Saturday, February 27, 2010

Yesterday's bombing

I heard the boom - early in the morning. I pretended as long as I could that it was a sonic boom: that's what loud sky noises are in South Carolina. Not here. Here it's the sound of a bomb - in this case a car bomb.

Then came the ding ding of my cell phone and the text message from security:

"There has been a large explosion and gunfire heard in the Shar e naw area; all international staff are restricted to their guesthouses until further notice."

and ...

"Early reports suggest that at least three attackers stormed the Safi Landmark Hotel/Kabul City Center. It is understood that one BBIED detonated near the entrance and SAF is still being heard."

Those messages were the limit of the information that we, in this guesthouse, received all day. We had no Internet access. Our communication to the outside Kabul world was through a phone call to one of our roommates from his friends in Nigeria! I heard from an escort that it was 'very bad.' And that 'some Indians had been killed,' but that was the limit of my Dari and his English.

Today Internet back and finally some news: reports say 16 or 17 people died, mostly Indian nationals. Car bomb and suicide bomber, buildings wrecked, Another sad sad day for Afghanistan.

The Taliban have claimed responsibility for the killings.

Yesterday was the Prophet Mohammad's birthday.