Michigan lawmakers react to attack on US forces in Kabul

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Smoke rises from explosion outside the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021. The explosion went off outside Kabul’s airport, where thousands of people have flocked as they try to flee the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. Officials offered no casualty count, but a witness said several people appeared to have been killed or wounded Thursday. (AP Photo/Wali Sabawoon)

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Michigan-based lawmakers have begun to release statements on the violence in Kabul on Thursday.

Two suicide bombers and gunmen attacked crowds of Afghans flocking to Kabul’s airport Thursday, transforming a scene of desperation into one of horror in the waning days of an airlift for those fleeing the Taliban takeover. At least 13 people were killed and 15 wounded, Russian officials said.

Several Marines were killed and a number of other American military were wounded, a U.S. official said. It was not clear if those deaths were included in the Russian toll.

One of the bombers struck people standing knee-deep in a wastewater canal under the sweltering sun, throwing bodies into the fetid water. Those who moments earlier had hoped to get on flights out could be seen carrying the wounded to ambulances in a daze, their own clothes darkened with blood.

A U.S. official said the complex attack was believed to have been carried out by the Islamic State group. The IS affiliate in Afghanistan is far more radical than the Taliban, who recently took control of the country in a lightning blitz and condemned the attack.

“Earlier today, terrorists killed 12 American service members, at least 60 Afghans, and injured hundreds at the airport in Kabul. 

“Our men and women in uniform represent the best of us. They put their lives on the line to keep us safe and help those in danger. This devastating loss leaves a hole in all of our hearts. Every Michigander is thinking of our fallen and wounded service members and their families. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and honor the memory of the extraordinary Americans we lost today.  

“We are praying for the safety of those still on the ground in Afghanistan continuing the mission.”   

-Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Tragically, today marks the deadliest day for American troops in Afghanistan since 2011. This unfolding nightmare speaks volumes about President Biden’s lack of leadership and weakness as Commander in Chief.

Let’s be clear: The Biden Administration’s incompetent withdrawal put our troops in an entirely preventable, and now, perilous position. All confidence is lost in the President and his top advisors. In light of this abject failure, Secretary Austin and General Milley should offer their resignations.

Moreover, the August 31 exit date must be pulled. There can be no arbitrary deadlines when Americans and our allies are still stranded behind enemy lines.

President Biden needs to forcefully assure the Taliban that he will use every available resource to get every American out of Afghanistan. Stop letting the Taliban dictate U.S policy and bring our people home. May God bless our troops during this time of turmoil.

-Congressman Tim Walberg

Heartbroken to hear the news of U.S. service members who lost their lives in Kabul. I’m praying for their families, those who were injured and the safety of our service members & Afghan allies.

I’m closely monitoring the situation. My office and I will continue to assist Americans and those who’ve helped our country in Afghanistan.

Debbie Stabenow

“As I continue to closely monitor developments in Afghanistan, I am mourning the loss of brave U.S. servicemembers and innocent civilians as a result of the horrifying terrorist attack in Kabul. I’m praying for the recovery of our servicemembers and Afghan allies who were injured. 

“We owe a huge debt of gratitude to the courageous, heroic U.S. servicemembers, diplomats, personnel, and allies who continue to carry out their mission in the face of enormous danger.”

Senator Gary Peters

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