Who Is to Blame for U.S.'s Bombing of Afghan Hospital? - NBC4 Washington
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Who Is to Blame for U.S.'s Bombing of Afghan Hospital?

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    In this Friday, Oct. 16, 2015 photo, an employee of Doctors Without Borders walks inside the charred remains of their hospital after it was hit by a U.S. airstrike in Kunduz, Afghanistan. Christopher Stokes, general director of Doctors Without Borders, which is also known by its French abbreviation MSF, whose hospital in northern Afghanistan was destroyed in a U.S. airstrike, says the “extensive, quite precise destruction” of the bombing raid casts doubt on American military assertions that it was a mistake.

    With three simultaneous investigations underway, authorities are likely months from deciding whether a U.S. airstrike on a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Afghanistan was a war crime, NBC News reported. 

    The likelihood of an international prosecution is remote, experts say. But the case might lead to military trials in both countries, where prosecutors could seek convictions for the decisions that led an American AC-130 gunship to open fire on a trauma center during fighting for the city of Kunduz, killing at least 30 people, including 13 charity staffers.

    In the end, if anyone is found criminally liable for the Oct. 3 bombing, it will be mid- to low-level operators who requested and carried out the airstrikes, experts said. Ranking officers typically don't get prosecuted in such cases; they tend to get demoted or forced into retirement.

    But first, investigators must navigate a swamp of shifting accounts.