Human bomb attack near base in Afghanistan "aimed" at Cheney, misses

NY Times:

A suicide bomber blew himself up this morning outside the main gate of the United States military base at Bagram while Vice President Dick Cheney was inside. Mr. Cheney was not hurt in the attack.

The blast killed and wounded American soldiers and Afghan and Pakistani truck drivers and laborers waiting for access at the gate. The incident was at the first security gate of the base, far from where Mr. Cheney was staying.

The Associated Press reported that the Taliban claimed responsibility and said Mr. Cheney was the target of the attack.

There were conflicting reports on the number of casualties. A report from the American military in Afghanistan said that four people were killed, including the suicide bomber. NATO said that three people were killed, including an American soldier and a coalition soldier.

An Afghan guard at the base said he counted up to 15 dead at the scene, including three American soldiers, and 12 others were wounded.

Mr. Cheney made an unscheduled overnight stay at the Bagram airbase, just north of Kabul, Monday night after his helicopter was grounded by heavy snow and he was unable to make a meeting with President Hamid Karzai in Kabul. The meeting went ahead instead this morning. Mr. Cheney had flown from Pakistan to Bagram and would have flown on to Kabul by helicopter.

Mr.Cheney left Afghanistan today after the two-hour talks with Mr. Karzai at the presidential palace in Kabul, the AFP news agency reported.

This is the full AP report. The AP reporter said he saw at least eight bodies at the scene.

This appears to be part of an al Qaeda/Taliban PR operation more than a serious attempt to kill VP Cheney. In other words they were taking advantage of his visit to generate some news. That is what most of their attacks are aimed at anyway and by having a human bomb attack when there was more media around because of the visit they get more coverage. The fact that the attack failed in its stated purpose is of no consequence to them as long as they get the publicity.

Michelle Malkin looks at some of the disappointment in the left wing fever swamps at the failure of the attacks. I think I will go ahead and challenge their patriotism. Warning--these are left wing sites so expect potty mouth insults.


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