The Afghan Army Chief of Staff is reporting that the 16 civilians massacred by a US soldier was preplanned by a squad that deliberately targeted the village of Balandi. Lt. General Sher Mohammad Karim’s statement is boldly in contradiction to the official statement put out by the NATO forces after the incident. As you’ll recall 16 civilians were massacred by US forces several days ago, including 9 children in the Panjwii district. At that time NATO and the US insisted that it was a the work of a single “lone wolf gunman”. Despite their statement several witness claimed they saw and entire group of soldiers. One of those victims, a 15 year old boy who was shot in the leg, spoke to Afghan President Hamid Karzai personally.
Lt. Gen. Karimi says he visited the scene of the crime and spoke to relatives of the victims before reporting back to Karzai on Friday. He personally inspected the location where the incident took place and insisted that he speak to the man implicated in the shooting. Despite his requests, NATO would not allow him to speak to Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, who is being held for the incident. In addition, Karimi criticized the American investigation team for refusing to co-operate with him on the investigation. The results of his report is that it must have been 15 to 20 troops that carried out the massacre.
Witnesses of the incident said that the counterinsurgency operation had received air support and that they had also been brought in by military helicopter. The Afghan parliamentary investigation team concluded that the killing was a very deliberate action and not something that could have been carried out by a single man, or even done spur of the moment. It is clear to them that NATO is trying to cover up the incident.
News of Bales removal from Afghanistan to Qatar and then to the US has angered the Afghan government and population where many want him to stand trial in country. John Henry Browne, the lawyer for Bales insists that the case against his client is not a criminal one. He cited multiple combat tours, suffering head trauma, other wounds and fatigue as possible reasons for his actions. He also said that his client may have also been intoxicated at the time.
Despite adamant claims by NATO forces to be attempting to help the population of Afghanistan, more and more massacres like this one are occurring, and many more have yet to be uncovered. Imperialism always has excuses for the inhuman things they do to the people they are occupying and controlling. Combat fatigue is a common excuse given for murders carried out by the imperialist soldiers. This is no excuse, this war has nothing to do with the betterment of the lives of the Afghan people. This is all about control over a country with huge potential for mining. Its incidents like these that show the true face of the US empire aided by its running dogs in NATO. The only solution is a full withdraw of all foreign forces from the country.