Pentagon says ‘thousands’ of ISIS-K prisoners were released by Taliban

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby was cornered by Fox News reporter Jennifer Griffin on Friday who asked him point-blank how many ISIS-K prisoners were released from prisons in Afghanistan by the Taliban.

He stated that “thousands” of ISIS-K prisoners were set free from two different prisons during the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan. This happened in the days leading up to the bombing on Thursday of the Kabul airport that killed 13 U.S. service members.

“How many ISIS-K prisoners were left at Bagram and are believed to have been released from the prison there, and why weren’t they removed before the U.S. pulled out to someplace like GITMO?” Griffin asked Kirby, referring to the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base.

“Well, I don’t know the exact number. Clearly, it’s in the thousands when you consider both prisons because both of them were taken over by the Taliban and emptied. But I couldn’t give you a precise figure,” Kirby waffled.

“And as for emptying out, remember we were turning things over to Afghan national security forces, that was part of the retrograde process, was to turn over these responsibilities,” Kirby deflected. “And so they did have responsibility for those prisons and the bases at which those prisons were located. And of course, as the Taliban advanced, we didn’t see the level of resistance by the Afghans to hold some territory, some bases, and unfortunately, those were the bases the Afghans didn’t hold.”

“But all of those responsibilities were turned over in accordance with the retrograde plan back frame,” claimed Kirby who deftly avoided any responsibility for the attack on Thursday.

U.S. troops suddenly and inexplicably abandoned Bagram Air Base overnight on July 2. Prisoners were videoed as they were set free by the Taliban on August 15. They waved them out of the gates as the prisoners cheered and blessed them for it.

ISIS-K is a splinter faction of the global Islamic State of Iraq (ISIS) network. Reports are coming out of Afghanistan that they have claimed responsibility for the horrific suicide bombing attack in Kabul on Thursday.

Former ambassador-at-large for counterterrorism under former President Trump, Nathan Sales, told Fox News that the prisoners almost certainly were behind the bombing.

Although it’s too early to say for sure yet, he contends it’s quite possible that ISIS-K was able to conduct the bombing quickly with the assistance of the prisoners who were freed after the Taliban took over the country and the U.S. and NATO troops withdrew.

“I think one of the things we’ll need to look at is the extent to which escaped ISIS prisoners had a role in planning and carrying out this attack,” Sales remarked.

Hours after the attack occurred, President Biden vowed to hunt down those responsible and make them pay and that we would complete our evacuation operations. Many have severe doubts about those claims and consider Biden’s late speech the epitome of weakness.

Meanwhile, the first American victims of that attack in Kabul have been named according to the Daily Mail. They are Navy medic Max Sovia and Marine Rylee McCallum. The other 11 have not been publicly identified yet.

The Pentagon is now saying there was only one suicide bomber in the attack on Thursday, not two, as they originally claimed.

Army General Hank Taylor stated at a briefing on Friday, “I can confirm that we do not believe there was a second explosion at or near the Baron hotel. It was one suicide bomber. In the confusion of very dynamic events can cause information to get confused”

Inconceivably, he didn’t know whether the bomb that detonated was a car bomb or a terrorist in a vest. Both were described on the ground by Washington officials. John Kirby was among those who confirmed both of the blasts.

As the names of those killed in Afghanistan start to be released, anger and grief are growing among Americans and they want answers from President Biden and the military.

Kirby’s platitudes and shifting of blame are not cutting it:


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