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Pics: New evidence uncovered in Afghanistan suicide bombing investigation

Women and children outside the Taliban-controlled checkpoint near the Abbey Gate in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
April 15, 2024

A supplemental review of the 2021 Abbey Gate suicide bombing, which occurred during the chaotic Afghanistan withdrawal by President Joe Biden’s administration, claims that the U.S. Marine sniper team stationed at the Abbey Gate in Kabul did not identify the suicide bomber prior to the fatal terrorist attack.

U.S. Central Command’s supplemental review findings noted that the Abbey Gate suicide bombing that killed thirteen U.S. service members and 170 Afghan civilians outside the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on August 26, 2021, was “not preventable at the tactical level.”

The supplemental review, which was released on Monday, was published after U.S. Army Central conducted 50 eyewitness interviews, including 12 interviews with service members who had not been interviewed as part of the military’s initial investigation into the suicide bombing incident.

“Over the past two years, some service members have claimed that they had the bomber in their sights and they could have prevented the attack,” a supplemental review team member told reporters, according to ABC News. “We now know that is not correct.”

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The supplemental review determined, “The terrorist attack at Abbey Gate was not preventable at the tactical level without degrading the mission to maximize the number of evacuees. Leaders at Abbey Gate were present, engaged, and made sound tactical decisions. The suicide bomber was not previously identified in the crowd, nor was there an opportunity for service members to engage him prior to the attack on August 26, 2021.”

According to Fox News, the supplemental investigation was ordered by Gen. Erik Kurilla, the commander of U.S. Central Command, after Marine snipers claimed that the suicide bomber suspect had been previously identified by the sniper team and that the attack could have been prevented by taking out the bomber before the attack was carried out.

Fox News shared a screenshot provided by U.S. Central Command of the Marine unit’s sniper scope video stream, which showed a “bald man in black,” whom some of the Marines suggested was the suspect of the suicide bombing attack.

Fox News reported that the suspicious “bald man in black” was spotted by two of the Marine snipers at roughly 7 a.m. on August 26; however, the suicide bombing did not take place until 5:36 p.m. After comparing the faces of the “bald man in black” and Abdul Rahman al-Logari, who was identified by U.S. intelligence and revealed in an ISIS video as the suicide bomber, U.S. Central Command explained that the “bald man in black” was not al-Logari.