American Soldier in Custody after Early Morning Attack Kills 16 in Afghanistan

Monday, March 12, 2012

A rogue US Army staff sergeant has been accused of killing 16 villagers in Kandahar, Afghanistan early Sunday morning. The soldier reportedly went from house to house shooting victims which include nine children and three women. The soldier, who acted alone, is in custody at a NATO base in Afghanistan. After weeks of violence due to American soldiers burning the Koran, many fear the repercussions this shooting will have with the position of the Taliban and US-Afghan relations.

David Sanger is the chief Washington correspondent for our partner The New York Times and contributor to WQXR's The Washington Report.


David Sanger

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Joseph Capriglione

Comments [1]

Nikos Retsos from Chicago, USA

Taking an American into custody for committing a massacre is just window dressing. There were dozens of massacres by U.S. troops in Iraq, and all of them were whitewashed in the U.S. military's dirty laundry basement! Afghanistan is the same story. The fact of the matter is American troops are trained to kill, and as a superpower the U.S. can protect its troops from war crimes at the International Criminal Court (ITC) by: a) Not being a signatory or member of the ITC, and b) by controlling the appointment of its judges and prosecutors through its funding, and through the votes of its European allies and member states.

This event reminds me the "Kill, Kill, Kill" unison shouting during U.S. army training featured by a "Frontline" documentary broadcasted on PBS. The reason of such training in the U.S. army is to wipe out any trace of human emotions among trainees, and turn them into vicious fighters that can win wars. Wars are won by killing of one's enemy, but the dehumanizing of soldiers during training makes their vision of the enemy blurry. And then, the civilians are just cut down, some times just for fun, other times for taking their fingers and ears for souvenirs, and other times just for revenge - as this one! Other times, GI's come back home from war, tell their parents "I am a murderer," and commit suicide. Their conscience reset after being out of the battlefield, and they are just overwhelmed by the heavy burden of their guilt!

The killing of the 16 Afghan civilians is proof that "star wars" weapons and dehumanizing of soldiers doesn't win wars. And that occurs because the "morale of being in the war for a valid purpose is not there!" That "morale vacuum" turns previously normal human beings into vicious killers!" Nikos Retsos, retired professor

Mar. 12 2012 11:40 AM

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