This week’s Photo of the Week was taken by Senior Airman Taylor Crul at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul Afghanistan. The shot shows the tail of a C-17 Globemaster transport plane as qualified evacuees are loaded for a very crowded flight to one of a few processing centers at American bases outside of the war zone.
Ealier this week more than a dozen American military personnel were killed and dozens injured when a coordinated attack by at least one person wearing an explosive vest caused a massive explosion near one of the main arrival gates at the airport, gates which every one of the people in this photo had passed through earlier in the week.
While the details of the American withdrawal from Afghanistan have been cause for much disagreement about American policy and about the war itself, with many calling the withdrawal an avoidable disaster, one thing is clear, and we want to take this moment to point that out.
The men and women of the Air Force along with other American personnel and our allies, have done the impossible day in and day out, as they have worked to evacuate as many people from the country as possible. They have, in fact, flown nearly 10,000 people a day out of Afghanistan from an airport with a single runway. The point is, the work that our armed forces have done under the most challenging conditions imaginable is nothing short of heroic.