On August 26, 13 U.S. military personnel were killed in a terrorist bomb attack outside the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Initial reports from Pentagon officials showed that 11 marines and one naval medic were among those killed. Another service member died hours later, according to the Associated Press. AP reported that at least 18 military personnel were injured and authorities warned that more casualties could occur.
This death marks the first US combat-related death in Afghanistan since February 2020.
The terrorist group ISIS has argued for the attack, boasting of the suicide bombers “managing all security fortresses” set up by the US military and the Taliban.
“We were able to reach a large gathering of translators and collaborators with the US military, after which he detonated an explosive belt,” an ISIS terrorist said in a statement. The attackers claimed that they were able to enter within 5 meters of the US military at the east gate of the airport. Another explosion struck a nearby hotel, according to the Pentagon.
President Joe Biden said at the White House on August 26 that the United States would attack ISIS in retaliation for the bombing.
“Know this to those who have carried out this attack, and who want to harm America. We do not forgive. Remember. We will hunt you down and let you pay. I will protect our interests and our people by all means at my command, “Biden said in a speech to the country about the attack.
The president instructed military personnel to plan to attack ISIS facilities and fighters.
“We respond to our time with power and accuracy, wherever we choose, at the moment we choose,” he said.
“These ISIS terrorists won’t win. America won’t be threatened.”
Biden spoke about seven hours after the explosion at a US-owned airport in Kabul. He and government officials dimmed after the attack, except for a brief explanation from a US general, urging some key Republicans to call for his resignation.
Biden described himself and his first lady, Jill Biden, as “outraged” and “broken heart” for the loss, adding that the family who lost their loved one was heartbroken.
He explained how his deceased son, Beau Biden, died of cancer after serving in the army, saying that such a loss “feels like being sucked into a black hole in the middle of his chest.” rice field.
In a statement, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin expressed his “deep condolences” to the loved ones and teammates of those killed in Kabul.
“Terrorists died at the very moment these troops tried to save the lives of others. We mourn their loss. We heal their wounds. And we Assist their families in being most likely to be devastating sorrow, but do not discourage immediate challenges. ” “Especially now, doing less than that will disgrace the purpose and sacrifice these men and women at the expense of our country and the people of Afghanistan.”
The bombing took place late August 26, local time, at or near Abbey Gate on the eastern side of the airport. One bomb exploded at the gate before at least one bomb exploded near the Baron Hotel, a short distance from the gate.
The photo shows the injured and bloody people, with dozens of Afghans among the injured and murderers.
The total number of casualties was not immediately known.
Other world leaders warned that the situation at the airport was dangerous and volatile, with the United States planning to withdraw the rest of the army in the next few days.
French President Emmanuel Macron told reporters during his visit to Ireland that “the next time will remain very dangerous in Kabul and the airport.”
ISIS has released a photo of a man claiming to have committed one of the suicide bombings, explaining that the explosion is targeting the US military and its “spies.”
It also threatened additional attacks.
The exact situation of the attack is under investigation, but a preliminary understanding of the first explosion is a suicide bomber who reached the gate before triggering the bomb.
The US military is at the gate to scrutinize those who are trying to pass through. The review includes checking for bombs and other weapons.
“There is no substitute for young men or women, young American men or women. We are standing there and searching for that person before we allow them,” Mackenzie said.
Before the first bomb exploded, 104,000 people had passed through the gate to Kabul International Airport. Many of them were Afghans fleeing the country after assisting the US military during decades of war.
The Taliban have scrutinized people at their checkpoints before letting them pass, but sometimes their search is not exhaustive.
When the Taliban took over the country, the United States began managing the airport. This is the only territory controlled by the US military prior to its scheduled withdrawal on August 31st.
“Currently, our focus is really moving forward, preventing another attack of this kind from happening, because, as you know, patterns are usually multiple attacks,” McKenzie said. I am.
The Taliban, which hijacked Afghanistan in mid-July, was working with the US military on a large-scale evacuation in the country. There are no signs that the Taliban were involved in or caused the attack, Biden said, reiterating comments by General Kenneth “Frank” Mackenzie, head of the United States Central Command.
A Taliban spokesman said the explosion was triggered “to destroy equipment” by the U.S. military and expressed concern that Americans would withdraw by the August 31 deadline set by Biden.
But the president said the plan is, for now, to remain until the deadline.
The president said that people, including Americans, still need help to escape the country, adding: I think they are right. I think it’s correct. “
Zachary Stieber contributed to this report