'All My Dreams Are Buried Under A Pile Of Dust Now,' Says Grieving Afghan | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

'All My Dreams Are Buried Under A Pile Of Dust Now,' Says Grieving Afghan

Along with the latest news about the U.S. Army staff sergeant who allegedly murdered 16 Afghan civilians on March 11, we want to note this heart-breaking quote from a man who says he lost almost all his family in that massacre:

"Like anyone, I wanted my children to be doctors, engineers — important people. All my dreams are buried under a pile of dust now," farmer Muhammad Wazir tells NPR's Quil Lawrence on today's Morning Edition.

"My little boy, Habib Shah, is the only one left alive, and I love him very much," Wazir added. All told, Wazir says, he lost his mother, his wife, his four daughters, two of his sons, a brother, a nephew and a sister-in-law.

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, 38, is now at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas and NPR's Tom Bowman tells us that formal charges could be brought against him in the next few days.

Once again this morning, as in other recent days, we're learning more about him:

-- "Bales defrauded an Ohio couple of more than $600,000 when he served as their stock broker in 2000, according to records of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority," according to Bloomberg News. "An arbitrator in 2003 ordered Bales to pay more than $1.3 million in damages to Gary Liebschner and his wife of Carroll, Ohio."

"There's no sign he ever paid what he owned," NPR's Martin Kaste reports for our Newscast Desk.

-- Bales' wife Karilyn, in a statement posted by The Seattle Times, said her family sends "condolences to all the people of the Panjawai District ... especially to the parents, brothers, sisters and grandparents of the children who perished. ... What has been reported is completely out of character of the man I know and admire."

-- Attorney John Henry Browne, who is representing Bales, says the soldier remembers little about the night of March 11, The Associated Press writes. But, NPR's Kaste adds, Browne also said he would not use the word "amnesia" to describe Bales' state of mind.

At 10 a.m. ET, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. John Allen, is due to testify before the House Armed Services Committee. The session is to be webcast. According to the AP, in his prepared testimony Allen gives "no hint of an accelerated timetable for withdrawing U.S. combat troops in the face of increasing political and public pressure to end the military mission."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

As Summer Winds Down, Wistful Dreams Of A 'Lost Estate'

The scent of fresh pencils is in the air, and homework assignments are around the corner. In honor of back-to-school season, author Alexander Aciman recommends The Lost Estate by Henri Alain-Fournier.
NPR

A Food Crisis Follows Africa's Ebola Crisis

Food shortages are emerging in the wake of West Africa's Ebola epidemic. Market shelves are bare and fields are neglected because traders can't move and social gatherings are discouraged.
WAMU 88.5

McDonnell Corruption Trial: Former Gov Defends Relationship With Jonnie Williams

On the stand today, the former Virginia governor defended his relationship with the businessman at the heart of the trial, saying it was appropriate.
NPR

Coming Soon To A Pole Near You: A Bike That Locks Itself

Cyclists may soon have a convenient way to discourage bike thieves, thanks to new designs that use parts of the bikes themselves as locks.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.