The father of Marine Lance Cpl. Jared Schmitz said Tuesday that SD cards were “wiped clean” of footage of the area in Afghanistan where a bomb killed 13 servicemembers, and accused the Biden administration of a cover-up.
“Every time I try to get video footage from the Abbey Gate, they tell me that the cameras were malfunctioning, we asked for the footage from the drone, these million-dollar drones are suddenly not working correctly when it comes to video feed,” Mark Schmitz told Fox News host Martha MacCallum. Schmitz’s comments came a day after families of the fallen servicemen ripped the Biden administration over the attack at a Monday forum held by Republican Rep. Darryl Issa of California. (RELATED: ‘No Responsibility, No Accountability’: Father Of Fallen Marine Blasts Biden After Anniversary Of Kabul Bombing)
“It’s just a runaround, and so, of course, we went to the GoPros, the cell phones these guys had, the boots on the ground over there,” Schmitz continued. “The SD cards are wiped clean, not even returned. What are you covering up?”
Schmitz’s son was killed in the Aug. 26, 2021, bombing as American forces were evacuating from Kabul, while ten civilians were killed in a retaliatory drone strike. The botched evacuation led to calls for Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley to resign.
A State Department after-action report released on June 30 said that Secretary of State Antony Blinken had no idea who was in charge of the department’s efforts during the operation, hampering its efforts. The investigation into the chaotic withdrawal began in October 2021, with over 150 former or current officials in the State Department.
“I was told to my face, he died on impact. That’s not true. The only reason that I know this is because witnesses told me the truth,” Kelly Barnett, the mother of Marine Staff Sgt. Darin Taylor Hoover, told the forum, accusing the Biden administration of telling her to “shut up.”
Barnett related that her son survived, and after he had tied a tourniquet around his leg and passed out ammo to fellow servicemembers, based on what witnesses told her, Fox News reported.
“It’s plain and simple there’s obviously shady business going on,” Schmitz said. “It’s time for that to stop.”
The Department of Defense did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.
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