Anti-American riots swept Kandahar yesterday after American troops opened fire on a passenger bus, killing at least 4 civilians and wounding 18. Accounts of the incident—which deals a massive blow to NATO's hopes of winning over the local population before its upcoming offensive in the area—vary widely. NATO says troops opened fire after the bus ignored warnings to stop, but some witnesses say it had already pulled over, the Independent reports.
President Hamid Karzai—condemned by protesters for failing to protect Afghan civilians from foreign troops—said the shooting was "unjustifiable," while provincial officials called for those responsible to be punished. Gen. Stanley McChrystal told troops at a video conference last month that while he had every sympathy for those forced to make snap decisions, none of the many shootings at US checkpoints during his time in command was necessary.
(Read more Kandahar stories.)