Soldier faces hearing on Afghan deaths
A US army soldier accused of gunning down 16 Afghan villagers in a drunken rampage will face the military version of a preliminary hearing today to determine if there is sufficient evidence to send him to a court martial.
Staff Sgt Robert Bales (38), a decorated veteran of four combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, who could face the death penalty if convicted, is accused of walking off his base and opening fire on civilians in their homes in at least two villages in March.
The shooting of mostly women and children in Kandahar province marked the worst civilian slaughter by US forces since the Vietnam War. – (Reuters)