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Maj. Gen. Chris Donahue, commander of the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, became the last American soldier to leave Afghanistan, the Defense Department revealed Monday.
The Pentagon posted on its Twitter account a photograph of the serviceman shortly before boarding a C-17, the military aircraft that took off from Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport on Monday at 3:29 p.m. Eastern Time (19:29 GMT) and brought an end to America’s longest war in its history.
The 82nd Airborne Division is based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and is part of the Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps.
This paratrooper division, according to its website, has fought in World War I and World War II, as well as the Gulf War (1990-1991.)
It was also during the U.S. invasion of Panama (December 20, 1989 to January 3, 1990) and in the Iraq war (2003-2011), among others.
On Monday, the head of the Central Command (CENTCOM), General Frank McKenzie, announced the completion of the withdrawal from Afghanistan and the end of the mission to evacuate American citizens, third-country nationals and vulnerable Afghans.
During a press conference from the Pentagon, in which he intervened telematically, McKenzie detailed that the last American military plane was also carrying the current U.S. ambassador, Ross Wilson.
He also confirmed that since August 14, a day before the Taliban took Kabul, more than 79,000 civilians have been evacuated on U.S. military flights from Hamid Karzai International Airport, including 6,000 Americans.
Together with the international coalition flights, this brings the figure to more than 123,000 civilians evacuated.