USA Today, 1 January 2020
Published on a day where not many people would have read a story about an atrocity in Afghanistan, this story deserves a careful read: about the Americans bombing a village to kill a Taleban commander linked to feuding local commanders who had been hired by a (then) British security company which had been forced to do so by the US military because the two commanders were ‘security assets’ kept because of their Taleban connections. The result: over 70 dead, 60 of them children; followed by denials of wrong-doing in the result of which many civilian casualties had been caused, then proof, but still discounted. “CENTCOM exonerated the military of any war crimes.” It was “one of the deadliest civilian casualty events of the Afghan campaign” (and even with a cameo of Oliver North, of Iran-Contra Connection fame – and a list of the names and ages of the victims).
The houses leveled in the raid were never repaired. The neighborhood is a pile of mud bricks and walls scarred with bullet holes.
Daudzai, Karzai’s former chief of staff, said he didn’t know the government had failed to deliver on its promises to rebuild Azizabad.
“We should have done it,” he said in an interview. “We are also equally guilty.”
This article was last updated on 2 Jun 2020