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Suicide Bomber Detonates Inside Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan

Veteran News
Veteran News
November 13, 2016
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A man detonated a suicide vest at a “fun run” in Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan on Saturday morning, killing two American service members, two American contractors and wounding 17 other soldiers. 16 of the service members wounded were American; the last was Polish.The Taliban quickly claimed responsibility for the blast, which occurred around 5:30 a.m. local time as people gathered for a post-Veterans Day fun run.“I want to express my sincere condolences to the families of the fallen, and I want to reassure the loved ones of those injured that they are getting the best possible care. Force protection is always a top priority for us in Afghanistan, and we will investigate this tragedy to determine any steps we can take to improve it,” said Defense Secretary Ash Carter in a statement.[caption id="attachment_8817" align="aligncenter" width="366"]


Map of Bagram Air Base location. Source: NY Times[/caption]The victims have not been identified.The Associated Press quoted a Taliban spokesman as saying that the attack had been planned for four months.


Bagram Air Base houses 14,000, 60% of whom are contractors

Bagram Air Base is one of only a few bases currently used by the United States in Afghanistan after years of drawing down efforts aimed at transitioning security to the Afghan government.There is an immense amount of force protection at the base, which includes retinal scans, fortified towers, concertina wire and hesco barriers. addition to this, standard operating procedures in Afghanistan often include badging of local nationals, frisking, searching vehicles with explosive-detection dogs and multiple layers entry and exit control points.Many parts of the base are sequestered as well, requiring a specific ID or badge to access, even if one has access to the base at large.As with all such bases, it is likely that hundreds, if not thousands, of local nationals work there, along with many Afghan National Army, Police and Border units, some of which have experienced Taliban infiltration in the past.In 2012, so-called “green on blue” attacks accounted for 15% of all United States casualties in Afghanistan.It is unclear exactly how the explosives, the vest and the person made it into the fun run area at this time.

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