This is what the Pentagon knew before the Kabul bombing

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History will judge us by those final images.

~ Colin Kahl, the Pentagon’s top policy official

THEY LEFT THE GATE OPEN

Biden’s ‘Extraordinary Success’ in Kabul Omitted This Detail

The Pentagon met 24 hours before the explosion outside Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul to discuss the deteriorating condition in Afghanistan, Politico reports.

Speaking from a secure video conference room in the Pentagon, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin instructed more than a dozen of the department’s top leaders around the world to make preparations for an imminent “mass casualty event,” according to classified detailed notes of the gathering shared with Politico.

During the meeting, Gen. Mark Milley, the chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned of “significant” intelligence indicating that the Islamic State’s Afghanistan affiliate, ISIS-K, was planning a “complex attack.”

Politico said they have classified notes from three separate conference calls as the disaster unfolded and they prepared for the attack that eventually killed 13 service members and 169 Afghans, including dozens of children.

Austin said, “I don’t believe people get the incredible amount of risk on the ground.”

The commanders in Kabul had warned that the Abbey Gate was the “highest risk” for an attack. Later Wednesday afternoon, which was 12:30 a.m. on Thursday in Kabul, the commanders had said they intended to close the Abbey Gate that afternoon.

However, the gate was kept open longer to allow British allies to continue evacuating their personnel, Politico reported.

At about 6 p.m. Kabul time Thursday, a suicide bomber detonated his explosive vest, killing nearly 200 people, including 13 U.S. troops as they were processing people to come through the Abbey Gate.

Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby didn’t address the incompetence, Instead, he condemned Politico for publishing the report with the following statement:

“This story is based on the unlawful disclosure of classified information and internal deliberations of a sensitive nature.  As soon as we became aware of the material divulged to the reporter, we engaged Politico at the highest levels to prevent the publication of information that would put our troops and our operations at the airport at greater risk. We condemn the unlawful disclosure of classified information and oppose the publication of a story based on it while a dangerous operation is ongoing,”

When a reporter asked Kirby about the Politico report during a press conference Monday morning, he shot back, “I’m absolutely not going to speak to a press story that was informed by the unlawful disclosure of classified information and sensitive deliberations here at the Pentagon.”

Of course, he won’t if he has no reasonable explanation for the egregious error of leaving the Gate opened.

 

 

 


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