Aug 27, 2021 - Politics & Policy
First lady Jill Biden speaks after Afghanistan attack
First lady Jill Biden released her first statement on the U.S. withdrawing from Afghanistan and Thursday's attack in Kabul Friday afternoon.
Why it matters: In her role as first lady, Biden has prioritized military-focused initiatives. She said the attack in Kabul, which killed at least 13 U.S. troops, "left us with the stinging reality of the ultimate sacrifice you are willing to make."
- "Afghanistan has been woven through your life ... You watched loved ones board a plane to Kabul or Kandahar, and wondered if you’d ever see them again. Too many of you lost a piece of your heart forever there. This mission is personal to you, and you have shouldered its enormous weight," she said.
- "We’ve seen service members sharing water and food with Afghan children waiting at the Kabul airport. We’ve seen military families welcoming Afghan refugees home to the United States with donations and friendship."
"As our mission in Afghanistan comes to an end, you may be experiencing many emotions. Know that my heart is with you as you navigate what comes next for your family, your community, and our nation. You are not alone."
The big picture: Biden, whose stepsons served in the U.S. military, has long supported military initiatives, dating back to her days as second lady.
- She announced the next chapter of the Joining Forces initiative, which supports U.S. military families, in April.
- The relaunch of the program focuses on military family employment and entrepreneurship and intends to provide child care for families in need.
- Biden and former-first lady Michelle Obama led the Joining Forces initiative during the Obama administration.