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Afghan 'insider' attack at base kills 1, wounds 15

Associated Press

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- A man dressed in an Afghan army uniform opened fire Tuesday on foreign troops at a military base, killing at least one U.S. soldier and wounding 15 people, among them a German brigadier general and "about a dozen" Americans, authorities said.

Details about the attack at Camp Qargha, a base west of the capital, Kabul, weren't immediately clear. Gen. Mohammmad Zahir Azimi, a spokesman for Afghanistan's Defense Ministry, said a "terrorist in an army uniform" opened fire on both local and international troops. Azimi said the shooter had been killed and that three Afghan army officers were wounded.

U.S. General Killed in Afghanistan

A U.S. official said one American soldier was killed and "about a dozen" of the wounded were Americans, but declined to comment further. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss details of the attack by name on the record.

Germany's military said 15 NATO soldiers were wounded in an assault launched "probably by internal attackers." The wounded included a German brigadier general, who the German military said was receiving medical treatment and was "not in a life-threatening condition."

NATO said it was investigating the attack, which Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned as "cowardly."

It is "an act by the enemies who don't want to see Afghanistan have strong institutions," Karzai said in a statement.

Qargha is known as "Sandhurst in the sand"- referring to the famed British military academy - as British forces oversaw building the officer school and its training program. In a statement, the British Defense Ministry said it was investigating the incident and that "it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time."

After the shooting, a soldier in a NATO convoy leaving Camp Qargha fired his pistol in an apparent warning shot in the vicinity of Associated Press journalists and pedestrians nearby. No one was wounded.

The Qargha shooting comes as so-called "insider attacks" - incidents in which Afghan security turn on their NATO partners - largely dropped last year. In 2013, there were 16 deaths in 10 separate attacks. In 2012, such attacks killed 53 coalition troops in 38 separate attacks.

Such "insider attacks" are sometimes claimed by the Taliban insurgency as proof of their infiltration. Others are attributed to personal disputes or resentment by Afghans who have soured on the continued international presence in their country more than a dozen years after the fall of the Taliban's ultra-conservative Islamic regime.

Foreign aid workers, contractors and other civilians in Afghanistan are increasingly becoming targets of violence as the U.S.-led military coalition continues a withdrawal to be complete by the end of the year.

In eastern Paktia province, an Afghan police guard also exchanged fire Tuesday with NATO troops near the governor's office, provincial police chief Gen. Zelmia Oryakhail said. The guard was killed in the gunfight, he said. It wasn't clear if the two incidents were linked and police said they were investigating the incident.

Meanwhile Tuesday, a NATO helicopter strike targeting missile-launching Taliban militants killed four civilians in western Afghanistan, an Afghan official said Tuesday. NATO said they were investigating the attack.

The attack in western Herat province comes as civilian casualties from NATO attacks remain a contentious issue across the country. Almost 200 people protested against NATO in Herat on Tuesday, carrying the bodies of the dead civilians into the provincial capital and demanding an investigation.

In a statement, NATO said it was aware of the attack and was investigating, without elaborating.

Civilians increasingly find themselves under fire as the 2001 U.S.-led war draws to a close, as Afghan forces take the lead in operations targeting the Taliban. The civilian death toll in the war in Afghanistan rose 17 percent for the first half of this year, the United Nations reported in July. The U.N. said 1,564 civilians were killed from January through June, compared with 1,342 in the first six months of 2013. It blamed

Insurgents were responsible for 74 percent of the casualties, the U.N. said, while pro-government forces were responsible for 9 percent, government forces 8 percent and foreign troops just 1 percent. The rest could not be attributed to any group.

Karzai has repeatedly clashed with NATO over civilian casualties and strongly condemned the helicopter attack Tuesday.

Afghan security forces also increasingly find themselves under attack as the planned foreign troop withdrawal draws near. On Tuesday, a police car struck a roadside bomb in the eastern province of Nouristan, killing three officers, provincial police chief Abdul Baqi Nouristani said. Two other roadside bombs in northern Sari Pul province killed three people, including a district police chief and his driver, deputy provincial police chief Sakhi Dad Haidary said.

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fivemillion August 05 2014 at 10:16 AM

"Al Queda is on the run and GM is alive!"

"If you like your healthplan you can keep it!"

"Not a smidgen of corruption"

Flag Reply +45 rate up
13 replies
bobgaul120 August 05 2014 at 10:18 AM

Damn, now o'bummer is gonna have to draw another red line.

Flag Reply +26 rate up
3 replies
tmlbtb August 05 2014 at 10:20 AM

What it proves is, those people over there are angry, mean, primitive people who lack a good education. Get out of there, we're trying to bring a few countries out of the stone age into the 21st. Century. Can't be done. It will take them a thousand more years to become a decent civilization.

Flag Reply +23 rate up
5 replies
barbgre1 August 05 2014 at 10:18 AM

It only shows that those affiliated with terrorist groups are uncivilized and untrustworthy.

Flag Reply +20 rate up
Greenie August 05 2014 at 10:19 AM

Their like RATS you just can't get rid of them no matter how hard to try.

Flag Reply +19 rate up
3 replies
skitzlpk August 05 2014 at 10:22 AM

Let's see, let's hear it again Obama. "We've got the terrorists on the run"? Isn't that how you put it after the singular mission of killing OBL?

Yeah, looks like it chump. Great job brotha!!

Now tell that to ISIS, they say they're coming to see you in the White House. Why do I find myself almost cheering for them in that respect? Ha!

Flag Reply +17 rate up
5 replies
Janice August 05 2014 at 10:18 AM

When it's our people and it's time to fly over with a LARGE bomb. Stop playing goodie two shoe. Before it comes here. Better to do it now than later.

Flag Reply +16 rate up
1 reply
chuckwillswidows Janice August 05 2014 at 10:49 AM

As long as we have Islamic azz kisserz in the House that won't happen.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
garyscheuer chuckwillswidows August 05 2014 at 10:57 AM

If Reagan hadn't trained and supplied them, Al Qaeda would be a bunch of dead goat herders by now. so who's the REAL Islamic azz kisser?

Flag 0 rate up
ram4131 August 05 2014 at 10:29 AM

Trillions spent, how many killed and wounded? So we pack up and leave. In 6 months Afghanistan will be no different than before we got there.
I don't get it.

Flag Reply +14 rate up
3 replies
pat August 05 2014 at 10:51 AM

Has he got a fundraiser scheduled today? Let's see if he takes a whole minute to address this before launching into his own attacks on his enemies, the Republicans..

Flag Reply +6 rate up
manhattantrophy August 05 2014 at 11:22 AM

More deaths on Obamas hand. Hey liblab sheep: I though once OBL was "supposedly" killed, terrorism would end. I thought that Obama would bring stability into the world......ROMNEY was right!!! You sheep voted for Obama because of handouts as usual, like most liberal morons

Flag Reply +5 rate up
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