Vandals Rip Flags Memorializing 13 U.S. Troops Killed in Kabul Attack

President Joe Biden salutes during the dignified transfer of the remains of U.S. Military service members who were killed by a suicide bombing at the Hamid Karzai International Airport, at Dover Air Force Base in Dover, Del., August 29, 2021. (Tom Brenner/Reuters)

Vandals recently ripped flags displayed in California in honor of the 13 U.S. service members killed last month in an ISIS-K attack outside of the Kabul airport in Afghanistan, police said Tuesday. 

The Riverside Police Department said a citizen discovered that the memorial of 13 American flags and one Marine Corps flag on the fence of the Ivy Street overpass above the 91 Freeway had been damaged on Monday and promptly called authorities. 

After photos of the vandalized memorial were posted online by the “What is Going on in Riverside County” group, police thanked the group for “bringing this crime to our attention.”

Police said “it’s obvious the flags were intentionally damaged.”

A pair of citizens helped to remove the damaged flags which were then given to local Boy Scout Troop 703 to be retired, police said. Authorities added that, as of Tuesday, they did not have a suspect description.

The memorial was erected to honor the eleven Marines, one Navy sailor, and one Army soldier who were killed in the August 26 suicide bombing. Ten of the slain service members were based out of California’s Camp Pendleton.

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