Ali Safi and Jonathan S. Landay
April 19, 2012
KABUL, Afghanistan — Videos and pictures that the Taliban have posted online purportedly show the insurgents who staged this week’s attacks in Kabul and three provinces, with two fighters declaring that the suicide missions were to avenge the inadvertent burning of Qurans and the alleged massacre of villagers by U.S. troops. The material is highly stylized, perhaps indicating that the operations were more for propaganda purposes than military gain.
“We will take revenge for the holy Quran from non-Muslims. They have burned our holy Quran. We will take revenge for the same holy Quran, and also we will take revenge for those children and women that they killed in Kandahar a few days ago,” a teenage fighter dressed in a white Islamic burial outfit said in poor English on one video.
Insurgents entered supposedly tightly guarded Kabul and three provincial centers undetected Sunday and fired from buildings on government and foreign installations, including the U.S. Embassy, sparking gun battles with Afghan security forces. Two of the clashes lasted about 18 hours.