Six people were killed and 87 wounded in coordinated suicide bombing explosions at three sites in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Saturday, targeting a funeral for Mohammad Salim Izadyar. Other reports indicate that as many as 20 people were killed. Izadyar was among six people killed and dozens injured on Friday by Afghan security forces during anti-government demonstrations. The demonstrators were demanding the resignation of Afghanistan's president Ashraf Ghani for failure to protect the people, following a huge truck bombing on Wednesday that kill 100 people and injured hundreds more. President Ashraf Ghani made a televised appeal for national unity: "The country is under attack. We must stay strong and united. Terrorist groups plot to sow chaos. Their aim is to create poor governance and disorder in communities. We must not let ourselves fall into the trap that the enemies have brought to our country." No one has claimed credit for either Wednesday's attack or Saturday's attack. Nonetheless, it's widely believed that the Taliban were responsible, particularly the Haqqani Network, but that neither wants to take credit because of the massive carnage of civilians, contrary to the Taliban's cultivated image of wonderful people merely fighting the infidels in the US and Nato. Khaama Press (Kabul), Tolo News (Kabul) and CNN
# Mourners in Kabul run for safety Saturday after an explosion at a funeral...
*) Kabul, Afghanistan, has now had three deadly incidents in four days, killing hundreds of people and injuring many hundreds more. People are seething with anger at the Ashraf Ghani government.
Wednesday's and Saturday's attacks took place in what are supposed to be the most secure parts of Kabul. Friday's victims were killed by the government security forces. It's clear that no one is immune to the rising violence in the city. Kabul was once considered the most secure part of Afghanistan, but now it seems to be the most dangerous.
As we described yesterday, the attacks on Wednesday and Friday are bringing back memories of Afghanistan's bloody civil war of 1991-96. That war was fought between the Pashtuns in southern Afghanistan versus the Northern Alliance of Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks in northern Afghanistan.
That same ethnic split divided the two sides in Afghanistan during the 2001 Afghan war, where the US attacked the Taliban, with the help and support of Afghanistan's Northern Alliance.
Saturday's funeral was for Salim Izadyar. He is the son of Mohammad Alan Izadyar, the deputy speaker of the Afghan senate and former Northern Alliance warlord who fought against the Taliban in 2001. France 24
Many of the people attending the funeral were honoring Salim, as well as his father. It seems likely that the Taliban were targeting the funeral guests for that reason.
Another person attending the funeral was Abdullah Abdullah, the Chief Executive of Afghanistan. In 2014, at US Secretary of State John Kerry's suggestion, Abdullah and Ghani became "co-presidents" of a sort.
The intention was to resolve a continuing governmental crisis at the time, but an analyst, Baker Atyani, says that the chaos caused by this co-presidency is leading to power struggles within the Afghan government, and that's leading to the violence. Ghani is a Pashtun while Abdullah is of mixed Pashtun-Tajik heritage, having supported the Northern Alliance.
As we wrote yesterday, Afghanistan is entering a generational Awakening era, and this ethnic violence will only increase. The two sides that respectively became the Taliban and the Northern Alliance ended their war in 1996. Those people are at peace, but their children are not.
The dilemma for the US and for that Nato coalition fighting in Afghanistan is how to extricate themselves. The US is still policeman of the world, and completely abandoning Afghanistan would be viewed as similar to the Chicago police force completely abandoning South Chicago because the fighting cannot be stopped. Unfortunately, the alternative is remaining in Afghanistan, even increasing the number of troops, even though there will never be peace between the Taliban and the Northern Alliance.... BBC, Arab News and National Interest