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‘Good Friend’ Kills Ahmad Wali Karzai, Brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai


Afghan president’s brother assassinated (NBC “Today,” July 12, 2011) — A powerful brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai was assassinated Tuesday by one of his own bodyguards. NBC’s Atia Abawi reports from Kabul, Afghanistan. (00:45)

Reuters, The Associated Press, and NBC News via
July 12, 2011

KABUL, Afghanistan — Ahmad Wali Karzai, a brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai and one of the most powerful men in Afghanistan, was assassinated by a bodyguard and friend on Tuesday, officials and family members told journalists.

He was a controversial figure, but his assassination will leave a dangerous power vacuum in Kandahar, the Taliban’s birthplace and a focus of recent efforts by a “surge” of U.S. troops to turn the tide against the insurgency. …

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in a text message sent to NBC News’ Kabul office.

“Today in Kandahar city, Hamid Karzai’s brother was killed during the Operation al-Badr,” Taliban spokesman Qari Yousif said. “We hired a person by the name of Sadar Mohammad, who was hired for this job for some time now. Ahmad Wali Karzai was punished for all his wrongdoings.”

The president’s half brother had been shot with a AK-47 by “a good friend” at his home in Kandahar, NBC News reported. …

Ahmad Wali was seen as an extension of his brother’s reach in the country’s volatile south and a power broker that NATO officials depended on to keep the relative peace in the area, according to NBC News’ Atia Abawi. …

Ahmad Wali had been accused of corruption and ties to Afghanistan’s huge opium trade that helps fund the Taliban-led insurgency. He had denied the accusations.

Ahmad Wali returned to Afghanistan after the ouster of the Taliban government, leaving behind a career as a restaurateur in Chicago to eventually become probably the most powerful man in Kandahar. …

Ahmad Wali’s behind-the-scenes efforts to bring some members of the Taliban back into the government’s fold could well founder as a result of the assassination, Abawi added. …

The United Nations said in a recent quarterly report that over half of all assassinations across Afghanistan since March were in Kandahar.

Ahmed Wali has been the reported target of multiple assassination attempts.

In May 2009, his motorcade was ambushed by insurgents firing rockets and machine guns in eastern Nangarhar province. One of his bodyguards was killed, but he was not harmed.

That attack came less than two months after four Taliban suicide bombers stormed Kandahar’s provincial council office, killing 13 people in an assault that Ahmed Wali said was aimed at him. …

Full story


Related reports on this site

Image: Aerial view of Palm Jumeirah in Dubai
An aerial view shows the Palm Jumeirah development in Dubai in December. Villas purchased in the development are part of the Afghanistan bank scandal. (Photo credit: Matthias Seifert / Reuters)

Bottomless U.S. War Price Tag Hits $4 Trillion (June 29, 2011)

Breathtaking Afghan Corruption (Dec. 2, 2010)

Run on Bank in Afghanistan (Sept. 2, 2010)


7/15/11 Update

Turban Suicide Bomber Kills Afghan Cleric, Four Others At Karzai Funeral

Afghan police set up a roadblock in front of the Red mosque in Kandahar city, after a suicide blast inside the mosque
Afghan police set up a roadblock in front of the Red mosque in Kandahar city after a suicide blast inside the mosque, July 14, 2011. (Photo credit: Ahmad Nadeem / Reuters)

By Ismail Sameem

July 14, 2011

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — A suicide attacker who appears to have concealed his explosives inside a turban killed a senior cleric and at least four other people on Thursday at a funeral service for the assassinated brother of the Afghan president in southern Kandahar city.

At least 15 people were also wounded in the midday attack at the city’s Red Mosque, the Interior Ministry said. Cabinet ministers and relatives of President Hamid Karzai had been among the mourners, but escaped unscathed.

The attack came just two days after a trusted family associate killed Ahmad Wali Karzai, probably the most powerful and controversial man in southern Afghanistan, at his home.

His death has created a dangerous power vacuum in Kandahar, that some fear could spark a wave of greater violence in an already volatile city. Kandahar was the site of over half of all targeted killings in Afghanistan between April and June. …

The attack came on the same day that the United Nations said the first half of 2011 was the deadliest six months for civilians in Afghanistan since the decade-old war began, and while the number of insurgent suicide attacks was largely unchanged, the number of civilians they killed soared by half. …

Full story


7/28/11 Update

Bomb Concealed in Turban Kills Kandahar Mayor

Death comes two weeks after assassination of president’s brother

A blood-stained turban is seen at the site where Kandahar City mayor Ghulam Haidar Hamidi was killed after a suicide blast on July 27, 2011. (Photo credit: Ahmad Nadeem / Reuters)

July 27, 2011

KANDAHAR — The mayor of Afghanistan’s southern Kandahar city was killed in a suicide bomb attack on Wednesday, officials said, just two weeks after the controversial and powerful brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai was assassinated in the same city.

Mayor Ghulam Haidar Hamidi was killed when a suicide bomber detonated his explosives in a corridor near Hamidi’s office, said Zalmay Ayoubi, the spokesman for the Kandahar provincial governor.

“It appears the bomber was carrying the bomb in his turban,” Ayoubi said. …

Kandahar was the site of over half of all targeted killings in Afghanistan between April and June, found a U.N. report.

Full story


FROM THE ARCHIVES: One Year Ago — July 13, 2010

Iraq-Afghanistan Casualties

One year ago today, I provided my weekly report of U.S. military deaths in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Army Pfc. Jacob A. Dennis, 22, of Powder Springs, Ga., died July 3, 2010 at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Landstuhl, Germany, of injuries sustained June 30 in a weapons system accident at Forward Operating Base Lane, Zabul province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.

The Associated Press reported that Pfc. Dennis enjoyed cooking and was involved in Boy Scouts and youth ministry at Roswell Street Baptist Church.

Jacob Dennis graduated from North Cobb Christian School in Kennesaw, Ga., where he played soccer and ran track. He was also involved in theater and the school band. He married his wife, Allysha, in June 2009. Survivors include his parents, a brother and a sister.


FROM THE ARCHIVES: Two Years Ago — July 13, 2009

Concern About Secret CIA Program


CIA under scrutiny for plans to kill bin Laden (NBC Nightly News, July 13, 2009) — New details emerged on Monday about a CIA plan to try to capture and kill al-Qaida members that was withheld from Congress at the direction of former Vice President Dick Cheney. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports. (02:44)

Two years ago today, on July 13, 2009, I reported that congressional Democrats were demanding an investigation over disclosures that a secret CIA program to capture or kill al-Qaida leaders was concealed from Congress for eight years, perhaps at the behest of former Vice President Dick Cheney.

3 Responses to “Afghan President’s Brother Assassinated”
  1. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Will U.S. Leave Afghanistan a Failed State Ruled by Warlords? Says:

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