Military

Taliban Tries to Assassinate Mattis During Unscheduled Visit to Afghanistan

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The Taliban hasn’t given up. The terrorist organization launched a coordinated attack on an airport in Afghanistan Wednesday. They launched between 40 to 45 rockets and rocket-propelled grenades. Their target was US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. The attack missed Mattis, who had just left the airport.

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Five civilians were wounded. The rockets landed on the tarmac, near the civilian area of the Kabul International Airport.

The Taliban claimed responsibility. Their spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, tweeted confirmation that Mattis’ plane had been the target of the attack. Though his visit had not been announced, Mattis had been visible in India, leading many to suspect he might make other, unscheduled stops.

Not wanting to be outdone, the Islamic State has also claimed responsibility. Perhaps they joined forces for the too-little, too-late attempt at striking a blow to the Trump administration.

Mattis, no stranger to the Taliban or to their improvised form of attack, called the incident a “criminal act by terrorists.” He went on to add that this is proof that the Taliban’s attempts to be taken seriously are ludicrous. This, he said, is a “classic definition of what the Taliban are up to here now.”

The airport, as a precaution, has been shut down and evacuated. Flights have been canceled.

Mattis is in the area to show America’s determination to resolve what has become a difficult situation in Afghanistan. The 16-year-old war is a black-eye for America, politically. President Trump has resolved to renew efforts in the country, and is calling on NATO partners to help thwart the Taliban and the so-called Islamic State. For the full view of Mattis, watch this video below.

For more on the rocket attack, check out this video.