Pentagon officials have confirmed the start of an investigation into a Saturday airstrike in Afghanistan, which reportedly killed not just the Taliban commander it targeted, but also six hostages who were held in Taliban custody.
The Pentagon has confirmed the strike took place, near the northern city of Kunduz, one of a handful of strikes launched since the Obama Administration loosened the rules of engagement to allow an escalation in direct US involvement in the Afghan War.
The Taliban’s spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid, confirmed that the strike killed Mullah Janat Gul Osmani and four other fighters, along with six captured Afghan soldiers who were being held in the same area.
The Afghan police denied the reports, claiming the airstrike killed Mullah Janat and five other Taliban, and that the Taliban has killed the soldiers afterwards out of spite, and then tried to blame the US for it. The US investigation, however, suggests that the Taliban’s narrative is potentially correct, though whether we ever get the results of that investigation publicly, as always, remains to be seen.