AFGHANISTAN: Bloody Coup in Kabul

An obscure colonel takes over on the second try

The announcements by Radio Kabul in Persian and Pushtu were brief but to the point: tanks and infantry loyal to a "military revolutionary council" had surrounded the presidential palace in Afghanistan's capital. President Mohammed Daoud, 68, and his younger brother and political confidant, Mohammed Nairn, had been killed after they "madly" resisted the coup. A new regime was in control, led by Col. Abdul Kadir, 37, the air force chief of staff.

For Afghanistan, where settling old political scores through the barrel of a...

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