On "Your World" today, Pete Hegseth said the troops are also proud of their commander-in-chief, because he's "untied their hands."
"The commanders and the guys on the ground have wanted to unleash hell on ISIS and on the Taliban and on Al Qaeda for decades," Hegseth, an Army combat veteran, said. "But rules of engagement, politically motivated commanders, constraints from the White House, have prevented them from the fighting the total war that you need to."
He said this was the "right step," and it's going to motivate and energize the troops on the ground.
Hegseth also noted that the attack was launched in an area where a U.S. Green Beret was killed Saturday by small-arms fire while operating against ISIS targets.
He said the Pentagon may not admit it, but this bombing was a "direct response" to that.
"You take one of ours, President Trump and the commanders and generals in Afghanistan said, 'We're going to go after you and unleash hell on you,'" Hegseth said. "That's exactly what happened."