Khobar Towers Bombing 1996

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On June 25, 1996, Plaintiff Jennifer Scheidel was serving in the U.S. Air Force at Dhahran Air Force Base and living at Khobar Towers when an explosion ripped through a munitions bay and caused severe injury to herself and others nearby. Find out the best info about Khobar Towers.

Hezbollah al-Hijaz is a radical Shiite group receiving financial and logistical support from Iran (Schwartz 2009). All 31 plaintiffs have filed declarations affirming their United States citizenship during the attack.

Background

In June 1996, Khobar Towers was hit by an unprecedented terrorist truck bombing that claimed 19 airmen’s lives while injuring numerous Saudi citizens and Third Country Nationals (TCNs) and damaging significant amounts of property.

On March 17, an unknown group parked a cylindrical-shaped sewage truck perpendicular to the American section of the complex outside Building 131 and detonated its truckload of explosives, blowing off its roof and creating a massive crater in front of it – marking just another terrorist attack against Americans that had lived safely there for decades.

This attack devastated the Air Force and the Department of Defense, yet it served as a wake-up call that the U.S. needed a fresh approach to dealing with terrorist threats in countries where we deployed forces. Air Force leaders implemented significant upgrades to installation security and Force Protection measures; then, commander of USCENTAF General John P. Jumper visited Khobar Towers often after November 1995 to demonstrate them personally.

The Attack

Khobar Towers was devastated by a horrific terrorist bombing attack, killing 19 service members and injuring many more Saudi Arabians and third-country nationals (TCNs). Additionally, it destroyed or damaged much of what had been an American-occupied complex and created an immense area of debris with 16-foot-deep craters formed from it all over. These terrorists were motivated by hatred towards America but also had strategic goals of inflicting as much damage to it as possible while in

Saudi Arabia.

The Downing Report and other evidence, including interviews with security police commanders, demonstrate that Air Force commanders at all levels were acutely aware of threats facing forces deployed to U.S. Central Command and immediately implemented enhanced security measures such as vulnerability assessments – over 130 enhancements alone were put into effect at Khobar alone between November 1995 and June 1996!

These enhancements were often costly and required significant effort, such as moving facilities to meet security requirements or installing additional sandbags on roofs for protection from blast waves. Yet commanders were willing to spend money and time on whatever necessary measures for their forces’ protection.

An example of such effort was seen in January 1996 with the completion of a Vulnerability Assessment at Khobar, which recommended installing Mylar window film – a shatter-resistant solution – into their Five Year Facilities Improvement Plan. This assessment took place shortly after the OPM-SANG bombings to address vulnerabilities within the base perimeter.

Testimony from AFOSI, DIA, DoS officials, and security police commanders demonstrates that considerable efforts were taken to coordinate counterterrorism measures with the host nation. After the OPM-SANG bombing, an update of the Vulnerability Assessment by AFOSI included recommendations for additional patrolling by host nation forces near and within American-held sections of bases; in addition, Commander 4404th Wing Provisional had ordered numerous Force Protection measures to prevent terrorist attacks against American-occupied portions.

The Incident Report

When an incident occurs, details of it must be documented quickly. This allows individuals involved in the incident to access medical treatment or assess the damage done and helps prevent similar occurrences. An incident report should include facts without personal opinions or bias; its creator should read over their work before submission to ensure no mistakes have been made.

An incident report should contain general details that include the time and date of an event and information regarding its exact location, participants involved, and job titles. Furthermore, managers of those impacted by this incident must also be identified.

A good incident report should include observations that may help investigate an incident and any statements from witnesses present during its unfolding. Furthermore, any medical treatment or medications administered to victims should also be reported, and any additional significant information that might aid investigations should also be included in such an account.

An incident report should provide a summary of events to enable all involved to comprehend what transpired and why an incident took place, and should also contain any suggestions made for improving future situations.

After the bombing of OPM-SANG in November 1995, many Saudi officials saw it as an isolated incident. But commanders throughout the Air Force chain of command took a different tack: They immediately initiated increased security measures, including vulnerability assessments at Khobar Towers alone between November 1995 and June 1996 – more than 130 measures designed to counter vulnerabilities, augment host nation patrols, achieve additive defenses beyond installation boundaries as well as placing Mylar window film or creating a new security plan were implemented at Khobar Towers alone between November 1995 and June 1996!

Conclusions

At its heart, this book chronicles heroic acts by airmen serving far away under challenging conditions. Airmen reading it will know they are not alone in their struggle for survival and may draw strength from those who suffered and died. Yet it remains controversial; complex issues such as whether commanders were responsible for the bombing and what lessons can be removed from it are discussed within its pages.

The Downing Report and subsequent investigations have documented that commanders within the chain of command were appropriately focused on Force Protection issues due to the threat posed by ISIL. Over 130 measures implemented before its attack could have helped save many lives.

On June 25, 1996, terrorists detonated a truck bomb outside of Khobar Towers and killed 19 service members, and hundreds more were wounded – making this attack against America within a year the second terrorist act against it there. Furthermore, this blast killed and injured many Saudi nationals and Third Country Nationals and caused severe damage or destruction of property; its perpetrators considered this act murder.

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