In memory of

  (Follow-up to report of October 21-24, 2006 which described U.S. assault upon villages in Panjwayi District)

 

 Abdullah Shah’s wife, Miamoto

Abdullah Shah’s 3 sons,

13 grandchildren, two daughters-in-law and a cousin

(a total of twenty innocent civilians)

killed at 2:30 A.M. in the morning of October 25, 2006

in the village of Lakani in the Panjwayi district of Kandahar Province. A journalist from Germany’s Der Spiegel (not the Associated Press or the Washington Post), Susanne Koelbl, recently wrote about what had transpired in the small desert village of Lakani, “The grave is 14 meters long. The white flags with golden characters flutter in the wind at the tops of bamboo poles. The inscriptions are verses from the Koran meant to guide the dead into the afterlife. Abdullah Shah stands alone in the Da Mirwais mini Hadira cemetery in western Kandahar, his hands raised to the sky. After completing his prayers, the old man strokes his face and his white beard, as ritual requires. Twenty people are buried beneath the mound of earth at Shah's feet: his wife Miamato, his three sons, 13 grandchildren, two daughters-in-law and a cousin. They died in Lakani, a village in the embattled Panjwai district in southern Afghanistan, at 2:30 in the morning on October 25, 2006. Their lives were extinguished by fire from the 30 mm guns of an American A-10 ground attack aircraft, aka Warthog. Prior to the killings, helicopters had already been circling the skies over Lakani for days. When the bombs began falling, patriarch Abdullah Shah ordered his family to seek shelter in a remote mud hut. By 2 a.m., when things had calmed down, the family decided to return to the village. But the A-10 gunners, peering through their night-vision goggles, couldn't tell the difference between civilians and fighters. Anything that moved was their target. The orders were clear: The Taliban were to be removed from the region…Now, though, Abdullah Shah's farm in Lakani is abandoned. The chickens, sheep and cows are gone, and Shah doesn't even know whether they were stolen or simply ran away. Distant relatives in a neighboring village village have taken him in temporarily.”

Killed by an American A-10 Warthog attack aircraft in the middle of the night