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Multiple Marines And Several Afghans Brutally Killed In A Series of Explosions Outside of Kabul’s Airport

Early this morning I started getting messages via the signal app from people on the ground in Kabul. Several were telling me that the situation was getting more and more tense. That atmosphere resulted in several gates of the airport being welded shut just days before the withdrawal was due to be completed. Hours later, more reports were coming through that there was firefights and a series of explosions. Suddenly, I stopped getting messages. Like usual, that lack of communication meant something was wrong. Very wrong.

When you’re forward deployed to a combat zone, communication channels are shutdown when someone is killed in action. We do this for several reasons but one of the main reasons is that the US wants to notify next-of-kin before any news is released into the world. The families have a right to know first.

So far, four Marines are among those who died this morning at the hands of a reportedly ISIS-connected suicide bomber. The images are brutal. The aftermath is brutal. The response from the American administration should be equally as brutal.

Over the course of the last two weeks, we’ve seen examples of the greatest displays of humanity from our troops on the ground. We’ve seen them rescuing babies, women, and our fighting partners. These young people were risking their lives based on a promise that we made to our Afghan allies over the course of 2 decades. Now, families will mourn and wonder the point of these deaths. The will join a chorus of 2,442 other families with these same questions. Fellow service members are currently etching the names of heroes on their heart’s walls. Today will mark the first day of a new season of mourning-a season that won’t turn and change with the ebbs and flows of the earth’s orbit. It’s a perpetual season. It’s a season that is one of darkness and lurks behind every corner for the remainder of your life.

In a time that our bravest are doing unimaginable good, that good inevitably begets unimaginable pain. That’s the burden of the troop on the ground. Thats a burden that those in charge often cannot fathom. How can you? Until you’ve zipped a body bag with your friend inside, it’s impossible to know those feelings. It’s a feeling that too many have felt over the last 20 years and it’s gutting that the butterfly effect of this last stand in Afghanistan will carry the winds of regret and heartache until the last boot is off Afghan soil and then for decades more.

A nation mourns. Again. 

Fair winds and following seas, Marines. Semper Fi