Jewish Soldier Killed in Afghanistan


us-marines1A Jewish soldier, PFC Aaron Fairbairn of Aberdeen, Washington, was killed this past week in Afghanistan. PFC Fairbairn was killed on July 4th when terrorists attacked Combat Outpost Zerok. Also killed in the attack was Pfc. Justin A. Casillas. Aaron was the 5th Jewish KIA in Afghanistan this year. British Army Lt Paul Mervis was killed near Sangin on June 12th, AF 1Lt Roslyn Schulte and LTC Shawn Pine (USAR) were killed near Kabul on May 20th, and Private Gregory Sher of the Australian Army was killed in Southern Afghanistan on January 4th.

In the July 4th attack, Taliban insurgents fired mortars and rockets at the base near Zerok. The two soldiers were killed in the vicious attack and dozens of Taliban perished in retaliatory air strikes. A suicide bomber also tried to drive a truck filled with explosives and gravel through the compound’s gates. He was shot before he reached it, but the bombs still exploded. The two-hour, two-pronged assault ended after U.S. troops called in air strikes.

An Afghan government official said 32 Taliban fighters were killed, though the U.S. military put the number closer to 10.

“It was a complex attack that started with small-arms and indirect fire on the post, then an improvised explosive device went off,” said Lt. Cmdr. Christine Sidenstricker.

Seven U.S. soldiers and two Afghan troops were wounded.

The attack came two days after the U.S. launched the largest anti-Taliban offensive in years, aimed at stabilizing the country ahead of Aug. 20 elections.

┬áZerok combat outpost in Afghanistan is known to coalition forces as “Ambush Alley.” Despite the imminent threat of attack by insurgent fighters along the winding, narrow road surrounded by steep hills and large rocks on the way to Zerok Combat Outpost in northern Paktika province, the paratroopers of 1st Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team continue to fight the terrorists, rooting them out of their hiding places.

{Elisha Newscenter}


  1. 1/503, 173rd ABCT left Afghanistan a year ago, though they did operate in Paktika Province, including Ambush Alley and that outpost from May 2007 to late July 2008 when they redeployed to Italy and Germany.

  2. Aaron Fairbairn used his Mother’s maiden name to enlist as I would never have allowed it.

    He was born Aaron Eli Ben-Neth and I am making sure a Star of David will embrace his resting place.