Each day, news reports remind the world that the evil known as ISIS is not winning. While this is uplifting and needs to be shouted from the rooftops, the fact is that Daesh terrorists and those like them still hold a lot of power and can cause horrendous misery, as KTLA 5 reported today.
The terrorist’s fury knew no battle lines as 10 ” journalists were among 29 people killed in a suicide attack in Kabul Monday.” Ironically, Shah Marai was one of the pronounced dead, a writer who had spoken of the risks taken by journalists there shortly before the birth of his sixth child. The numbers have now risen to 31.
Sadly, all six of his children, including his newborn daughter, now have no father.
A bomber was posing “as a TV cameraman” and “detonated a second bomb at the site of an earlier explosion.” Both acts of terror were the works of ISIS.
The first explosion took place in the Shashdarak section of the city around eight in the morning. This is the area where “the US embassy and Afghan government buildings are located.” While it is always advised to never run towards a blast sight (since terrorists tend to blow up a second device to kill those who do), that is what these brave journalists did upon hearing the detonation. Doing their jobs cost them their lives.
Kabul City Police spokesman Hashmat Stanikzai explained that it was the second bomb blast that was set off by the man posing as a camera person. ISIS called the killer a “martyrdom brother” who used an “explosive belt vest” to murder “apostates” and to hurt others. The bombers were said to be Qaqaa al-Kurdi and Khalil al-Qurshi.
Najib Sharifi, director of the Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (A.F.P.) confirmed at least eight reporters dead.
Global News Director, Michele Leridon gave honor to Marai and those fallen. She tweeted about the murdered journalist’s “extraordinary strength, courage, and generosity.” She also spoke of his “consummate professionalism” and “sensitivity” during his 15 years of service.
Similarly, the A.F.P. referred to the man as a “treasured colleague” and that his untimely passing has caused “a devastating blow” to the news group.
“This is a devastating blow, for the brave staff of our close-knit Kabul bureau and the entire agency. Shah Marai was a treasured colleague who spent more than 15 years documenting the tragic conflict in Afghanistan for AFP.” it was said.
The tweet ended with “condolences to the families of other journalists killed in this terrible attack.”
Making the pain even greater is the fact that 45 others were maimed in the attack, as well, according to the Ministry of Public Health spokesman Wahid Majroh. She confirmed that all of the injured were taken to local hospitals for treatment.
The fallen Marai had written a work called “When All Hope Is Gone” prior to the birth of his little girl and he confessed, “I don’t dare to take my children for a walk. I have five and they spend their time cooped up inside the house. Every morning as I go to the office and every evening when I return home, all I think of are cars that can be booby-trapped, or of suicide bombers coming out of a crowd. I can’t take the risk.”
In light of the terror attacks, his words seem almost haunting as the bombings “close to NATO’s Afghan headquarters, the US embassy, the Presidential palace, the Defense Ministry and the headquarters of Afghanistan’s intelligence services” are reflected on.
The U.S. Ambassador, John Bass, tweeted, “I condemn today’s terrible Kabul attack (and) reaffirm our commitment (to) stand with the Afghan people in their fight for peace (and) security across Afghanistan. We mourn for those murdered, including the brave journalists who stand for truth in the face of violence.”
Russia and the U.S have not agreed on much, but stopping ISIS is a common goal between Mr. Trump and Mr. Putin. Due to this, their numbers have been greatly thinned. However, to conclude that Daesh is no longer able to bring despair is an error in thinking.
As this attack has proven, there is still a lot of work to be done.