New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 15, 1980, New Braunfels, Texas
Friday, Aug. 15, 1980 3ASoviets to review Afghanistan campaign
NEW DELHI, India (AP)'- The Soviet Union has sent a team of experts to the Afghan capital of Kabul to begin a major review of its bogged-down, eight-month-old effort to rout anti-Marxist Moslem rebels, a Western diplomat reported.
The diplomat, who declined to be identified, said a large mobile communications center has been set up at the official Afghan guest house for visiting dignitaries in downtown Kabul
and that large antennas have been observed there.
The last time a mobile communications center was sighted in the Afghan capital was “in late November or early December,” or less than a month before the Kremlin poured the first of 80,000 troops into Afghanistan, the source said.
However, he acknowledged uncertainty about whether the Soviet contingent in Kabul included civilians,
military men, or both.
Soviet and pro-governtnent Afghan troops now control the country’s primitive highway network, Kabul and the country’s second largest city, Jalalabad. But the rebels are still believed in control of the countryside and of Herat, the country’s third largest city.
Herat, in northwestern Afghanistan near Iran and the Soviet Union, was described by the source as being in a
state of “open warfare.” There also has been “trouble” across the three northwester nm ost provinces of Afghanistan—Badakshan, Tahar and Kunduz—for the past three months.
No major battles have been reported, but word has reached the capital of hit-and-run attacks on Soviet military and supply convoys, according to the diplomat who expressed skepticism about the Soviets’ chances of devising a workable strategy to win the war.
“You can’t go for a military' solution (there). You can’t occupy (a country the size of) Texas with 80,000 troops. There are few roads, poor communications, no railroads," the source said. “Anyone with a red stir (Soviet Insignia) is now the enemy."
A growing number of Afghan government soldiers are reported to have switched sides and joined the rebels who have fought a succession of three Marxist governments that have
ruled the Central Asian nation since April, 1978 The source confirmed earlier reports that “two (Afghan army) units," possibly up to regiment in size, defected about three weeks ago. A full regiment would contain about 3,000 men, but all Afghan units are known to be seriously weakened by losses and defections. The source estimated the entire Afghan army, once said to be 80,000 strong, may now contain some 30,000 men.
Waterfalls offer intrigue to tourists who visit the River Road area.
BEIRUT, lebanon (AP) -A fire in a movie theater in a suburb of Baghdad, the Iraqi capital, killed 59 children and injured 45 others, the Iraqi Interior Ministry announced today.
The Iraqi news agency quoted a ministry spokesman as saying the fire was caused by an electrical short circuit in the Al Baida Cinema on Thursday, the third day of the feast marking the end of the Moslem holy month of Ramadan.
There was no mention of any politically motivated sabotage.
Iraqi cities have suffered from violent sabotage that involved several bombings in
the last six months.
Authorities in Baghdad blamed the violence on supporters of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s Islamic revolutionary regime in neighboring Iran.
Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s Socialist Baath Party government is locked in a struggle with Iran for dominance in the oil-rich Persian Gulf region. It also has serious problems with neighboring Syria.
Some of the bombings have been claimed by the underground Al Da wa Party, made up of Iraqi Shiite Moslems opposed to Hussein’s predominantly Sunni Moslem government.
A group calling itself the Iraqi Mojahedeen also has claimed several bombings.
TORONTO (AP) - Marine scientist Joseph Maclnnis of Toronto says he and a group of researchers have located the wreckage of the HMS Breadalbane, which sank off Beechy Island about 90 miles south of the magnetic North Pole 127 years ago.
Maclnnis said it is the most northerly shipwreck ever found.
The Breadalbane was one of several ships sent to find explorer Sir John Franklin, who vanished in 1845 after setting out to find the Northwest Passage.
The first traces of Franklin were found in 1854 at his winter quarters on Beechy Island in the Arctic Ocean. In
Pig rumor blamed
Religious riot kills 85
MORADABAD, India (AP) — At least 85 people were killed in this northern Indian town in Moslem rioting started by rumors that a pig strayed into prayers marking the end of Ramadan, the Moslem holy month, police said today.
A top police official said Moslem mobs battled police and attacked Hindu shops and homes in the Wednesday rioting in this town IOO miles east of New Delhi.
Police Superintendent D.V. Mehta, who said the death toll was at least 85, said many died “in a stampede in the Moslem prayer grounds.”
Nineteen children were among those killed, Mehta said, and mobs beat to death a district police official and four constables who tried to quell the rioting. He said 61 persons
were injured and that five policemen were missing.
News reports in New Delhi said police used gunfire, baton charges and tear gas to break up the crowd of rioters.
Mehta and other officials said a rumor spread about a pig being driven among the 60,000 Moslems gathered at the Idgah Mosque compound
in this dusty town to celebrate the feast ending Ramadan. Pork is taboo for Moslems and a pig at Islamic prayers would be desecration.
A curfew was imposed and army troops and paramilitary troops rushed to reinforce police in the city. Policemen armed with rifles and cane clubs patrolled the streets.
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1859 Franklin’s skeleton was discovered on King William Island. He had abandoned his ice-locked ship just a short distance from the end of the passage.
The Breadalbane sank on Aug. 21, 1853 when its wooden hull was crushed by ice. All crew members escaped alive in an iron-hulled companion ship and preserved detailed maps of the area.
BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Urban guerrillas who kidnapped the leader of Colombia’s Chamber of Representatives and four journalists, released all five early today after lecturing them on the guerrillas’
political point of view, the kidnapped men said.
Guerrillas identifying themselves as members of the Movement-19 organization kidnapped representative Simon Bossa l<opez, two reporters of the Bogota morning daily El Tiempo and two reporters of the Bogota radio station Caracol.
The guerrillas said they want the government to offer amnesty to all guerrillas, including those in jail, Bossa said.
Bossa has sponsored a bill in the lower house of Congress that would grant amnesty to all anti-government guerrillas and the kidnapping apparently was aimed at calling attention to guerrilla demands on the amnesty.
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SAFE DRIVERS SAVE CHILDREN'S LIVES
Rebel soldiers shot; hostages still held
By ASSOCIATED PRESS
Iranian firing squads executed 19 more people at dawn today, including 15 rebel soldiers and the former head of the central bank, Tehran Radio said. Meanwhile, eight Western ambassadors, apparently got nowhere in their demand for the release of the 52 U.S. hostages, now in their 286th day of captivity.
The rebel soldiers, including an officer identified only as retired Ut. Gen. Mahdiyun. were convicted of planning the military-led coup against Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Their deaths brought to 68 the number put to death for the plot, which the regime said it discovered last month.
The broadcast said the others executed included Yusof Khoshkish, “former governor of the central bank during the satanic era” of the late Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Khoshkish was convicted of “treason concerning public funds.” the
Also executed was Eshan Shambazi, “the thinking brain” of the shah’s secret police, SAVAK. Tehran Radio said Shambazi had represented SAVAK at a number of international police conferences and was found guilty of “strengthing the foundations of the hated Pahlavi regime.”
On Thursday, the ambassadors of Austria, Norway, Switzerland, Finland. Spain, Australia, New Zealand and Greece met with Parliament Speaker Hashemi Rafsanjam to “express our anxiety concerning the continued detention of the U.S. hostages and ask for measures for their release since their detention contradicts international relations,” Tehran Radio said.
Khomeini has given the Majlis final authority over the fate of the hostages.
The broadcast said Raf-sanjam told the ambassadors he would discuss their request
with Parliament, called the Majlis, but reiterated Iran’s position that the hostages were members of an "espionage den” at the U.S. Embassy before its takeover Nov. 4 by Iranian militants.
The broadcast quoted Rafsanjani as saying “the hostages were conspiring in Iran as spies and not ordinary spies, at that. We have discovered their footmark in the assassination attempts of the (anti-Khomeini) Forghan group."
Rafsanjani, a member of the hardline majority Islamic Republican Party, asked the Western envoys to “point out the tens of hundreds of cases of violations of rights — economic, political and cultural — of our nation by the USA” and urged them to pressure American leaders “to stop their bullying before they put forward cases Of alleged violations of (international) regulations by us."