Son of the victim: 9/11 family members harmed by Biden’s plan to freeze Afghan funds
President Joe Biden’s executive order to release $3.5 billion in frozen Afghan funds for the benefit of the Afghan people, while leaving at least that amount to settle claims by families of 9/11 victims in the United States, has drawn fire from one of these family members.
Brett Eagleson, son of Bruce Eagleson, who died in the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, has protested that it is unfair to have victims’ families take legal action for compensation part of the frozen funds.
A cousin of a man who was on the hijacked United Flight 93 when it crashed near Shanksville, County Somerset, on September 11, said he would be happy as long as the families involved get their day in court.
Eagleson said he was speaking on behalf of “many members of the 9/11 community” when he released this statement on Friday:
“Today’s news reports indicating that billions of dollars in Afghan funds currently frozen by the US government may soon be directed to only a small percentage of 9/11 families – the family members of just 47 of the murdered victims this day – are extremely troubling, if accurate. All family members of those killed on September 11 in the terrorist attacks should be treated equally.
• Biden releases frozen Afghan billions for relief, 9/11 victims
“Anything less than fair treatment for and between the 9/11 families with respect to these frozen assets is outrageous and will be viewed as a betrayal by the federal government of the 9/11 community as a whole. Nearly 3,000 families lost loved ones in the Taliban-backed attacks planned on Afghan soil on September 11, 2001. No life taken at the hands of terrorists is worth more than another.
“We strongly support the distribution of a large portion of these frozen assets to help alleviate the horrific humanitarian crisis and to come to the aid of those suffering in Afghanistan today. However, for funds intended for 9/11 families, leaving this matter to a court, as this (Biden) administration action would, will force the families of those killed on 9/11 to fight amongst themselves. It is wrong, unfair and unfair.
“The best and fairest plan would be for the administration to order these $3.5 billion in frozen Afghan funds directly into the existing fund created for these distribution purposes under the Justice for American Victims of the state-sponsored terrorism. Any mechanism that treats the families of some victims as less deserving or prioritizes some victims over others is an insult to the memory of the victims of this mass murder.
Patrick White of Naples, Florida, cousin of Flight 93 passenger Louis Nacke, said he supports the 9/11 family members “having full opportunity to have their grievances against the Taliban and funds withheld heard ( Da Afghanistan Bank) in court, and I fully support the relentless efforts of this administration to provide fiscal and health assistance to Afghan citizens outside of Taliban control.