The 13 American service members killed in a terrorist bombing in Kabul on Thursday died in gruesome violence. With one exception, they were 9/11 babies, born within a few years of the terrorist attacks that drew the United States into a military conflict that lasted four presidents and the lives of these 11 men and two women, Washington Post reported on Sunday.
According to media reports, 12 of the 13 US service members killed in the August 26 Kabul airport bombing were “9/11 babies.”
On August 28, the Pentagon released their names and biographies. The victims, mostly between the ages of 20 and 25, were born within a few years of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, which prompted the United States to launch two lengthy and painful wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to the Xinhua news agency.
“They never knew a US that was not at war, never lived in the world before the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration, a country without ID checks in office buildings, metal detectors at schools, shoes X-rayed at the airport,” said a Washington Post report on Sunday.
“Our generation of Marines has been listening to the Iraq/Afghan vets tell their war stories for years,” Mallory Harrison, a friend of 23-year-old Marine Corps Sgt. Nicole L. Gee, one of the 13 dead, wrote on Facebook.
“It’s easy for that war and those stories to sound like something so distant — something that you feel like you’re never going to experience since you joined the Marine Corps during peacetime,” Harrison said.
IS-K, a radical affiliate of the Islamic State active in Afghanistan, claimed responsibility for the deadly attack outside Kabul airport, which also claimed the lives of 170 Afghans.
The remains of the 13 troops were returned to the United States on Sunday.
President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Joint Chiefs Chairman Mark Milley, and other senior military officials attended a solemn ceremony where the remains arrived at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware state.
The President and First Lady met privately with the victims’ families before witnessing flag-draped cases containing the remains of 11 service members being loaded into vans.
At the request of their families, the remains of two other fallen US service members were brought home privately.
According to the White House, approximately 111,900 people have left Afghanistan since August 14.
The US withdrawal from Afghanistan is scheduled to be completed by August 31, according to President Joe Biden’s deadline.