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Remembering Mike Spann

Remembering Mike Spann

The first American killed in the Afghan war, on November 25, 2001.  I’ve told his story before, but it is worth remembering every year.

This interesting video by The Daily Caller recalls the group of special forces similar to Spann, who worked with Afhan warlord Abdul Rahdis Dostum to route the Taliban in northern Afghanistan.  As indicated in my prior post, Dostum has dedicated a memorial to Spann, who was killed during a revolt of Taliban prisoners, including Johnny Walker Lindh, shown in the video shortly after being captured.

Here is the letter General Dostum sent after Spann’s death:

To the family of the late Mike Spann and the people of the United States of America, the Transitional Islamic State of Afghanistan and especially the innocent people of the North will always remember Mike Spann as a hero for his ultimate and courageous sacrifice that helped to bring freedom from the bonds of inhumanity and cruelty imposed by the Taliban-Al Qaeda terrorists who occupied our country.

We so deeply appreciate the sacrifice of this courageous man, Mike, and honor him today. We understand and know that there is no greater gift for freedom than to give one’s life. And Mike gave his life for the cause of freedom, for the cause of good over evil, and for this we count him as an eternal friend. We will not forget Mike and we will honor his sacrifice by resisting and never allowing the evil of extremism and terror to return to this place. This monument represents a symbol of our deep appreciation.

May God Bless Mike and all those who have sacrificed their lives for the great cause of freedom.

Alhaj General Abdul Rashid Dostum Special Envoy of the Islamic Transitional State and Commander of Northern Afghanistan

Update:  As mentioned in the comments, the CIA Officers Memorial Foundation was set up to accept contributions from the public to support the children of CIA employees killed in the line of duty. You can contribute at the link. I just did.


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


A great thing to read and watch to start the day. Makes me feel good that men like that are protecting us. God bless them.

William A. Jacobson | November 25, 2011 at 10:33 am

What always amazes me about these videos is how ordinary the guys seem. They could be the person next to you at the football game or in line at a store, but they do extraordinary things.

    Yep, you got that right, Chief. It seems those who are raised to believe in America and what she stands for are molded into good, often wonderful people. Those who are raised to vilify America … well, we see them in OWS camps … also known as “The Gratingest Generation.”

I remember seeing footage in 2001, or maybe in 2002 soon after the fall of Kabul, of Special Forces on horseback charging down a hillside and thinking to myself that it was an iconic American legend brought to life: the cavalry charging to the rescue.

I wonder if it was these very men I saw that day?

LI is to be commended for remembering Mike Spann. It is rare that we see even a glimpse of the often lethal dangers experienced by the men and women of CIA, especially during the past 10 years of two intelligence driven wars.

Since Spann’s death shortly after the first CIA teams went into Afghanistan, 23 more CIA officers have been killed in the line of duty. For various reasons related to their secretive missions, we do not even know their names.

What’s more, because CIA officers are civilian federal employees, their surviving families are not entitled to the array of benefits provided to the spouses and children of fallen members of the military. To help fill this gap, former CIA officers have created a not-for-profit foundation. If you want to help, go here: