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Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Biden on Saturday said that he spoke with his national security team about the two ISIS-K targets who were killed during Friday night's airstrike.

What they're saying: "We discussed the strike that U.S. forces took last night against the terrorist group ISIS-K in Afghanistan," Biden said. "I said we would go after the group responsible for the attack on our troops and innocent civilians in Kabul, and we have."

  • "I can confirm, two high profile targets were killed and one was wounded …We will continue to have the ability to defend ourselves … as needed," Army Maj. Gen. William “Hank” Taylor said Saturday.
  • "The fact that two of these individuals are no longer walking on the face of the Earth, that’s a good thing," Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby added. "We believe that we hit valid targets — bad guys who can do bad things and can plan bad missions."
  • Kirby confirmed that the two targets were involved in the attack on the Kabul airport.
  • Biden on Thursday said he has directed the Pentagon to develop plans to "strike" ISIS-K "assets, leadership and facilities" in response to the Kabul airport bombing, which killed as many as 170 people, in addition to 13 U.S. service members.

State of play: Taylor explained that the two "high profile" targets were "planners and facilitators" for ISIS-K.

  • Kirby said it "absolutely" impacted ISIS-K because "they have lost some capability to plan and conduct missions."
  • The Pentagon will not be releasing the names of the targets.

Of note: Defense officials said the evacuation mission will finish by Aug. 31, "nothing has changed about the timeline," according to Kirby.

  • He added that U.S. forces have begun "retrograding" from the Kabul airport.

Go deeper

Sep 19, 2021 - World

U.S. drone strike victims' families in Afghanistan seek compensation

A relative of Ezmarai Ahmadi, who was killed by a U.S. drone strike, looks at the wreckage of a vehicle Saturday that was damaged in last month's strike in the Kwaja Burga neighbourhood of Kabul. Photo: Hoshang Hashimi AFP via Getty Images

Relatives of 10 Afghans killed by a U.S. drone strike in Kabul last month said Saturday they want to see punishment and compensation over the deaths.

Driving the news: The relatives said it's "good news" that the U.S. had "officially admitted" that "they had attacked innocents" in the Aug. 29 strike that killed Zamarai Ahmadi, an aid worker with a U.S.-based group, and nine family members, but they still need "justice," per AFP.

House Democrats strip Iron Dome money from government funding bill

Photographer: Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images

House Democrats on Tuesday stripped $1 billion for Israel's Iron Dome defense system from its short-term government funding bill after backlash from progressives, people familiar with the decision tell Axios.

Why it matters: There has never a situation where military aid for Israel was held up because of objections from members of Congress. While the funding will likely get a vote in a future defense bill, the clash underscores the deep divisions within the Democratic party over Israel.

Oversight Board calls for more Facebook transparency

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Facebook Oversight Board on Tuesday called on the social media giant to "commit to transparency" in the wake of a Wall Street Journal report last week that millions of high-profile users get special treatment by content moderators.

Why it matters: Although initially funded by Facebook, the Oversight Board operates independently as a kind of Supreme Court for the platform. The company has agreed to obey its rulings on specific content disputes, but the board's broader policy advice is strictly on a "recommendation" basis.