(Headline USA) A U.S. Marine who survived the deadly bombing in Afghanistan’s Kabul airport during the U.S. military’s withdrawal from the region told lawmakers this week that he was ordered not to kill a suspected terrorist, who he believes was responsible for later killing 13 U.S. service members.
Sgt. Tyler Vargas-Andrews testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday and recalled how his team tracked a man who officials believed was a suicide bomber “throughout the entirety” of the day leading up to the deadly explosion, reported the Gateway Pundit. The man was an “anomaly in the crowd,” Vargas-Andrews said. He “handed out small cards to the crowd periodically,” and at one point appeared to be coached by an older man.
“Over the communication network, we passed that there was a potential threat and an idea attack imminent,” Vargas-Andrews said. “This was as serious as it could get.”
Vargas-Andrews said he requested permission to kill the suspected terrorist, but the Marines were told not to shoot because “leadership did not have the engagement authority for us.”
Afterwards, “psychological operations individuals came to our tower … and confirmed the suspect met the suicide bomber description,” the Marine said. But despite the overwhelming evidence of the suspect’s intentions, the battalion was unable to take action.
“Eventually the individual disappeared. To this day we believe he was a suicide bomber,” Vargas-Andrews said.
Vargas-Andrews ended up losing an arm and a leg after the suicide bomber detonated explosives near the Kabul airport. At least 45 other troops were injured in the explosion, and 13 died.
“We were ignored. Our expertise was disregarded,” he said. “No one was held accountable for our safety.”
The Marine went on to add that no one in the upper levels of government, including in the NCIS and FBI, cared about his report.
“The withdrawal was a catastrophe, in my opinion, and there was an inexcusable lack of accountability and negligence,” he said. “The 11 Marines, one sailor and one soldier that were murdered that day have not been answered for.”