The Biden administration announced on Tuesday that Afghanistan's extremist Islamic Taliban government allegedly killed the ISIS-K leader behind the 2021 Kabul airport attack, which resulted in the deaths of 13 U.S. soldiers and nearly 200 Afghan nationals.
According to the Biden administration, a recent ground offensive led by the Taliban in Afghanistan resulted in the death of the ISIS-K leader responsible for orchestrating the devastating 2021 attack on Kabul airport, the New York Times and Washington Post reported.
The attack claimed the lives of 13 U.S. soldiers and almost 200 Afghan nationals. Administration officials, however, refused to disclose the leader's identity.
The Washington Post revealed that neither the U.S. nor the Taliban was aware of the leader's death until days after the offensive. U.S. officials expressed "high confidence" in the leader's demise, citing intelligence likely based on "informants, electronic intercepts, or information from allied spy services," according to the Times.
However, the report noted that officials provided "no evidence to support that conclusion or other details about his purported death."
Following the announcement, the administration began contacting the families of U.S. military personnel killed in the Kabul airport attack. Darin Hoover, the father of Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Taylor Hoover, expressed frustration over the lack of information provided during the call. He urged the administration to take responsibility for the situation, emphasizing that such incidents cannot happen again.
In another interview, Hoover reiterated that the truth is all that he and his son's mother seek, but they feel they are not getting it.
Last month, Marine Sgt. Tyler Vargas-Andrews, who served during the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, emotionally recounted his experience of witnessing 13 U.S. troops being killed by a suicide bomber in front of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. Vargas-Andrews, a Marine sniper at the time, and his team were deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan, in August 2021 to oversee the final weeks of the U.S. withdrawal.
On August 22, either ISIS or Taliban militants carried out a "test run" for a terror attack using an improvised explosive device (IED). On August 26, Vargas-Andrews' team received a description of the suspected terrorist bomber and later identified a man near the Abbey gate who fit the description and appeared nervous as he kept glancing at the Marines stationed near the gate.
Vargas-Andrews revealed that his team sought permission twice to eliminate the suspected terrorist but were denied. The battalion commander, who came to Abbey Gate to see the suspect himself, responded that he was unsure if they had the authority to take out the suspect.
The commander promised to find out, but the team received no update, and the individual eventually disappeared. Vargas-Andrews stated, "To this day, we believe he was the suicide bomber."