Panic at Kabul Airport Imperils Evacuation Flights; At Least Two Afghans Dead

By Tara Copp

“I am the President of the United States and the buck stops with me,” Biden said about withdrawing the troops after the departure mission is complete.

Defense One—U.S. warns that any attacks on evacuation will meet “a forceful response,” but how long will the Taliban hold off?

The U.S. military temporarily froze all flights out of Hamid Karzai International Airport on Monday as anger and desperation rose among Afghans during the Taliban takeover. The decision came after a crowd chased a departing C-17 airlifter down the runway and unknown gunmen twice shot at U.S. troops at the airport.

Airlift operations on the military side of the airport resumed by late Monday, allowing several additional military aircraft to land, though the civilian side remained closed.

“There are no flights coming or going, military or civilian, and this is because of large crowds that are still on the tarmac, on the southern side of the field, the civilian side of the field,” Kirby said before U.S. troops restored enough order for planes to operate.

So far, the Taliban has not attacked the airport, even as their forces entered other government facilities in the capital city. The head of U.S. Central Command Marine Corps Gen. Frank McKenzie has been in… read more>


Tara Copp, Senior Pentagon reporter, Defense One



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