Kabul: Second Drone Strike Brings Conflicting Reports
Kabul: Second Drone Strike Brings Conflicting Reports
On Sunday, CENTCOM (United States Central Command) announced that another drone strike in Kabul had resulted in the elimination of an “imminent threat” to the airport.
As reports of a potential attack by ISIS-K on the airport had made the rounds over the weekend (and after the first drone strike last Friday), the goal of the military was obviously to take out whatever threats they could learn about.
The strike in a crowded neighborhood northwest of the airport set off “significant secondary explosions,” which indicated a “substantial amount of explosive material” inside the vehicle, Capt. Bill Urban, spokesman for U.S. Central Command, said in a statement. While the target was initially described as a vehicle-born improvised explosive device (IED), an official clarified that the explosives may have been worn by one or more bombers inside, rather than planted on the vehicle itself.”
The U.S. military acted to intervene and prevent another event like the one that occurred Thursday when a suicide bomb killed 13 U.S. service members and 170 Afghan citizens.”
“U.S. military forces conducted a self-defense unmanned over-the-horizon airstrike today on a vehicle in Kabul, eliminating an imminent ISIS-K threat to Hamad Karzai International Airport,” Urban said. “We are confident we successfully hit the target.”
Urban added that the military is assessing the possibility of civilian casualties.”
And then the reports began to come in from major media sources. The Taliban, it seems, was claiming that there were civilian casualties. CNN reported that nine members of one family had been killed in a building next to the target vehicle. The AP reported the same thing, but introduced the possibility that the “secondary explosions,” not the drone strike itself, may have caused the civilian casualties. Regardless, the possibility of civilians having died caused a lot of questions – and a certain amount of panic – by CENTCOM, who issued a statement late on Sunday night.
We are aware of reports of civilian casualties following our strike on a vehicle in Kabul today.”
We are still assessing the results of this strike, which we know disrupted an imminent ISIS-K threat to the airport. We know that there were substantial and powerful subsequent explosions resulting from the destruction of the vehicle, indicating a large amount of explosive material inside that may have caused additional casualties. It is unclear what may have happened, and we are investigating further.”
We would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life.”
The reaction by CENTCOM raised a few eyebrows. What on earth is going on here, and why do we not know what is going on?
There are quite a few questions that need to be answered about what is going on in Kabul right now, and how this target was chosen for a drone strike. First of all, who gave CENTCOM this information on where to find an ISIS-K threat that had a car loaded and ready with explosives? Do we still have any eyes and ears on the ground that trust us, given the circumstances? OR, did the Taliban tell CENTCOM who to hit? And for the love of God, WHY would we trust them when they say, “hey, drone THAT car”???
Did it ever occur to anyone making decisions that the Taliban- you know the people we were at war with two weeks ago because they’re brutal jihadists- may lead us to strike targets we don’t want to kill and whose deaths might harm us politically and advantage them. https://t.co/5lIyvhjoXI
— Rebeccah Heinrichs (@RLHeinrichs) August 29, 2021
I have no problem believing that ISIS-K would have zero issue using children as human shields. However, there are highly speculative rumors on the ground that the target that was hit was not an ISIS-K member at all, but an Afghan ally and his family.
"General McKenzie was involved in the drone strike hitting the interpreter. There is no way this is mere incompetence on the part of military command."
– American in touch with both special ops teams and the active military in Afghanistan
— Emily Miller (@emilymiller) August 30, 2021
If this is true, and the Taliban (because who else could it be?) got the United States to do its own dirty work and take out one of our own former interpreters (after planting rumors of a second imminent ISIS-K attack?), because we know THEY HAVE BIOMETRIC DATA AND LISTS OF OUR ALLIES, then God help us all.
Also, we know the press is using local sources on the ground to get information while they still can. How much do they really trust these sources, knowing that if they are discovered giving information unflattering to the Taliban, their lives are forfeit? The Taliban isn’t exactly being shy about the pressure they are putting on the local media that is left.
The bottom line is that we might never know what actually happened after the drone strike in Kabul on Sunday. Neither the military or the press have enough reliable information on the ground to independently confirm anything. And if it was – again, this is complete speculation – a colossal set-up by the Taliban, do you really think the Pentagon will admit it? Unless, of course, the Taliban decide to brag about it later.
We now have less than 48 hours before the withdrawl is “finished.” After that, we should all be worried about what horrors will follow.