U.S. soldier told to kill women and children in Afghanistan

by portland indymedia Thursday, Jun. 06, 2002 at 6:13 PM

This American soldier says he was specifically ordered to kill women and children in Afghanistan. Isn't that a war crime?

Some U.S. armed forces were told to kill women and children during 'Operation Anaconda' in Afghanistan, according to the Ithacha (NY) Journal, which interviewed a local soldier about his experience there. "'We were told there were no friendly forces,' said [Army Private Matt] Guckenheimer, an assistant gunner with the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum. 'If there was anybody there, they were the enemy. We were told specifically that if there were women and children to kill them.'"

Guckenheimer told the Journal that "he loved learning about tanks and guns and watching battle scenes on TV when he was young." He also mentioned the alienation he noticed in the U.S. upon returning: "After living in a Third World country, where people he didn't know would smile or say hello to him on the streets, it was jarring to return home, where contact among strangers is mostly shunned. 'These people who lived through life, they seemed to be more grounded,' he said. Coming home was like walking back into a 'clueless' society where over-consumption is commonly regarded as the route to happiness, he said."

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Original: U.S. soldier told to kill women and children in Afghanistan