A day after an American soldier allegedly killed at least 16 civilians in a shooting in southern Afghanistan, images of the victims are being posted by Afghans on blogs and social networking sites, the New York Times’ the Lede blog reports. Nine of the 16 victims were children, some who suffered gunshot wounds to the head or scars of burning, and many of the images are very graphic.
BBC monitoring found that local press coverage of the story included graphic imagery of the bodies. While local TV agency TOLO News pixilated the images of the children, Pajhwok Afghan News broadcast uncensored ones. Their video is after the jump but please note that there are graphic, upsetting images inside.
The Post’s Ernesto Londono reports that the killings were only the latest in a “cascade of missteps and blunders that have shaken Afghans’ confidence in the United States.” But this time, Waheed Omer, the Afghan president’s former spokesman told Londono: “I am concerned like never before.”
(WARNING: Images after the jump are very graphic and may upset some readers.)
Afghans for Peace, an international alliance of Afghans, posted a series of graphic photos on their Facebook page Sunday and Monday, including the bodies of an elderly man and child lying side by side. “It’s unacceptable,” one commenter wrote. “Crimes in the name of war against terror, is it not terrorism?” another asked.
But one Afghan journalist and blogger, Ahmad Shuja, argued that Afghans were grieving more than they were angry:
By focusing on “Afghan anger” and “backlash,” ISAF/US is ignoring the hurt, pain and grief in the wake of #KandaharKillings.— Ahmad Shuja (@AhmadShuja) March 12, 2012
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