Wednesday night, two U.S military members were killed and another wounded during an operation in Afghanistan. According to the Pentagon, the incident was in the same area that we sent our most powerful weapons only two weeks ago.
The soldiers were conducting a raid with supporting airstrikes targeting the IS. Many fighters for the Islamic State have been in a long-term battle against Afghanistan security.
The area is the same place that the Pentagon sent the “mother of all bombs” on April 13th aiming for IS members hiding in tunnels and caves. The operation was a success. However, the fighting hasn’t stopped, and the Afghan military has yet to clear the area of the rest of their IS fighters.
Officials for the Defense Department are waiting to notify family members before releasing the names of those injured and killed.
Commander of U.S Forces in Afghanistan, General John W. Nicholson, says the fight against the Islamic State is necessary, but unfortunately, it doesn’t come without sacrifice. He sends his deepest sympathies to the family and friends of their fallen comrades on behalf of all U.S forces.
There have been little details given on the extent of the damage caused by the massive bomb, mostly because the area is still an active combat zone.
Gen. Nicholson didn’t get approval from Defense Secretary Jim Mattis or President Trump before making the decision to deploy the bomb. That action alone proves how much freedom military commanders have under Trump’s presidency.
However, that freedom is also bringing criticism from a few foreign policy officials. Even the Pentagon is saying the commanders didn’t consider the bigger picture with their actions.
The Pentagon hasn’t had an assessment done of the damage area from the bombing, which is routine after any major strikes in Irag and Syria. Afghanistan officials initially thought that only 36 IS members died, but they now say the number is shortly under 100.
Thursday, a US military official in Kabul says the bomb went off just North of Momand Bridge. The two soldiers died just South of that bridge.
Thursday, Afghanistan TV channels were showing the first footage of the bomb site. In the video, the tunnels the IS fighters were in look buried with around 15 bodies laying around.
The two US military members that died Wednesday brought the total amount of soldiers killed in Afghanistan this year to three. However, all service members died in Nangarhar Province. Mark R. De Alencar, Army Staff Sergeant and Green Beret, was killed April 8th in Achin after being under fire.