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Hullabaloo


Thursday, November 05, 2015

 
The hospital attack in Kunduz from the inside

by digby


Well this will certainly help you sleep tonight. It's a recitation of events at the Doctors Without Borders (MSF) hospital attack in Afghanistan, Via Shadowproof:

“MSF staff recall that the first room to be hit was the ICU [intensive care unit], where MSF staff were caring for a number of immobile patients, some of whom were on ventilators. Two children were in the ICU. MSF staff were attending to these critical patients in the ICU at the time of the attack and were directly killed in the first airstrikes or in the fire that subsequently engulfed the building. Immobile patients in the ICU burned in their beds.”

The review further recounts, “After hitting the ICU, the airstrikes then continued from the east to west end of the main hospital building. The ICU, archive, laboratory, ER, x-ray, outpatient department, mental health and physiotherapy departments as well as the operating theaters were all destroyed in this wave after wave of strikes.”

“After the first strike, MSF medical teams working in the operating theaters ran out of the OT [occupational therapy room] and sought shelter in the sterilization room. The two patients on the operating table in the OTs
were killed in the airstrikes.”

One MSF nurse showed up to the administrative building “covered from head to toe in debris and blood with his left arm hanging from a small piece of tissue after having suffered a traumatic amputation in the blast.” Staff immediately attempted to treat the nurse, who was bleeding from his left eye and oropharynx (the part of the throat behind the mouth).

Staff heard a propeller plane that sounded like an AC-130, the aircraft which was reported to have circled the MSF hospital.

“Many of those interviewed describe massive explosions, sufficient to shake the ground. These bigger explosions were most frequently described as coming in concentrated volleys. MSF staff also described shooting coming from the plane.”

The review recounts how staff were gunned down by the aircraft, as they tried to flee the main hospital building.

“Some accounts mention shooting that appears to follow the movement of people on the run,” according to the review. “MSF doctors and other medical staff were shot while running to reach safety in a different part of the compound. One MSF staff member described a patient in a wheelchair attempting to escape from the inpatient department when he was killed by shrapnel from a blast. An MSF doctor suffered a traumatic amputation to the leg in one of the blasts. He was later operated on by the MSF team on a make-shift operating table on an office desk where he died.”

“Other MSF staff describe seeing people running while on fire and then falling unconscious on the ground. One MSF staff was decapitated by shrapnel in the airstrikes.”

There is more but I really couldn't read on.

This is a preliminary look at the internal report being prepared by Doctors Without Borders. they do not comment on how the attack may have occurred or why it was ordered. They do swear that it was not some kind of "Taliban base" as some have claimed.

I did not know that they were attacked by an airship shooting people as they ran. I don't know why that makes it worse. But somehow it does.

HOrrifying.