US Kills at Least Eight Afghan Police in Bungled Airstrike

Attacks Destroyed Police Post Which Taliban Was Attacking

Afghan officials are reporting that the battle over the Uruzgan Province capital of Tarin Kot isn’t going so great, and the US warplanes that are supposed to be helping them fend off the offensive apparently aren’t doing so hot either, with officials confirming at least eight Afghan police killed in a bungled US airstrike.

The Taliban was in the process of attacking a police post when an airstrike was called in, but instead of hitting the Taliban, US planes attacked the police post repeatedly. Officials say the first strike killed a single policeman, and that seven more arrived after the base was hit the first time and were slain in a subsequent airstrike.

NATO confirmed the attack but denied having any information on who they’d actually killed. They did, however, appear dismissive of the report that they were police, confirming two strikes and insisting that the people they were targeting were “a threat” to Afghan forces.

The Taliban has been advancing against Uruzgan’s capital for weeks now, and Afghan officials say 38 police posts were overrun in the last 2 days. This is one of several major Taliban offensives ongoing at present, with other pushes in the Helmand and Kunduz Provinces.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.