Two American Soliders Killed Over Afghan Koran Burnings

The protests in Afghanistan over the inadvertent burning of the Koran by American troops have claimed their first victims:

Two U.S. troops have been shot to death and four more wounded by an Afghan solider who turned his gun on his allies in apparent anger over the burning of Korans at a U.S. military base in Afghanistan, an Afghan official tells CBS News.

A statement from the International Security Assistance Force – Afghanistan, the international coalition in the country, confirmed that two troops were killed in Eastern Afghanistan on Thursday by “an individual wearing an Afghan National Army uniform.”

ISAF does not typically give the nationality of casualties until family members have been notified, but the CBS News source in the Afghan government said those killed and injured in the attack in the eastern Ningarhar province, along the border with Pakistan, were Americans.

The source also said the shooting appeared to be motivated by the burning of Korans at the sprawling U.S. Bagram air base, north of Kabul, but he did not provide additional details as to what led him to that conclusion.

The suspect apparently joined other protesters already demonstrating against the U.S. at an American military outpost and opened fire with an automatic weapon, according to the Afghan source.

The killings are unjustifiable, of course. However, I agree completely with James Joyner’s assessment that this is yet another reason why we need to bring as swift an end to our ill-fated missing in Afghanistan as soon as possible.

Photo via CBS News

FILED UNDER: Asia, Military Affairs, National Security, Quick Takes, World Politics,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Brummagem Joe says:

    that this is yet another reason why we need to bring as swift an end to our ill-fated missing in Afghanistan as soon as possible.

    Yes it only took him six or seven years to figure it out. I agree entirely on the substance, the only issue now is how we exit as gracefully as possible. I understand that if the decision was taken to pull the plug tomorrow it would take six months of concentrated and highly visible effort just to remove all military hardware, heavy equipment and installations. Hopefully we have a low key steady exodus going on at present.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    The protests in Afghanistan over the inadvertent burning of the Koran by American troops have claimed their first victims:

    Uhhhh, Doug, looky here Dateline: 22 Feb. 2012 @ 1049 EST

    Your article’s dateline: Feb 23 2012 6:54 AM (EST?)

    But then, maybe Afghans just don’t count.

  3. Rob in CT says:

    IIRC, there have been problems with Afghan army guys turning their weapons on our soldiers for a while.

    This incident clearly hasn’t helped. But even if it had never happened, it’s long past time for the departure of our forces.

  4. The protests in Afghanistan over the inadvertent burning of the Koran by American troops have claimed their first victims:

    You mean other than the seven Afghans already killed in the riots? Or aren’t Afghans real people?

  5. Nikki says:

    The protests in Afghanistan over the inadvertent burning of the Koran by American troops have claimed their first victims:

    Doug, please correct this line. Either add “American” before “victims” or note that 7 Afghans have also died. You’re doing this on purpose, aren’t you?

  6. Jenos Idanian says:

    Obviously, an apology for these troops’ deaths is in order.

    I’m just not sure who should be doing the apologizing. Since the original “offense” was ours, shouldn’t we apologize for this, too?

    During the Mohammed cartoons mess, thousands and thousands of Muslims rioted in protest, killing approximately 100 people.

    During the Newsweek “Koran flushed down a toilet’ fraud tumult, thousands and thousands of Muslims rioted in protest, and at least 15 people were killed.

    Now a couple of books are mishandled (most likely inadvertently, certainly not maliciously) and the body count is already piling up.

    Is there a point where we should stop saying “we’re sorry” for catering to irrational beliefs and violence, and instead say “get over it and grow the F up?”

  7. Carson says:

    “Release the Kraken”

  8. Racehorse says:

    No more Obamagizing!

  9. Turner says:

    Where is the apology to the families of the soldiers?

  10. US Troops Killed Over Quran Burnings as Obama Apologizes

    our president apologized while our soldiers were murdered. burning the QURAN by accident is more important than american and other human lives. SHAME ON HIM. THIS IS NO LEADER OF AMERICA RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG

  11. Even if we show defference to President OBAMA for the apology regarding the ACCIDENTAL buring of the KORAN, we need to get out of AFGHANISTAN NOW. How many more AMERICAN SOLDIERS MUST DIE. ? RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG