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American Soldier Kills 16 Afghans In Shooting Rampage

| On 12, Mar 2012

U.S. soldiers man a checkpoint in Afghanistan. (AFP Photo)

There was some very unfortunate news coming from Afghanistan this weekend.

A U.S. soldier opened fire on Afghan citizens on Sunday morning killing 16 civilians in what is being described as a “rogue” attack. Still unidentified to the press, the soldier went house to house in two villages near his base murdering nine children, three women, and four men. From the news reports, the attack seems unprovoked (especially with so many children involved).

Witnesses say the soldier and others were loud and intoxicated as they raided the homes. It has also been reported that they burned some of the bullet-riddled corpses.


The U.S. might as well brace itself for potential fallout from this attack. We are fighting a “war” in Afghanistan, but the rules of decency and respect for innocent human life still apply to the situation. Our nation is still in hot water after the accidental burning of Qurans on a military base a few weeks ago.

This news story will hopefully make the military look a little deeper at the mental health challenges facing our soldiers in harm’s way. You don’t just “accidentally” kill 16 people — many of whom were women and children. There are some deeper issues there.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai called the acts “unforgivable.” He wants the soldier who committed the crime to be tried in an Afghan court. The Taliban has already said they will seek revenge for the killings against the “sick-minded American savages.”

President Obama issued a statement about the killings saying, “This incident is tragic and shocking and does not represent the exceptional character of our military and the respect that the United States has for the people of Afghanistan.” He also personally called President Karzai to offer his condolences.

This is NOT the way to “win the hearts and minds” of the country where we seem to be stuck fighting an endless war.

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