U.S. checks civilian death reports in Afghan strike
Thu Jun 11, 2:04 AM
By Sharafuddin Sharafyar
HERAT, Afghanistan – An insurgent commander targeted by a U.S. air strike in western Afghanistan may have survived, but the U.S. military is checking reports that civilians were among the dead, the military said on Thursday.
The U.S. military said on Wednesday Mullah Mustafa and 16 fighters had been killed in a targeted air strike in Ghor province, describing the commander as a “warlord” reported to have links with both Iran and the Taliban.
Which is preposterous as the Iranian government are very Shiite, and the Taliban ultra-Sunnite. Which means that the Taliban see the Iranian government as heretical enemies. And that the Iranian government has a long history of supporting the Afghan enemies of the Taliban, the Northern Alliance. But never mind reality; too much reality would spoil a “good” United States neo-conservative propaganda spin story. Bomb first, think later, is the adagium of US military intervention in Afghanistan, and elsewhere.
It said he had been struck after being observed meeting with armed men at a remote location where no civilians were present.
But on Thursday, the military issued an updated statement, which said “credible reports surfaced that Mustafa survived the attack” and “unsubstantiated reports of civilian casualties emerged.” It said it was checking the reports of civilian deaths.
Ghor’s deputy governor, Keramuddin Rezazada, told Reuters he was not able to confirm whether Mustafa had been killed, and villagers had reported that 10 civilians as well as 12 armed men were killed in the strike. …
The issue became especially fraught after an air strike last month in western Farah province, in which the Afghan government says 140 civilians died.