‘We didn’t lose this war’: Wichita veteran reflects on Taliban take over in Afghanistan

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The events unfolding in Afghanistan are bringing up different emotions for Americans who served there.

“We’re just very upset about the time and the talent that we lost out there. You know the young men and women that did not make it back home,” said Commander Martin Garcia, VFW Post 112.

In 2010, Martin Garcia was deployed to Afghanistan, serving with the 101st Airborne Division.

“It was daunting for us as a whole because we were not completely trained for the mission, but we do what every best soldier does. We adapted,” he said.

Garcia worked as a mechanic for the artillery unit. He spent time getting to meet some of the Afghan Community.

“Unfortunately, now I wonder, you know, if the very people that are getting chased down the tarmac in Kabul, could that be one of those children that we tried to help at one point in time?” Garcia wondered.

The United States’ removal of troops strategy to the Taliban taking over Afghanistan has brought out many emotions.

“Frustration, more than anything, not even really anger,” he said. “Really, we’re going through, just trying to accept the fact that the war is over now, and there’s nothing that we can do to help change anything that’s happened there and turn the tide.”

Garcia said social media has helped him connect with others who served in Afghanistan, allowing them to process what’s happening abroad.

He says his biggest concern is the safety of the interpreters and allies.

“The longer those individuals are there, their life expectancy decreases by the day.”

Garcia reminding his brothers and sisters in arms one thing.

“We didn’t lose this war,” Garcia said. “It was lost by men and women in Washington in suits and ties.”

Commander Garcia said VFW Post 112 is open for veterans looking for support or simply wanting to connect with other vets.

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