US: Mike Spann, a Marine turned CIA officer, felt a duty to go to Afghanistan in the wake of the September 11, 2001, attacks.
In one of his last phone calls home to check on his children, he told his father he was hopeful they would gather information to locate the mastermind of the attacks, Osama bin Laden, his father recalled.
Spann was killed days later, on November 25, 2001, during a prisoner uprising at the fortress where he had been questioning extremists.
The 32-year-old CIA paramilitary officer from Winfield, Alabama, was the first of 2,448 American service members to be killed in combat in Afghanistan.
Spann’s father said he was disgusted by images of America’s chaotic withdrawal on Monday showing people, desperate to escape the Taliban takeover, clinging to the side of a departing U.S. military jet.
“It makes me sick to my stomach when I see it. It’s disheartening. It’s shameful, I think. I think it’s shameful that we would do this,” Johnny Spann said.
Spann said he is not opposed to Americans leaving Afghanistan but disagrees with the timing and how it was done. With the Taliban takeover, his mind goes immediately to the Afghans who helped his son and other Americans.In the years since his son’s death, Johnny Spann has become obsessed with learning the details — tracking down the autopsy report, photos and speaking to people who worked with his son in his last days. He is also sharply critical of President Joe Biden’s withdrawal decision.Much of the work his son and others did has been undone, he said, but that doesn’t make their contributions meaningless. – IANS