Issa, Gold Star Parents Pressing for Answers on Abbey Gate Bombing; One Family Says Bullet Was Found Inside Victim

Rep. Darrel Issa (R-CA) speaks at a meeting in Escondido, CA, on August 7, 2023. CREDIT: Screenshot

Parents of U.S. servicemembers killed in a suicide bombing nearly two years ago at the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan spoke at a town hall meeting Monday in California, held by Rep. Darrel Issa (R-CA). Their remarks were gut-wrenching and infuriating, but brought back into the public consciousness the price they pay every single day as, like Christy Shamblin said, they are unable to make any new memories with their children.


After the parents spoke, Issa closed the meeting “for today” and referenced some disturbing questions families have asked him to look into in the aftermath of the attack. As one mother said, they’ve waited two years for answers and shown patience and complied with requests by the Pentagon to let them complete their investigation in a systematic way, yet those questions have not been answered.

Issa said:

This brings to a close the statements for today of the families of the fallen. I said for today, because their story cannot end today. In 1792 George Washington empaneled the first Congressional investigation of a failed battle. It is not new for there to be military mistakes. It is not new. But it is, in fact, tradition that investigations don’t end until every question has been answered. Even though we spent a little over an hour here today with these families, we could have spent two or three or four hours and not heard all the questions they have.

Others have told us of things like a bullet found inside their loved one when in fact we were told it was a bomb, and they have evidence. Others have asked, “I got my son’s phone back, but the SIM card containing those pictures, those selfies, had been removed. Can I have it back?” There are many, many questions unspoken today that have been asked that we will get to the bottom of.

Why would the Pentagon need the SIM card from the phone of one of the victims? It’s understandable that they’d want access to any photos taken that day to see if there are clues, but they can access those without retaining the SIM card. There are numerous ways they can get access to those photos or even text messages and emails sent and received; there’s no reason to keep the SIM.


It would be quite problematic for the Pentagon if bullets were found inside the bodies of those killed. On February 4, 2022 General Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., Commander, U.S. Central Command, and other officials held a briefing announcing the results of his investigation into the attack. During his introduction, McKenzie said:

At this point I want to acknowledge that the investigation differs from what we initially believed on the day of the attack. At the time, the best information we had in the immediate aftermath of the attack indicated that it was a complex attack by both a suicide bomber and ISIS-K gunmen.

We now know that the explosively fired ball bearings caused wounds that looked like gunshots, and when combined with a small number of warning shots, that led many to assume that a complex attack had occurred.

Brigadier General Lance Curtis, the lead investigator, said:

Today, we’re going to show you why this was not a complex attack. It was a single blast, and it did not have a follow-on attack. There were a series of crossing fires to the front of the servicemembers on the ground that created the illusion that there was a complex attack, but there absolutely was not. There were no gunshot wounds. We have universal agreement between the Armed Forces Medical Examiner’s Office, and also, the medical providers on the ground. There were absolutely no gunshot wounds.


So that’s the official line, and it’s likely that the Pentagon dismisses what Issa said by claiming that what the family thinks was a bullet is really a ball bearing. But given that the Pentagon report came out 18 months ago, meaning that Issa has undoubtedly read it, and knowing that Issa wouldn’t want to look ignorant by claiming a ball bearing in a dead servicemember is a bullet, it’s doubtful that Issa would make such an assertion publicly unless the family had good evidence that what was found was indeed a bullet.

View Issa’s remarks below.


Join the conversation as a VIP Member

Trending on RedState Videos