Samuel Case, FISM News
Several weeks back the U.S. launched drone strikes in retaliation to the deadly suicide attacks at the Kabul airport in Afghanistan. The Biden administration said the first strike successfully took out two high profile ISIS-K agents, the identities of whom remain undisclosed. A follow-up strike occurred two days later, which the military originally said took out a suspected suicide bomber, but speculation soon began to swirl that it had instead killed a man who worked for a US aid group, along with nine family members.
The Pentagon confirmed on Thursday that the strike did in fact kill Zemerai Ahmadi, an aid worker, and his family. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie Jr., commander of U.S. Central Command, made the announcement, saying “it was a mistake,” and that he takes full responsibility “for the strike and its tragic outcome.” The General said seven children were killed in the attack.
“I offer my profound condolences to the family and friends of those who were killed. This strike was taken in the earnest belief that it would prevent an imminent threat to our forces,” McKenzie said.
Chairman for the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley also addressed the mistake, calling it “a horrible tragedy of war,” and that “we are committed to being fully transparent about this incident.” Milley is set to appear before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Sept. 28.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin released a statement mourning the mistake. “We now know that there was no connection between Mr. Ahmadi and ISIS-Khorasan, that his activities on that day were completely harmless and not at all related to the imminent threat we believed we faced, and that Mr. Ahmadi was just as innocent a victim as were the others tragically killed,” Austin said.