US soldier allegedly kills 16 Afghan civilians
Shooting rampage leaves 9 children, 3 women among the dead
- Duration 9:25
- Date Mar 12, 2012
Shooting rampage leaves 9 children, 3 women among the dead
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And this is -- Fox News alert in a bloody and seemingly senseless attack an American staff sergeant has apparently committed mass murder in Afghanistan.
To the perpetrate are under arrest in Kandahar investigators say at least sixteen civilians have been killed including women and children.
And with relations with that war to our country already strained to the breaking point by the -- of several Muslim holy books.
This atrocity could not have come at a worse time.
Our colleague Conner Powell joins us from Kabul the Afghan capital -- what the hell happened here.
That we understand nine of them were children three of them were women at some point around 3 AM.
An American soldier walked off his face what about 500 or so meters.
-- down some doors and began shooting -- Afghan civilians in their homes.
We've been told that he may have gone in as many as three different homes before he didn't return to his face.
-- it turned himself -- he's now in American custody and American officials are holding him.
They're trying to -- what exactly prompted this attack the secretary of defense Leon Panetta his called Afghan President Hamid Karzai to apologize he.
He has condemned the attack he's also promised President Karzai.
That those responsible the individual responsible will be dealt with you'll be punished not Afghans sentiment here is very very angry at the American community here the American troop presence after the crime -- this -- only -- Fuel that anger in that -- here it is today is a crisis that the American military is.
That is desperately trying to deal with they're trying to get ahead of it but over the next couple days -- -- we'll likely see very intense and violent protests.
How are Karzai the Afghan president has called this unforgivable.
You know I can't see how in the world we can work our way out of this in wake of the Koran burnings that you mentioned.
There must be.
Feeling of deep pessimism right now in Afghanistan among the American forces.
I've never seen more anger and unhappiness among.
Afghans with the international and US presence here at the international community is supposed to be here helping the Afghan civilians.
That is the center of the overall strategy here and there's a real growing feeling among African.
That the American presence the international presence he's doing just the opposite there's a feeling -- -- Did that it did that there he is visit United States is not here to help civilians are not here to help the Afghan government and brought it it's not clear how anyone changes that perception going.
CIA field for UConn are -- our other colleagues there and not Kabul and -- -- that you must feel like you're under house arrest.
With all the bitter feelings on the street but thank you very much believes the they -- Conner Powell law and thanks for being with us.
President Obama today called this attack tragic and shocking and not representative of the exceptional character of our military.
But even as he promises up full investigation.
This incident ladies and gentlemen seems destined.
To hasten our withdrawal from the nation where our forces have been engaged for more than a decade.
Joining me from his -- in Santa -- the former New Mexico governor and US ambassador to the United Nations Bill Richardson joins us.
ambassador assuming this is what it seems to be is there any way on God's Green earth that we can fix this.
Well it's going to be very tough to fix but I believe the administration has taken.
The correct posture after this unspeakable tragedy an apology from the secretary of defense condolences for the president.
And and what I think is very important is.
Let's get a full investigation of why this happened let military justice prevail.
After the burning of the -- on this incident.
It's gonna be tough to to mend the relationship but.
I think it's in the interests of both countries.
To do that.
Be consistent with our withdrawal.
What is a little disappointing year although this President Karzai you know instead of saying let's investigate this yes this is horrible.
These are his people you know he immediately.
Calls it an assassination he immediately.
Is unforgivable well -- it's terrible but I'd like to see a little more.
I mean after all.
We've given him billions of dollars.
Americans have shed blood on behalf of the Afghan people it's terrible what's happened.
But at the same time you don't let's let's get a little break from Karzai who just seems to condemn us at every turn.
I think they break will say mr.
Us getting out of that country as soon as possible but my question for you is will these grim developments in Afghanistan affect our other worries.
In Iran and Syria.
What I think we're doing in Syria makes sense I'd like to see the administration continue.
Imposing stronger sanctions on Syria.
Get China and Russia to join and those sanctions to build a Coalition of the Willing on Syria.
Hasten my son's departure perhaps help the Turks work with the Turks.
Provide sanctuary and safety for those humanitarian.
Quarters -- encourage the saudis in the Turks.
-- some of those rebels I think that's what we can do a fuel run is the loser when it comes to Syria and I think -- ride right now.
Is feeling the enormous heat from the sanctions that we've put on them.
The energy sanctions the economic sanctions so I say let diplomacy let sanctions work before we talk about any.
Military options and strikes on Iran that's what I would do right now.
IE I couldn't agree more I mean not that anyone asked me mr.
The the grim turn of events in Afghanistan shows how difficult it is.
To intervene militarily and to make.
A successful diplomatic conclusion that the military involvement -- -- led -- far as -- or author of the Iran threat president.
-- did a job in the coming nuclear crisis do you fear.
That the Afghanistan mess will off fact going forward our Iranian policy.
The could definitely have -- negative impact there I think this is and this is obviously have very appalling.
Event said today but I think this is an added reason why you wanna avoid.
Presence in and other countries as much as you -- A presence of the military -- Exactly yes.
And so we had a week where do we go do you agree with ambassador Richardson that sanctions are the way I think when it comes to Iran as this -- said you definitely want to use all the resources you have available to you.
In terms of sanctions and tens of all kinds of but it's gotta pressure.
But had been -- day looking at that trend that we've seen what what the past decade along.
There's not that -- promising -- not com Tehran has continued to defy.
And also in Iraq and they continue to suppress own population so what you wanna do you want to empower the opposition this is the very same opposition BM EK.
They expose all the major nuclear sites if Iran have been -- mentality of the authorizing an Iran and unfortunately this State Department continues to maintain them on the terrorist list.
The defying that court's order to to complete his review and and and delist them.
So that's the I think that way to do -- goal rather than just jumping to a military option what just continue fruitless negotiations.
ambassador final question to you you've heard John McCain suggest that we get our air power involved.
The president then chastised.
Not Senator McCain by name but all those who would encourage.
The rapid deployment of military forces to resolve this this crisis -- right -- -- Senator McCain and those who advocate.
The United States using its muscle.
To resolve these crises.
-- the president urging restraint right now.
Well I I believe the president makes more sense.
What we want to do and by the way this gentleman did just spoke I think made a lot of sense.
Embolden people power in Iran which is what we want to happen in Syria.
But I think that right now the Syrian people won't don't want a military intervention.
Where the US can be helpful -- to work with Turkey to work with.
Other nations neighboring nations stood.
Put forth a humanitarian corridor so those refugees can move out to encourage perhaps the saudis and the Turks to arm the rebels.
That's where we can be helpful I think a military intervention in Syria doesn't make sense the Syrian people don't want it.
The situation is very explosive.
I think what you're seeing is Syria and Iran weakening the twins weakening and it's going to be.
Eventually that change the dynamic that -- the game changers for export democracy.
And in the end of the suppression and both countries.
Ambassador Bill Richardson and now they raise it to pars and a thank you gentlemen though.
Thank you very much business.