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Bombs Explode in Uganda Capital, Killing At Least 64

Jim Burroway

July 12th, 2010
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Three bombs ripped through the Ugandan capital city of Kampala Sunday night killing at least 64 people and injuring scores more. Two bombs exploded nearly simultaneously on the grounds of the Kyadondo Rugby Club where thousands had gathered to watch the World Cup Finals on large screen televisions. About an hour earlier, another bomb went off at the crowded Ethiopian Village Restaurant, killing 15 people.

According to one eyewitness at the rugby club, the bombs went off with about three minutes left in the game:

On my knees, I began crawling towards what I thought was an exit. I saw corpses, many still seated in their chairs—like they were still watching the game. My hands felt human flesh lying on the ground, some of it sticking on my palms as I waded through the mass of humanity. Some of the human flesh kept falling from above, like drops of rainfall, falling on my back. The shouts of “bomb! bomb!” continued to ring in the air. I lay down for a while and when I saw policemen begin to wave to people to leave, I dashed out, relieved that I was alive but shocked that anyone would bring such a great party to an agonising bloody end.

While police are continuing to investigate, government spokesperson Fred Opolot said they believed the attacks were carried out by suicide bombers. At least one of the suicide bombers is believed to be a Somali national. According to Uganda’s Daily Monitor:

In the recent past, Somali Islamists have threatened to attack Uganda for sending peacekeeping troops to their country under the auspices of the African Union to protect the struggling government of Sheikh Ahmed Sharif. The Islamists under their group al Shabaab have close ties with Osama Bin Laden’s al Qaeda military network who are known for conducting twin coordinated attacks.

President Yoweri Museveni condemned the attacks as “backwards and cowardly“:

“If they want to fight they should find soldiers, not attack people who are just enjoying themselves,” he said. “We shall look for them and get them, wherever they are.”

Al Shabaab did not claim responsibility, but the New York Times reports they are “happy” with the attacks:

In Mogadishu, the Somali capital, Sheik Yusuf Sheik Issa, a Shabab commander, told radio stations that he was happy with the attacks in Uganda but refused to confirm or deny responsibility by the Shabab. “Uganda is one of our enemies,” The Associated Press quoted him as saying. “Whatever makes them cry, makes us happy. May Allah’s anger be upon those who are against us.”

Al Shababba, which bans music, dancing and sports in the areas of Somalia under their control, has warned that they would kill anyone watching World Cup games in Somalia.

Update: The death toll has risen to 74. Kenya, which borders Uganda to the east, has placed its hospitals and medical personel at Uganda’s disposal. Meanwhile, Al Shabaab has officially claimed responsibility.

Comments

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TampaZeke
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

How long before the gays get blamed?

Jack
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

This post is a little off topic for BTB, no?

Regan DuCasse
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

It begs considerable scrutiny how religious fundamentalism encroaches on certain pursuits that are considered healthy, communal and allows aggression and competitiveness to be channeled (like sports), are repressed so violently.
Relational aspects between men and women is as well. Individual looks and characteristics are forced into drab conformity and ultimately erased (which is what burkas do).
And yet, there is no participation in inventing medical, or scientific marvels. No innovation or creativity in the arts. None of those things that uplift all mankind, are encouraged, but are feared.

In Uganda, gays and lesbians were scrutinized, hunted and talked about as if worse than terrorists, or the mindset that commits acts of violence on human beings, whoever they are.

As I point out, even here in America, the energies of NOM, FRC and so on against gay citizens, exceeds attention to domestic violence, child abandonment and poverty and gang recruitment. All of these destroy families and entire communities, yet…there is no evidence whatsoever that gay citizens engaging in marriage and other supportive things does any of that.

So, horrific attacks on innocents occurs the world over and over, by the thousands.
But if gay people want to hold a parade in Moscow, all policing must intervene.

Fiddling as the world burns so to speak.
How tiresome.

Regan DuCasse
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

Not really Jack, for the reasons prompted in the abstract by Zeke. The Ugandan government, with the participation of SEVERAL American evangelicals, the most famous among them, Rick Warren actively participated in a seriously threatening campaign against gays and lesbians, yet terrorists operated right under their noses and all these people lost their lives so horribly.

No gays and lesbians behave this way in the world. No gays and lesbians could be accused of conspiring to commit acts like this against people doing everyday things that people do.
And in fact, gay people are victims of terrorism right along with everyone else.

Yet, the Ugandan government portrayed gays and lesbians among them as a terrible threat and a presence to be found and eliminated.
The preoccupation with gay people lets far more dangerous elements thrive virtually with impunity.

Makes no friggin’ sense whatsoever. So yeah, it’s quite on topic.

John in the Bay Area
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

I am sure that nobody in Uganda will use this event to point out the dangers of justifying violence in the name of religion.

Just lots of death and destruction. No lessons learned.

Ray
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

Museveni: “backwards and cowardly”.

Ahem. The “Kill The Gays” leader of Uganda has a thing or two to learn about those words.

I’m with Zeke. My *first* thought was that the Ugandans will either blame gays for this or, more likely, take their anger out on gays. It’s tragic, for certain, but keep your eyes peeled for the phase where citizens lash out at their own.

Priya Lynn
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

I’m with TampaZeke, I think pretty soon someone will claim this happened because Uganda has delayed passing the kill the gays bill.

Eric in Oakland
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

“If they want to fight they should find soldiers, not attack people who are just enjoying themselves,” he said.

It is amazing that he can’t see the hypocrasy of this statement. How is the genocide of GLBT people anything other than “attack(ing) people who are just enjoying themselves”?

Ben in Oakland
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

“In Uganda, gays and lesbians were scrutinized, hunted and talked about as if worse than terrorists, or the mindset that commits acts of violence on human beings, whoever they are.”

You beat me to it, Regan. Bang on!

You really want to scream at the Ugandans: “This is what real bad people are like, not manufactured bad.”

But i am afraid they have their heads inserted so far up their bums that they can neither see nor hear anything but sh!t.

Ben in Oakland
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

Sorry, wrong quote,.

“No gays and lesbians behave this way in the world. No gays and lesbians could be accused of conspiring to commit acts like this against people doing everyday things that people do.
And in fact, gay people are victims of terrorism right along with everyone else.

Yet, the Ugandan government portrayed gays and lesbians among them as a terrible threat and a presence to be found and eliminated.
The preoccupation with gay people lets far more dangerous elements thrive virtually with impunity.

grantdale
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

No doubt about it, Al Shabaab do have to respond to the social evils of music, dancing and sports. These things are imported and depraved Western values that destroy families and societies.

Opposing them is supported by 95% of al Shabaab, and you have no right to interfere in our sovereignty. We will decide and act according to our social and family values, whether you approve or not. You are not our colonial masters.

Also, nobody has a right to engage in the behaviour of watching World Cup games. This has nothing to do with real human rights. This is about opposing evil.

I’m sorry, but it’s not as if these people weren’t aware of the consequences of disobeying God.

The wages of sin are death.

—————–

Count us in Jim. This appalling act of terror, inspired by religious zealotry and the required dehumanisation of others, is well placed in the long list of your reports about the scalding disregard for gay people in Uganda; and elsewhere.

Rob San Diego
July 12th, 2010 | LINK

I’m not sure what this has to do with LGBT issues…

paul canning
July 13th, 2010 | LINK

Gay Uganda has confirmed to me rumours I’d heard that there are gay victims of this terrorist attack.

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