The sources remark that the Central Intelligence Agency informed officials about the children only seconds before the Hellfire drone missile hit Zemari Ahmadi's vehicle. Ahmadi and his three children – Faisal, Bin Yamin and Ayat – are among the 10 fatalities from the drone attack.
U.S. officials initially claimed that Ahmadi, an aid worker for an American group, was a terrorist and an "imminent threat" to the country.
However, the Biden administration has walked back on this claim and insists that Ahmadi is innocent. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of the U.S. Central Command (USCC), told reporters during a press briefing: "I am now convinced that as many as 10 civilians, including up to seven children, were tragically killed in that strike."
McKenzie continues: "We now assess that it is unlikely that the vehicle and those who died were associated with [ISIS-Khorasan] or a direct threat to U.S. forces. The strike was taken in the earnest belief that it would prevent an imminent threat to our forces and the evacuees at the airport, but it was a mistake and I offer my sincere apology."
Other defense officials have followed suit. Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley has issued a statement describing the strike as a "horrible tragedy of war." He adds: "It's heart-wrenching and we are committed to being fully transparent about this incident." Meanwhile, a statement from Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin offers apologies toward the incident and calls Ahmadi an innocent victim. (Related: NYT confirms Biden murdered innocent family in Kabul drone strike.)
U.S. officials initially said that the Aug. 29 drone strike targeted a suicide bomber with connections to ISIS-K. However, an internal investigation however revealed that innocent civilians – including Ahmadi and his children – were killed by the strike instead of terrorists.
U.S. Navy Capt. Bill Urban, the spokesperson for the USCC, said in an earlier statement: "We are confident we successfully hit the target. Significant secondary explosions from the vehicle indicated the presence of a substantial amount of explosive material." He continued: "We are assessing the possibilities of civilian casualties, though we have no indications at this time. We remain vigilant for potential future threats."
ISIS-K is believed to be behind the Aug. 26 suicide bombing at the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul. The Pentagon said the incident has claimed the life of 13 U.S. service members and wounded 18 more. An estimated 169 Afghans were also been reported dead following the bombing. The attack occurred amidst evacuation efforts by the U.S. following the Taliban's takeover of the country. (Related: Jeffrey Prather talks about warfare, Afghanistan and false flag attacks – Brighteon.TV.)
Zemari's brother Emal meanwhile believes apologies from Washington are insufficient. While he survived the Aug. 29 attack, his three-year-old daughter Malika is among the 10 casualties of the drone strike. "That is not enough for us to say sorry. The [U.S.] should find the person who did this," he says. The Ahmadis seek financial compensation and relocation to any country – including the U.S. – that is deemed safe.
While Emal acknowledges the apologies and the recognition of his family members who died as innocent victims, he says these actions will not bring them back. He also expresses frustration over U.S. officials refusing to reach out to his family despite repeated requests.
Furthermore, Emal also calls on the U.S. to investigate the ones who fired the drone and hold them responsible. "The [U.S.] can see from everywhere. They can see that there were innocent children near … and in the car. Whoever did this should be punished," he adds.
Terrorism.news has more articles about ISIS-K attacks in Afghanistan.