View Full Version : U.S. Diplomat Killed In Pakistan Bombing

03-02-2006, 11:29 AM
U.S. diplomat killed in Pakistan bombing



KARACHI, Pakistan -- A suicide attacker rammed a car packed with explosives into a vehicle carrying an American diplomat in Pakistan's largest city, killing the diplomat and three other people before President Bush's visit to Pakistan. Fifty-two people were wounded.

The blast near the U.S. Consulate and the Marriott Hotel propelled cars into the air and flung charred wreckage as far as 200 yards. It shattered windows at the consulate and on all 10 floors of the hotel, and damaged a nearby naval hospital.

Bush condemned the attack and said "terrorists and killers" would not prevent him from going to Pakistan on the final leg of his tour of South Asia.

"We have lost at least one U.S. citizen in the bombing, a foreign service officer, and I send our country's deepest condolences to that person's loved ones and family," Bush said at a news conference in neighboring India without naming the diplomat.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. But previous attacks on Westerners in Karachi have been blamed on al-Qaida-linked Islamic extremist groups. Several suspects have been convicted, but others remain at large.

The explosion, which ripped out a crater 8 feet wide and more than 2 feet deep, tore through the parking lot of the Marriott, which is about 20 yards from the consulate. Ten cars were destroyed. A man's body, with part of the head missing, was flung onto the hotel's second story.

The Marriott Hotel's deputy manager, Shahzad Ashif, said Thursday's blast broke windows on all 10 floors and blew out balcony door latches on the first two floors, but no guests were injured. The hotel was being evacuated and guests moved to other hotels, he said.

Karachi police chief Niaz Sadiqui said the attacker intended to hit the consulate, but a Pakistani paramilitary guard saw him and tried to stop him, so the attacker rammed his car into the diplomat's vehicle instead. The guard also died in the blast.

He said police had found important clues, but he declined to disclose details.

"We have reached the conclusion that it was a suicide attack, and we have found body parts of the attacker," Sadiqui said.

The diplomat's car was blown into the air, across a concrete barrier and onto the grounds of the hotel. The driver, a Pakistani working for the consulate, also died. The other fatality was an unidentified woman.

A counterterrorism official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said the attacker used high-intensity explosives, and the attack was the most powerful blast he had seen in Karachi - a hotbed of Islamic militancy.

A Pakistani Foreign Ministry statement said the bombing was a "horrific terrorist attack" and expressed "deep sadness" over the deaths of the American diplomat and his local driver.

"This senseless act today further fortifies our resolve to fight terrorism," the statement said. "We all must work together to eliminate this terrible menace."

Police initially said two car bombs went off, but provincial police chief Jahangir Mirza said a single bomb may have triggered a second smaller explosion in a burning car.

Some 52 people were injured, including a young Moroccan girl hit by flying debris, provincial government spokesman Salahuddin Haider said. Investigators were trying to get video footage from surveillance cameras at the consulate, he said.

U.S. Embassy spokesman Nida Emmons confirmed that an American and Pakistani employee of the consulate were killed but would not give their names. He said they were still investigating if any other consulate staff were hurt.

Mohammed Ali, who sells cigarettes nearby, said the first explosion occurred at about 9 a.m., knocking him down and flattening his wooden stall.

"Seconds later there was another explosion. We ran away to save our lives," Ali said. "The explosions set cars on fire and there was smoke all around ... I thought the explosions would burst my ear drums."

Mohammed Jameel, a former army colonel who was getting a medical checkup at the naval hospital, said the first explosion was "very intense" and the second one was smaller.

"I saw two burning car seats land in the hospital lawn," he said.

Officials said the bombing could be timed for Bush's visit to Pakistan.

Bush is scheduled to fly on Friday to the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, about 1,000 miles north of Karachi, but his exact arrival time is being kept secret. He made a surprise visit to Afghanistan on Wednesday before going to India.

"All international media are eyeing Pakistan at this time, and terrorists are using this to defame Pakistan and Muslims," provincial Gov. Ishratul Ibab said.

Islamic militants have targeted the U.S. Consulate in Karachi before.

In June 2002, a car bomb killed 14 Pakistanis outside the building, which lies in an upscale district of the sprawling city's downtown.

In March 2004, police defused a huge bomb less than five minutes before it was timed to explode outside the consulate. The bomb was packed in a small van parked on a street near the building.

03-02-2006, 11:52 AM
IF the Muslims really want Amerikkka to pull out of their lives, don't you think they'd lay low??? But as Israel demonstrates---those motherfuckers got no sense. Guess they're still waiting for a MLK---The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it. Through violence you may murder the liar, but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth. Through violence you may murder the hater, but you do not murder hate. In fact, violence merely increases hate. So it goes. Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction.... The chain reaction of evil — hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars — must be broken, or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.