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Afghan troops kill 2 US Army officers in Kabul



The murder of US and NATO military personnel by Afghan security forces has skyrocketed in recent days, with five troops killed in the past week. Four have been killed in the aftermath of the Koran-burning incident, including two US Army officers who were gunned down in the Interior Ministry today. From Reuters:

Two Americans believed to be a U.S. colonel and major were shot dead in Afghanistan's interior ministry on Saturday, security sources said, while rage gripped the country for a fifth day over the burning of the Muslim holy book at a NATO base.

A spokeswoman for NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) confirmed two of their servicemen had been shot dead in central Kabul by an individual who turned his weapon on them. She declined to say if the killer was a member of the Afghan military or police.

According to the BBC, NATO has withdrawn all of its personnel from the Afghan ministries after today's shooting.

The Taliban claimed credit for the attack in a statement that was released on their website, Voice of Jihad:

A recent news report from Kabul province state that on later Saturday Abd-ur-Rahman and his fellow, two brave Mujahideen of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan Afghan shot and killed 4 high-ranking American military officer-cum-advisers within the ministry of defenses in the heart of Kabul city, the capita of the country.

Mujahid Abdurrahman, working in the ministry of defenses, said though cellular phone from within the facility of the ministry of defense that they took out the four said American invaders this evening in reaction to the desecration of Holy Quran by the US invaders in Bagram Airbase and as way of retaliatory action for the constantan blasphemy and violation of our sacrosanctities by the foreign occupiers, particularly the US terrorist forces. Abdurrahman added that they were putting up strong resistance against the invaders and their puppets within facility for quite a while.

Two days ago, two US soldiers were killed when an Afghan soldier in Nangarhar turned his weapon on US forces at a base during protests. The Afghan soldier escaped into the crowd.

And on Feb. 20, one Albanian soldier was killed in an ambush by Afghan policemen in Spin Boldak in Kandahar. From The Associated Press:

Monday's shooting occurred in the village of Robat, in Kandahar province's Spin Boldak district which borders Pakistan, said Kandahar police chief Abdul Raziq. The troops had gone there for a meeting about opening two schools and a health center, the Albanian defense ministry said.

The soldiers "found themselves attacked by a group of persons wearing uniforms of the Afghan police," Brig. Gen. Viktor Berdo, the head of Albanian land forces, told reporters in the country's capital Tirana.

The attackers opened fire with five assault rifles and one light machine gun, the Albanian Defense Ministry said. One Albanian, a captain, died later in a hospital in the provincial capital of Kandahar city. Albanian officials initially said a corporal also was killed, but later clarified that the soldier was in a coma, adding "there is still hope of improvement."

After the shooting, 11 Afghan policemen were arrested.

The US is predicating its transition of security to the Afghan National Security Forces on the US military's ability to partner with Afghan forces. With the rash of murders by Afghan troops in the field, at military bases, and in Afghan ministries, this will be exceedingly difficult to do.



READER COMMENTS: "Afghan troops kill 2 US Army officers in Kabul"

Posted by Paul T at February 25, 2012 1:36 PM ET:

Terrible news.

Why are we still there in large numbers????

Posted by Vimal Mohan at February 25, 2012 2:35 PM ET:

Sir,
I have gone through the details and I have my own views on the issue. Had I been there as an incharge of camp in question; I would have engaged a reliable interpreter. I would have had benefit of his advise or services to scan the papers for weeding out.
In the instant case , above said aspect has been perhaps deliberately crafted by the Afghan Mil official, who could have avoided this mishap. There is a need to examine this aspect. Whatever has happened can't be undone, but one can loose important documents written in other language.
Unfortunately some one has succeeded in his mischievous game to tarnish the image of NATO FORCES and spread the hatredness against them recently ignited by ISI.

Posted by M. Muthuswamy at February 25, 2012 2:37 PM ET:

Our thoughts are with the families of the brave warriors, senselessly murdered.

The premise that religion-inspired barbarism can be engaged with has come crashing down. It was simply too frail a premise and an inadvertent push on its weak-link was enough to push it over the horizon.

As a result, Rubicon may have been crossed.

These events have now likely made extrication from Afghanistan quite a challenge and undercut our ability to engage Muslim nations.

The real question behind the 9/11, 7/7, and 11/25 attacks will have to be tackled: what is that about Islam that is driving its followers into backwardness and intolerable violence?

Obviously, redeploying our forces from Muslim lands is not going to be enough to spare us from its fury.

The political science/international studies programs in the U.S. have let the nation down, by failing to develop a cogent theory of the threat.

Posted by ArneFufkin at February 25, 2012 5:31 PM ET:

Obama is probably working on his apology to Karzai.

Posted by Arthur at February 25, 2012 6:37 PM ET:

It is about time to officially declare a state of war against the military of afganistan and president Karzai. Too many of our soldiers have been ambushed and killed by karzai's army. One US Marine Corps Battalion should be enough to decimate the entire military and Karzai should be done away with. The USMC battalion could be backed up by a Marine Corps Brigade and plenty of air support from one of our super carriers. Victory by St. Patrick's day.

Posted by Jeff Edelman at February 25, 2012 7:33 PM ET:

America needs to show its outrage by expediting the withdrawal now. Have all American troops gone within 60 days. Stop all aid immediately. Leave them to their koran and all that goes with it. Move over Somalia, here comes Afghanistan.

Posted by Zeissa at February 26, 2012 1:06 AM ET:

This is what you get for assuming you can imprint democracy on a natural enemy.

Afghanistan needs reeducation.

Posted by Zeissa at February 27, 2012 5:21 AM ET:

Not that I support the crazier statements that was made before mine of course, there are plenty of Afghan units that keep the peace rather than act duplicitously.