AFGHANISTAN: Murder in the Mountains

A bloody coup rattles a shaky, strife-torn Soviet satellite

Gunshots echoed through the granite halls of Kabul's People' House, punctuating a fresh installment in Afghanistan's long history of violence and political intrigue. When the Shootout was over, some 60 people lay dead, including, apparently, President Noor Mohammed Taraki. The new leader of the strife-torn country was Hafizullah Amin, 50, most recently President Taraki's Prime Minister. Within hours, workers in the mile-high capital had stripped hundreds of outsize portraits of Taraki from the facades of state office buildings. Many of the red-bordered images of Afghanistan's "Great Leader" had been put...

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