Kabul PUC

| September 1, 2023

Soldiers, Marines from Kabul evac awarded Presidential Unit Citation

By Davis Winkie
Editor’s note: This story was updated on Aug. 31, 2023 at 6:14 p.m. EST with additional information from Navy public affairs.

Two years ago, the fall of Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul, to the Taliban sparked one of the largest humanitarian operations in U.S. military history. In two weeks, troops helped evacuate more than 124,000 civilians through the airport there, despite a fragile truce with their former Taliban foes and a deadly suicide attack that killed a soldier, a Navy corpsman and 11 Marines.

The Defense Department announced Thursday that many of the soldiers and Marines who were there at the two-decade war’s close will receive the Presidential Unit Citation for their collective courage. The Presidential Unit Citation, the nation’s highest unit award, is presented for shared “exceptional heroism” roughly equivalent to that required for an individual award of the Distinguished Service Cross or Navy Cross.

Military Times

Category: Afghanistan, Big Pentagon, Disposable Warriors

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Absolutely earned, but does not wash the blood off Joe Biden’s hands. He killed those service members just as surely as if he triggered the bomb himself.



Spot On, SFC D.

Spot On.

President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neande

I was thinking similar, SFC D.
A pretty colored ribbon doesn’t cover the blood and deaths of the debacle that the Kabul retreat and surrender became.

And what about all the US citizens left behind?
Have they been returned to US soil?
I’m almost afraid to ask, it might be a burial plot.
And those still left over there?
What kind of hell is their life?

About those alleged US citizens; why were they there? Don’t they bear at least a teeny bit of responsibility for their own problems?

Personally, I suspect most of them were like the “US citizens” held by Iran. Three of them were born in Iran, with dual citizenship. One even had triple citizenship. They were Iranian when it was convenient, so they could go to Iran and make money, but now it is more convenient to be American citizens when they want out of Iran. I will bet that most of the “US citizens” “trapped” in A’stan were born in A’stan and chose to live in A’stan as long as it was convenient, but now find it more convenient to be American.


Sorry, but that’s nonsense. Biden did give an order to leave A’stan, but so did Trump, a year earlier. In March 2021 Biden reiterated that the US would withdraw, but postponed the final date by four months, to Sept. 11, 2021.

Was that not long enough for plans to be made by the folks in the chain of command responsible for implementing the order? Hells bells, given those six months even I could manage to evacuate 2500 soldiers and a few thousand diplomats, etc. without turning it into the complete clusterfumble it became.

Even a dumbass enlisted swine like me knows that in such an operation it is necessary to break contact with opposing forces, and you don’t do that by putting everything and everyone smack dab in the middle of four million (4,000,000) potential opposing forces, and actual opposing forces, i.e. the Taliban. From what I have read the military & diplomatic leadership recommended doing just that. That initial decision guaranteed that there would be problems.

And finally, if you insist that “the buck stops here”, in the White House, those 13 lives were a drop in the bucket compared to the thousands of lives lost in A’stan by Bush, Trump, and Obama.


Yes, Trump did give an order. A year earlier. Nobody’s questioning that. What’s being questioned is how Biden’s order was carried out.


Well, there’s no question that it was not Biden who failed to carry out that order. You need to look a little lower on the chain of command.


Success and failure starts with the leader. You’re responsible for everything your subordinates do under your command, win lose or draw.


Also known as “pass the buck”.


So the leader gets replaced or punished and the subordinate(s) who actually created the screwup get promoted. Great system. And in the case of A’stan, they also get a medal.

BlueCord Dad

Did he have to check his watch prior to making this decision?

Skivvy Stacker



Take a bite of the sam’itch, get the decorations.

‘Tis the way.

This in no way levels the scales insofar as the general cluster o’ transpired.

May His grace cover and heal all those torn in that conflict.

(and for the love of F, “Military” Times. In the Army writing style ‘soldier’ is a proper noun. eg “Dave has a loathing for the ‘Military’ Times”, “The Soldier has a loathing for the [Regent-owned state-mouthpiece]”.)


Proper “Army writing”: Soldier, Family, Values, etc., but corporals, privates, captains, etc.


Is there a recognition, award or ribbon for troops surviving one of the worst military and political leadership events in the history of the US?


In the army, it’s called the “gay pride ribbon.” That used to be a joke.


The brass don’t give out decorations to commemorate their own screwups.


A pretty ribbon for Warriors, an empty chair at the table for families, and billions of $s profit for the MIC. Sounds about right. FJB

Green Thumb


Handing out things to make himself look good.

Not that some were not deserved, but what the fuck?


Many people blame this on the President but forget that Trump gave the military 15 days to get out of Afghanistan in 2020 then reversed his decision. Biden did what Trump would probably have done.
The responsibility for fall of Kabul rests squarely on the shoulders of the corrupt Afghan military and police like Col Shawali and Sanwar Jan in Helmand who sold weapons to the Taliban and trafficked drugs while having their chai boys commit green on blue



What Trump may or may not have done is irrelevant. He was no longer commander-in-chief. What is relevant is what Biden actually did. There’s corruption in the Afghanistan government? Say it ain’t so!


The problem is…Republican. I think establishment politicians are all in the same league, but even so the Republicans must be blamed for everything. Not being a career politician, Trump must be held responsible for even more. Anything that started during Obama’s reign and up until now is completely Orange Man’s fault.

Trump might have had plans and maybe the same debacle would have unfolded. The fact is, though, that Trump was out of office, having been the first President to face two (completely unfounded) impeachments. Our current President and Commander-in-Chief was at the helm two years ago, giving the go-ahead to pull out of Bagram (a base I spent a few months on as RC-East LNO for my brigade), and rely on a much less secure airfield, depending on our enemies (Taliban) for security and trusting that we’d have a clean exit. You can blame Trump if you want for a war that was started under Bush’s watch and carried on through the former Vice President’s time in office, but you can’t put Biden’s failures on Trump’s resume.


“giving the go-ahead to pull out of Bagram”

From what I have read, that was the recommendation of the “experts”, military and diplomatic; the folks whose advice we have been told time and again to follow.


Someone needs to get the crayons out and educate me on why that was a good decision. I just don’t get it.


Just one more reason in a long list of reasons I don’t believe experts, in any field.
Except mathematics, of course. Challenge a mathematician to “prove it” and, by God, they do— formally and with footnotes and cites.


What Biden actually did is the same thing Trump did; give an order to his subordinates. The same order, in fact, just a different date.


And, in my humble opinion, an order that was at least ten years overdue.


And on this we absolutely agree.


Who was commander in chief during the Afghanistan “withdrawal”? Small hint: It wasn’t Trump’s name on the blame line.


Well, as Truman said, “The buck stops here”. True, but sometimes shit rolls uphill, not downhill.
“blame” is not synonymous with “cause”


Very true. I’m not necessarily sure they’re not inextricably linked in this case, however.


“ just a different date”.

And that makes all the difference in the world.


A Presidential Unit Citation (PUC)… The 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment was the only unit of the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) to have earned one some 20-1/2 years ago in Baghdad. I always took pride in those unit decorations more than my individual ones and was lucky enough to have been in units that earned the PUC, two Meritorious Unit Commendations, an Army Superior Unit Award, and two Joint Meritorious Unit Awards (JMUA). If I were still in, I wouldn’t wear the JMUAs, though, despite being awarded a Joint Service Achievement Medal, due to being assigned to the Army command and not the Joint Task Force (though I compiled and reviewed all the orders for both MDW and JTF-NCR).

Okay, so, those who were there for the final exit from Afghanistan two years ago have been awarded the PUC. Great! A permanent award of the highest unit decoration is something that those who made it home will be able to wear with pride, and rightfully so. But…

The 13 who were killed through a combination of political machinations and piss-poor decisions will never wear the PUC, though, and frankly no longer have the need for the prestige that high-level decorations bring. Unless they’re exhumed, those who were buried in uniform with Military Honors will rest eternally wearing what they earned while still serving, along with the Purple Heart and maybe a Bronze Star awarded for their sacrifice. Biden and his entourage will continue doing what they do, while eventually Tuberville will either give in or force a vote on the abortion issue and the next group of politicians wearing stars on their shoulders will get their confirmations.


Did those evacuating the embassy get a Combat Star on their Air Assault Badge?

Skivvy Stacker

I wouldn’t wear it.
If required to by regulation, it would always be in undisplayible condition. Or I would deny I was authorized to wear it.