A NATO airstrike on a residence in southern Afghanistan killed four civilians and four insurgents, an Afghan official and the military alliance said Tuesday.
Afghan authorities and NATO said they had launched a joint investigation into the deaths, which could further strain relations between President Hamid Karzai and his international allies.
According to NATO and provincial government spokesman Dawood Ahmadi, insurgents had fired at NATO troops and Afghan army and police from inside the compound in Helmand province's Nahri Sarraj district on Monday, prompting the airstrike.
The presence of the civilians — two women, an elderly man and a child — was discovered only after the troops entered the compound, NATO said.
Afghan and international forces have launched a joint investigation “to review the factors leading up to this unfortunate loss of civilian life,” NATO said in its statement e-mailed to journalists.
NATO is going to review the factors leading up to this unfortunate loss of life. I love that, unfortunate loss of life, as if it just sort of happened by magic. One minute they were here, the next — poof — they were gone, just like that! The good Lord must have just decided to call them home, children.
So we get three stories of American and NATO war crimes in two days, and it will have less impact on the public than Tiger Woods telling a group of voyeuristic reporters that he’s all better now and ready play golf again. If not Tiger Woods, then something else. There is never a shortage of celebrity gossip to divert the public from the ongoing moral calamity that is US foreign policy.
I tremble for my country when I remember God is just — Thomas Jefferson