The U.S. soldier alleged to have killed 16 Afghan civilians in a nighttime rampage has been identified as Staff Sgt. Robert Bales of Lake Tapps, Wash. The people of Bales' rural community are bewildered; one neighbor describes him as "just one of the guys."
Melissa Block talks with Martin Kaste about the status of the U.S. soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians in a rampage near his base. The soldier has not been named, but his lawyer has spoken to the press. On Friday, an Army General spoke to reporters at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, near Seattle.
Washington Post columnist has been shown some of the documents seized during the raid that ended with the al-Qaida leader's death. The plot didn't get far, officials tell him, but underscores bin Laden's desire to strike the U.S. again.
Recent events have renewed calls to pull out U.S. troops before a 2014 deadline. Host Michel Martin hears two perspectives: Iraq war veteran Jon Soltz believes the current counterinsurgency strategy isn't yielding enough results, but Gayle Tzemach Lemmon believes if the U.S. pulls out now, Afghan civil society could face serious consequences.
The Taliban has announced it is suspending peace talks with the U.S. At the same time, Afghan President Hamid Karzai demanded the U.S. pull troops out of rural areas by next year following a deadly shooting spree by an American soldier. These signals have come at an already difficult time for the U.S. in Afghanistan and further complicate the U.S. exit strategy.
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