by Debra Heine

 

Nine members of a family of Afghan allies, including six children, were killed in a US drone strike targeting ISIS terrorists in a residential neighborhood of Kabul, Sunday, according to multiple reports.

The drone strike was reportedly targeting suicide bombers who were planning an attack on Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport (HKIA).

A local journalist told CNN that the people killed were his brother Zamaray (40 years old), Naseer (30), Zameer (20), Faisal (10), Farzad (9), Armin (4), Benyamin (3), Ayat (2) and Sumaya (2).

Weeping, the brother told the journalist that they were “an ordinary family.”

“We are not ISIS or Daesh and this was a family home — where my brothers lived with their families,” he cried.

Afghan journalist Muslim Shirzad was the first to report the news about the U.S. drone attack on the innocent family on Twitter.

 

According to witnesses, a rocket strike “blew up two cars parked outside a residential building near the Hamid Karzai airport to the north of Afghanistan’s capital.” The U.S. believed the vehicles were filled with explosives, and were going to be used in an imminent” attack.

The strike on the ISIS vehicles is “believed to have caused a secondary blast, killing and wounding several civilians.”

CNN obtained images of the aftermath of the strike. A US official confirmed the location in Kabul’s Khaje Bughra neighborhood. US Central Command said earlier they were assessing the possibilities of civilian casualties.

A man named Ahad, who said he was a neighbor of the family, told CNN: “All the neighbors tried to help and brought water to put out the fire and I saw that there were 5 or 6 people dead. The father of the family and another young boy and there were two children. They were dead. They were in pieces. There were [also] two wounded.”

Ahad told CNN he had witnessed the airstrike at around 5 p.m. local time as he walked towards his home. He said he heard the noise of the rocket and a loud bang, and ducked for cover, before trying to help rescue his neighbors. Ahad told CNN that two other people were wounded in the attack.

The US military said in its statement “significant secondary explosions from the vehicle indicated the presence of a substantial amount of explosive material,” the spokesperson said.

A local journalist who visited the scene soon after the airstrike told CNN that “whatever material was in the car, I don’t know. The car was in a very bad state, just a skeleton of the car was left.”

The journalist — who is not being named for security reasons — was told by family members of the deceased that there were two cars parked at the home: One was a Corona and the other was a Camry.

The journalist said he’d been told that one of the cars contained one of the fathers and his three children getting ready to go to a family event.

“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,” said US CENTCOM spokesman Capt. Bill Urban. “We are confident we successfully hit the target. Significant secondary explosions from the vehicle indicated the presence of a substantial amount of explosive material.”

Sunday afternoon, Urban acknowledged that there were reports of civilian casualties following the drone strike.

“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,” Urban said in a statement. “We would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life,” he added.

Marine Corps General Kenneth McKenzie, commander of U.S. Central Command, told reporters last week that Islamic State militants would likely continue attacking as the evacuations proceeded.

“We believe it is their desire to continue those attacks and we expect those attacks to continue,” McKenzie told reporters at the Pentagon. He said the U.S. was monitoring an “extremely active threat stream against the airfield.”

“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,” an American in touch with both special ops teams and the active military in Afghanistan told reporter Emily Miller. McKenzie oversees military operations in the region,

The Pentagon claimed on Saturday that U.S. military forces conducted a drone strike in Nangarhar Province in eastern Afghanistan, allegedly killing one ISIS militant, and wounding another.

The strike was purportedly in retaliation against the terrorists who claimed responsibility for the attack outside Kabul’s airport.

“We know of zero civilian casualties,” Army Maj. Gen. William “Hank” Taylor said. “Without specifying any future plans, I will say that we will continue to have the ability to defend ourselves and to leverage over-the-horizon capability to conduct counterterrorism operations as needed.”

The Pentagon has not released the names of the terrorists who were allegedly killed.

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Debra Heine is a reporter at American Greatness.
Photo “Kabul AFGHANISTAN 1961” by manhhai. CC BY 2.0.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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