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“This opportunity has allowed me to serve for the greater good and has meant the world to me. Everyone deserves a chance to live a peaceful life. To see everyone band together to make this happen is nothing short of extraordinary, and exemplifies the Air Force’s core values: Integrity first, Service Before Self and Excellence In All We Do. One thing that has stuck with me throughout this effort to evacuate Afghanistan, are all the kids smiling and playing, knowing they have a better life ahead of them," said Airman 1st Class Jose Antonio Cruz, 379th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron response force member. Cruz’s home station is Lakenheath Air Base, England with the 48th Security Forces Squadron. Service members of the 379th Air Expeditionary Wing, as well as other supporting agencies are working 24/7 to support ongoing evacuation operations out of Afghanistan Aug. 23, 2021, at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar. As part of the operation, thousands of qualified evacuees continue to arrive here from Hamid Karzai International Airport, Afghanistan, on board multiple military aircraft. The Department of Defense is committed to supporting the evacuation of American citizens, Special Immigrant Visa applicants and other at-risk individuals from Afghanistan. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kylie Barrow)
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