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8 NOVEMBER

BRITISH EXECUTE AFGHAN VILLAGERS AS A “LESSON”

8 November 1879 – A British cavalry detachment surrounded the Afghan village of Indikee where shots had been fired at the invading British army the previous month. They gave the village headmen five minutes to round up thirty suspects. The correspondent of the London Daily News explained that

“Such as could not give a clear account of their movements were condemned to death”(1)

Accordingly, most of them, as well as several men rounded up in other villages, were then hung over the following days in order to teach Afghans that any community which resisted the British would suffer the harshest consequences.

However the executions were not considered a sufficient punishment and deterrent by themselves.  A fine of 54,000 kg of grain and 600 loads of chopped straw for forage was imposed on Indikee to be delivered within a week or, the British informed the men, their village would be burned to the ground.

FOOTNOTES

  1. The London Daily News quoted in “Hanging Afghans by the Score in Cabul,” The Worcestershire Chronicle, p3 and “The Situation in Afghanistan”, The Sunderland Daily Echo, 16 December 1879, p2
  2. The London Daily News quoted in “Hanging Afghans by the Score in Cabul,” The Worcestershire Chronicle, p3

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