Afghan My Lai — Robert Bales was not alone
March 31, 2012 § 7 Comments
That is according to Afghan child witnesses interviewed by Yalda Hakim for Australia’s SBS Dateline. (h/t Shaheen)
Hakim, who was born in Afghanistan and immigrated to Australia as a child, is the first international journalist to interview the surviving witnesses. She said American investigators tried to prevent her from interviewing the children, saying her questions could traumatize them. She said she appealed to village leaders, who arranged for her to interview the witnesses.
Noorbinak, 8, told Hakim that the shooter first shot her father’s dog. Then, Noorbinak said in the video, he shot her father in the foot and dragged her mother by the hair. When her father started screaming, he shot her father, the child says. Then he turned the gun on Noorbinak and shot her in the leg.
“One man entered the room and the others were standing in the yard, holding lights,” Noorbinak said in the video.
A brother of one victim told Hakim that his brother’s children mentioned more than one soldier wearing a headlamp. They also had lights at the end of their guns, he said.
“They don’t know whether there were 15 or 20, however many there were,” he said in the video. [...]
Gen. Karimi, assigned by Afghan President Hamid Karzai to investigate the murders, told Hakim that he, too, wonders whether Bales acted alone and how he could left the base without notice.
“Village elders said several soldiers took part and that there is boot prints in the area,” Karimi told Hakim. He said villagers told him that they saw three or four individuals kneeling and that helicopters were overhead during the rampage.
“To search for him?” Karimi said he asked them.
“No,” he said they told him. “They were there from the very beginning.”