Suicide bomber kills 40 at wedding in Kandahar

A Taliban suicide bomber struck at a wedding in a strategic district in the southern Afghan province of Kandahar.

The bomber, wearing a vest packed with explosives and ball bearings to maximize casualties, entered a tent and detonated.

“Right now I can say that dozens of people were killed and injured in the blast,” a senior police official in Kandahar told The Hindu. “It was a suicide bomber that targeted the wedding party.”

The suicide bomber killed 40 people and wounded 74, according to Xinhua. The groom and several children were among those wounded.

The target of the attack is not yet known. According to AFP, the families in attendance support neither the Taliban or the government. But a Reuters report indicated many of the guests had links to local police.

Taliban suicide bombers are often recruited and trained in Taliban and al Qaeda camps in Pakistan’s lawless tribal agencies of North and South Waziristan.

The Taliban have carried out a campaign of assassination and intimidation against tribal leaders and politicians who back the government and Coalition forces. More than 20 senior officials, including the deputy mayor of Kandahar, have been killed by Taliban assassins over the past several months.

The attack may be revenge for the killing of two senior Taliban leaders in Kandahar since late May. On May 30, Afghan and Coalition special operations forces killed Mullah Zergay, who led the Taliban in Kandahar City, as well as in the vital districts of Zhari and Arghandab. On May 29, Afghan and Coalition forces killed Haji Amir, who was described as one of the top two Taliban leaders in all of Kandahar province.

Kandahar is considered to be the center of the Taliban’s power base in Afghanistan. The International Security Assistance Force has placed great emphasis on Kandahar and is deploying the bulk of its forces en route to Afghanistan to the province. President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Robert Gates have said that progress must be made by December in Kandahar, and in other key areas in the south, east, and north, in order for Western nations to continue their support for the war.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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11 Comments

  • DL says:

    No doubt the locals will blame America.

  • ArneFufkin says:

    I don’t understand the strategic benefit of these kinds of civilian attacks. They just seem to be carnage for the sake of carnage. One can understand how attacks on the ISAF or ANA/ANP could be rationalized from a PR standpoint but this kind of murderous assault seems to work against their propaganda mission to turn the locals against the “foreign invaders” and the corrupt police that aid them.
    It would seem the residents of Kandahar would have more available options to resist this menace than the relatively isolated tribesmen of FATA. Maybe I’m missing something here.

  • Mr T says:

    40 killed, perhaps a hundred in attendance. A hundred people from that area and none of them are Taliban supporters or did the bomber intend to kill supporters of the Taliban too if they were there? Interesting

  • Rosario says:

    How sad this is to hear of this happening to Afghans by fellow Afghans. I hope they can be as brave and as tough as the Iraqi people have proven to be.

  • madashell59 says:

    Hope you are wrong. I hope that the locals wake up to the reality that these acts are not an act of Allah but of the Devil himself. I hope that the local police ban together like the solidarity of the US police and the US firemen when someone kills one of their own and root the evil out of their group (if there are any there) and then out of existence. Suicide Bombers: Shame on these fools that become the tools of the Taliban

  • kp says:

    Or perhaps the Taliban have a “Reichstag Fire” approach to their psyops: big bombing plus conspiracy theories (that the locals love to beleive) that the Infidel Invaders are targeting Americans and their Lackeies in Kabul are lying to you.

    Or perhaps it’s just to instill fear into the locals in the style of many despots.

    Or perhaps there are other links to the target here: the fighting is tribal and who are you going to kill at a wedding a couple of clans coming together inside a tribe. Competition to leadership, drugs, power, land, etc. So long as they can be framed as takfir (which seems so easy: did they have music?) then the Taliban thinks it’s OK.

    Without a real investigations it’s impossible to distinguish these speculations.

  • James says:

    //www.aolnews.com/world/article/taliban-kill-hang-7-year-old-boy-as-government-spy/19511145
    After reading this, can there be any doubt as to who the real war criminals are?
    Can there be any doubt as to who are the real “occupiers”; which are at least in part the “putin rejects” (aka chechnyens) sent from Russia with hate.
    ” . . . foreign militants are usually involved.”

  • T Ruth says:

    At least one report i read–forget which–said the host belonged to a local anti-Talib militia. Still, this is really sad.
    How savage can humans be? Imagine what will transpire after the US withdrawal.
    My condolences to the victims families and friends.
    The Pak army and ISI who mid-wifed the Taliban should be smashed.
    And here’s another reason why, ie confirmation of what was already known with some more details and of course more to come.
    //timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/ISI-guided-LeT-at-every-step-for-26/11/articleshow/6030261.cms
    //www.zeenews.com/news632839.html

  • James says:

    If there is any “good” in all this bad news coming from Afghanistan, maybe it will become quite obvious to the Afghan people who the bad guys (and occupiers) really are. Remember, this is how it turned out in Iraq.
    We can only hope (and pray) there will be an equivalent to a “Sunni Awakening” with the Afghans

  • MattR says:

    This is similar to the sidebar about the seven year old that was hanged to let the people know who’s in power. But doesn’t this suggest the Taliban is losing control?

  • Zeissa says:

    The Taliban have become more unpopular, but at least until recently they were doing well strategically, though they’re being pushed back now in terms of population control, finance and leadership.
    There’s plenty of good news, except for shaky NATO involvement and a useless Afghan government that executes apostates and gays.

Iraq

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Aqap

Al shabaab

Boko Haram

Isis