegian flight which had been arranged under operation Ark, meaning the planes the British government were sending to the Taliban threshold were not affected. Discussing the matter, Harwood explained how he thought human life should have been prioritised but those watching at home weren’t happy with the comments and took to social media to voice their rage.

Harwood said of the evacuation process: “Of course you would go to the ends of the earth for your pets but I think there is generally a hierarchy in terms of how we should view the sanctity of life.

“I think humans come first in that hierarchy. I have been quite frankly appalled by some of the comments I’ve seen on social media.

“About how Afghans should be left in the hands of the murderous Islamist terrorists that are the Taliban and we should fill planes full of cats and dogs.

“I think the priorities have been so out of whack and it does not look good for global Britain to have facilitated a plane taking cats and dogs out of an airport at a time where humans were grabbing onto the landing gears of aircraft.

“They were falling hundreds of metres from the sky to their deaths in their desperate attempts to leave and we’re going with pets.”

“I don’t think it’s edifying,” he concluded and viewers took to Twitter to voice their fury at the presenter’s opinions.

One wrote on the social media platform: “Typical of GB News to ratchet up this issue into a divisive choice between good [versus] evil.

“‘Pets [versus] People’ is pathetic. It’s just such a puerile headline and distracts from the real issue which is how we all got into this shambles to start with.”

Another replied: “Agree. It’s the opposite of what I had hoped from GB News. I feel let down and I am watching less and less.

“Also how does a misleading item like this fill every programme on their schedules for days,” they continued.

Quite frankly appalled

Tom Harwood

A third remarked: “Harwood doing the government’s propaganda. Maybe ask why the evacuation was started so late,?

“Why half-empty planes flew? Why did we airlift cars? Why did the Embassy leave allies details for the Taliban to find? The animal thing is a repetitive non-story now,” they added.

“He’s talking about things that happened long before any animals were taken out. @PenFarthing offered the empty seats up but the government told him they weren’t needed,” a fourth stated.

“This distraction will not cover up the government’s abandonment of the people of Afghanistan,” they explained.

The former Marine spoke on Monday’s edition of Good Morning Britain, in his first television appearance since being evacuated.

Farthing explained how if he’d stayed in Afghanistan, he would have been putting his staff in greater danger.

“While the British government had given them the correct paperwork because the Americans had controlled the airport, Joe Biden had changed the airport on who could actually enter, it overruled the paperwork we had been given by the British.”

There were several empty seats on the Norwegian plane Farthing was on but he was unable to get his staff on with him.

Because he was the last person to enter Kabul airport, his staff weren’t allowed to join him as British and American military personnel had stopped the process needed to check civilian’s documentation.

Farthing explained the animals had not taken seats needed for people as they had to go into a cargo hold where civilians are not allowed to go.

The charity founder responded to the critics by saying: “They don’t understand that situation on the ground.

“I’m upset that people were left behind, but I couldn’t do anything different. There was nothing we could do.”

The DePiero and Halligan show airs weekdays at 12pm on GB News.

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