Drone strike that killed children to go unpunished – report — Analysis
The Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said that no US military member involved in the Kabul drone strikes, which killed 10 civilians, including seven children, during Afghanistan’s withdrawal from Afghanistan would be punished.
The US Air Force’s inspector general investigated the August 29 drone strike and found no violations of law, but left the decision to discipline, reprimand or demote the people involved to the commanding officers. According to the New York Times, Austin agreed with Central Command Chief General Kenneth F. McKenzie, Jr., and Commander U.S. special operations Richard D. Clarke, that punishment wasn’t necessary.
Lieutenant General Sami Dia Said, who led the Air Force’s IG probe, told reporters at the Pentagon last month that just because he didn’t call anyone out over the botched strike, it didn’t mean the command would not.
“They can de-credential folks. They have the ability to retrain people. They have the ability to fire employees. They can do a variety of different things,”Said.
Official comments from the Pentagon on this issue have not been made. The Times quoted an anonymous senior official who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Two weeks later, the US military claimed that it was still in effect “righteous”• Killed a “facilitator”Islamic State Khorasan, a terrorist organization that claimed responsibility for the Kabul Airport suicide bombing that left nearly 200 dead including 13 US soldiers. McKenzie, however, acknowledged that the strike was taking place on September 17. “was a mistake”We offered our condolences and sympathies to Zemari Ahmadi, a charity worker in Afghanistan, and the nine other victims, which included seven children.
Ahmadi worked for Nutrition & Education International, a California-based charity. His white Toyota wasn’t carrying explosives but rather water, and the children flocked to greet him when he returned to work.
“How can our military wrongly take the lives of 10 precious Afghan people, and hold no one accountable in any way?”Steven Kwon (founder and president of the NEI) told the Times that he considered the decision a “decision”. “shocking.”
Kwon claimed that he’d been “beseeching”For months, the US government has been trying to get the NEI staff out of Afghanistan. However, this apparently has not occurred yet. John Kirby, a Pentagon spokesperson, stated last week that military personnel have been evacuated from Afghanistan. “trying to get the necessary information in place” to both conduct the evacuations and send condolence payments to Ahmadi’s surviving relatives.