Prince Harry pinned down by a Taliban leader after his account of his missions in Afghanistan: “Those you killed were human beings”
Prince Harry, in a book to be published next week, reveals the exact number of people he killed during his two missions in Afghanistan. “My number is 25. It’s not a number that fills me with satisfaction, but I’m not ashamed of it either,” he wrote in his book, the Spanish version of which went on sale a few hours Thursday. before being removed.
He says he considered these people as “chess pieces” removed from the game, as his training intended, because it is impossible to kill a target “if you consider it a person”.
“Mr. Harry! Those you killed were not chess pieces, they were human beings” who had families, senior Taliban operative Anas Haqqani said on Friday, accusing the prince of “crimes of war”. “But the truth is what you say: our innocent people were like chess pieces for your soldiers and for your military and political leaders,” he added. “But, despite everything, you lost at this game”.
Afghan government spokesman Bilal Karimi also criticized the issue. “These crimes are not limited to Harry, but every occupying power has committed such crimes in our country,” he wrote on Twitter. “Afghans will never forget the crimes of the occupiers,” he continued.
“You must shut up!”
Harry served 10 years in the British Army, ending his career as a Captain. He was sent to Afghanistan twice, first in 2007 and 2008, a period during which he was responsible for coordinating air attacks, then again in 2012 and 2013 as a helicopter gunship pilot.
Cameras mounted on the front of the helicopter made it possible to judge the success of the missions and also to determine precisely how many people he had killed. He defended his actions by the attacks of September 11, 2001 in the United States, believing that the enemies he was fighting in Afghanistan had committed a crime against humanity.
His account was also criticized in the United Kingdom. “We love you Prince Harry, but you must shut up!” tweeted Ben McBean, a former Royal Marines who lost an arm and a leg in Afghanistan in 2008 and whom the Duke of Sussex describes in his book as a ” true hero”.
Another former member of the British army, Colonel Richard Kemp, deemed Prince Harry’s remarks “misguided”. The former commander of British special forces in Afghanistan finds it dangerous that Meghan Markle’s husband suggests that enemies are worth less than human beings. “This is dangerous for two reasons: first, this idea could incite Taliban supporters or sympathizers to try to kill him. Fortunately, I think he is well surrounded at the security level, so let’s hope it doesn’t go that far. Then the other problem is that Harry presents it as if the British Army is teaching its soldiers to view their enemies as less than human. This is not the case,” Richard Kemp continued to Sky News, “Such statements could incite some people to attempt to attack British soldiers anywhere in the world.”
A criticism shared by reserve colonel Tim Collins, who took part in the war in Iraq, to the website of the British army. “Harry has now turned against his other family, the military,” he lamented. “It’s not how we behave in the army, it’s not how we think,” he claimed of the prince’s account of the fighters he had killed. He called the book “a tragic money-making scam”.
This is not the first time Prince Harry has sparked controversy over his involvement in operations in Afghanistan. In 2013, he noted that killing rebel fighters was like playing a video game for a helicopter pilot.
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