Children and parents lost each other. Troops saw children trampled underfoot. A Marine saw a Talib knife a boy who was climbing over a wall. A tear-gas canister struck the side of an 8-year-old girl’s face, melting her skin. A new mother staggered through the gate with her baby, who had just died, sobbing so hard that she threw up on the shoes of a consular officer checking documents. By the East Gate, a stack of corpses baked in the sun for hours. Outside the North Gate, the crushed bodies of four babies floated in a river of sewage.
George Packer, “The Betrayal” (The Atlantic; March, 2022)