After 13 U.S. service members were killed and 15 injured in the Aug. 26 suicide bombing at Kabul airport, rumors started circulating on social media about how many troops died in Afghanistan under former President Donald Trump versus President Joe Biden.
Evan Kilgore, a conservative from Dayton, Ohio, with 11,400 Instagram followers, posted on the site, “There wasn’t a SINGLE American casualty in Afghanistan the last year and a half of the Trump admin. The Taliban FEARED President Trump and KNEW he would annihilate them, if they breached their peaceful exit negotiation. The blood is on Biden’s hands.”
That isn't correct. The websites FactCheck.org and CheckYourFact.com were both quick to report the information was false. Both organizations work with Facebook to debunk misinformation shared on social media. Kilgore’s post has since been blocked by Instagram and labeled as false information.
How many service members were killed in Afghanistan?
So, how many service members were killed under Trump? If you’re only looking at the past year and a half, from July 2019 to January 2021, then the total is 23 service members killed in the war in Afghanistan, according to data from the Defense Casualty Analysis System.
During the entire Trump presidency, from January 2017 until January 2021, a total of 63 U.S. military service members lost their lives in the war in Afghanistan, reports the Defense Casualty Analysis System.
About 2,400 U.S. soldiers have died in the Afghan war.
A total of 2,400 U.S. soldiers have died in Afghanistan in the 20 years that the war has been going on. The war started on October 7, 2001, soon after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. George W. Bush was the U.S. President at the time.
In 2019, 23 service members were killed, and 11 were killed in 2020. No soldiers were killed in 2021 until the Aug. 26 suicide bomb attack, which was the deadliest day in Afghanistan for the U.S. military in a decade.
The violence came while U.S. troops withdraw from Afghanistan and the Taliban takes over control of the country’s government. President Biden has held steady on his deadline of Aug. 31 to have troops out of the war-torn country.
Trump first negotiated the troop withdrawal.
The agreement with the Taliban to withdraw U.S. troops was originally negotiated by the Trump administration last year. Trump set May 1, 2021, as the deadline for troop withdrawal, but Biden delayed the date when he got into office.
President Biden paid his respects to the fallen soldiers.
On Aug-29, President Biden paid his respects to the fallen service members from the Kabul airport attack and met privately with their family members.
“The 13 service members that we lost were heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice in service of our highest American ideals and while saving the lives of others. Our sacred obligation to the families of these heroes will last forever,” Biden said in a tweet.