The Washington Times Daily - - Nation -

The Pen­tagon is mov­ing rapidly to try to limit the po­lit­i­cal fall­out from the re­cent shoot­ing deaths of 16 Afghan civil­ians by a U.S. sol­dier.

De­fense an­a­lysts say the at­tack is a se­vere set­back for U.S. and al­lied coun­terin­sur­gency op­er­a­tions in the coun­try that are based in large mea­sure on “soft power” ef­forts to gain sup­port from the lo­cal Afghan pop­u­la­tion to turn against the Tal­iban.

The dam­age grew worse this week when a se­nior mem­ber of the Iran’s par­lia­ment called for the with­drawal of all coali­tion forces from the coun­try.

Se­nate Speaker Fazl Hadi Mosle­m­yar on Tues­day went on Afghan tele­vi­sion in his call for all for­eign troops to de­part Afghanistan. Mr. Mosle­m­yar also urged all pro­vin­cial coun­cils to close of­fices in re­ac­tion to the killings.

Mr. Mosle­m­yar said for­eign­ers are not needed in the coun­try and have brought only “calamity” and “fail­ure.”

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