Adding further intrigue to the impending charges against Staff Sgt. Robert Bales for the massacre of 16 Afghan civilians in Kandahar Province, his lawyer now says Bales “doesn’t remember” carrying out any massacres that night.
Bales’s attorney, John Henry Browne, went on to say that Bales appeared “confused” and that he had memories of that evening before and after the massacre, but nothing during the time of the attack. Bales apparently also downplayed the reports he was drunk, saying he had only a “few sips” of alcohol.
In commenting on the impending charges, Browne seemed to think the military had an uphill battle, noting that “they don’t have much proof of anything” and that the military hasn’t provided him with any evidence.
The military’s version has Bales wandering off base, hitting two villages some 8 km apart, massacring 16 Afghan civilians and burning a number of their corpses, then returning and immediately being captured by troops. The US insists Bales acted alone, while the Afghan government’s probe says more than a dozen of attackers were involved. Bales’s lack of memory will make it even more difficult to sort out this major difference.