Major Bombings strike Kabul, Afghanistan – Hundreds wounded, One American killed
One American soldier was killed and at least two wounded in a bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan on Friday. 8 contractors were also killed, all of which were reportedly Afghans. It was just one bombing in a day of deadly attacks in the Capital city that left hundreds wounded, and many dead.
1:00 a.m. Friday
A massive truck bomb detonated in a residential neighborhood of Kabul, injuring 240 people, killing at least 15. The blast “flattened” an entire city block, according to reports.
After that attack, a man dressed in a police uniform detonated a suicide bomb at the Police academy in Kabul, killing approximately 26 recruits and wounding 28. (Totals revised from initial reports of 20 killed and 24 wounded).
10:15 p.m. Friday
Later, a suicide car bomb exploded at the gate of the Special Operations Joint Task Force-Afghanistan base near the Kabul airport. That incident started a fire fight that lasted about two hours, according to Al-Jazeera.
One American soldier was killed and at least two wounded. 8 Afghan contractors were killed at the attack on “Camp Integrity.” At least 10 other Afghans were wounded in the attack. Two of the attackers were killed, according to Stripes. The military has not released the name(s) of the soldiers killed or wounded.
Interesting side note here, “Camp Integrity” is run by Academi, which was once Blackwater. The base contains numerous contractors and special operations personnel from both NATO and Afghanistan.
“Those responsible for suicide and complex attacks in civilian-populated areas can no longer shrug off the disproportionate harm to the civilian population they cause,” UNAMA chief Nicholas Haysom said in a statement. “The Afghan people are resilient, but the suffering caused by these tactics in terms of civilian deaths, injuries, and the loss of family members, is extreme, irreversible and unjustifiable in any terms.”
Taliban-are they fractured?
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid took responsibility for two of the attacks, but not the truck bomb. They “rarely admit” to attacks which have a high number of casualties.
The Taliban has been in the grip of a power struggle after revelations of the death of Mullah Mohammad Omar, the one-eyed former leader of the group. Mullah Akhtar Mansour was named the new leader last week.
There has been speculation as to whether a break away faction may have done this to destroy hopes of a peace deal, or whether it’s just a continuation of the usual violence. Thus far this year, there have been 5,000 civilian casualties in Afghanistan, and 16 American deaths.