In memory of and sympathy for

At least three civilians killed
Eight civilians injured

on Sunday at about 11 AM, December 3, 2006

in eastern Kandahar city. A Taliban suicide car bomber rammed a British NATO occupation convoy, destroying an armored jeep and wounding three British occupation soldiers of the Royal Marine commandoes and killing 2-3 Afghan civilians. The British troops fled the scene and began firing indiscriminately at anything perceived as hostile, killing at least one civilian and injuring others. Local people and police officers assert that most of the civilian casualties were caused by the Royal Marines’ firing after the car bomb exploded. A rusty white Toyota Corolla was shredded with bullet holes. A man either dead or dying with ghastly injuries to his head, lay sprawled out of the door. A man on a motorcycle about a half-mile from the blast site was gunned-down. Blood poured out of his stomach. His name is Abdul Rahim, 30, a shopkeeper. Amongst others shot by the Marines was Lal Mohammed, a 29-year-old farmer. He said, “I was hit twice in the arm. I was coming from my village to the city and I was in a taxi when they started firing. I did not know what was going on…” Rangeen Ali, 24, was walking to the shop when the car bomb exploded. He explains, “then the soldier started firing. I think they were scarewd. People were getting hurt. My cousin, Abdul Jabbar, was shot in the leg. He is a tuk tuk driver, he has nothing to do with the Taliban.”  Dr. Bashir Ahmed of Kandahar’s main hospital (the Mir Wais) reported that eight Afghans were injured by the British gunfire and had bullet wounds. One of the eight was Essa (Isah) Mohammad, who found himself in Mir Wais hospital (photo by Abdul Razaq Khan carried by CanWest News Service, not the A.P!). Essa recounted, “I was riding a bicycle and a British convoy was going by. At once an explosion occurred. Everybody was running here and there…and I felt that I was hit in the eye. Several wounded people are here in the hospital. Everybody is innocent here.” Another hospitalized victim, Isah Mohammad said he was driving through Kandahar with his cousin when the British occupation convoy passed them. Mohammad in his early 30’s was hit in the shoulder and right leg, explaining “the convoy was coming and there was some gunfire, but I thought it was a wedding ceremony…when they got closer, they started shooting at us.” His uncle, Gahfoor Aqa, had harsh words for NATO troops, saying they "are always saying they're coming to rebuild our country. But instead they are shooting our children," he said. Said Ahmed, 30, a baker said he ran into his shop when he saw British soldiers coming down the street shouting and firing guns. Ahmed said, “I saw one motorbike driver get shot, and he fell down onto the ground.” Umer Jan, 38, owner of an electronics shop, described how people ran away from the British convoy: “I saw the NATO forces firing their guns on civilians. I saw people leaving their vehicles and bicycles and running away…from both sides, civilians are the victims - from the bombing, and after the bombing. I don’t know what we should do.”

On December 4th some of the injured died in the hospital, sparking public protests on December 5th. Not surprisingly, the British occupation force spokesperson (and the U.S. mainstream corporate press) focused upon the civilians who died in the suicide car attack but was silent about subsequent indiscriminate firing by British troops. As I have long argued, for the U.S. (and now NATO) some bodies are worthy of mention and counting, others not.

 Killed and injured by British 45th Commando Royal Marines