Afghan massacre suspect's memory loss

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Afghan massacre suspect's memory loss

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The soldier suspected of killing 16 Afghans including nine children has no memory of the incident, according to his lawyer.

John Henry Browne described US Army Staff Sergeant Robert Bales’ state of mind as “confused”.

“He doesn’t remember everything in the evening in question. That doesn’t mean he has amnesia,” he said.

Browne also indicated his first face-to-face meeting with his client had been emotional.

“He was very good about putting me in his shoes,” he said. “We all know what is going on over there (Afghanistan) but you don’t really know until you look at someone like that.”

Bales, 38, had already served three combat tours in Iraq before being sent to Afghanistan. And details are emerging of serious financial problems dating back to his time as a securities broker.

He is being held at Fort Leavenworth military base in Kansas where he should be charged later this week.

But his swift removal from Kandahar where he was serving at the time of the killings has angered many.

The massacre stunned Afghans and the public is furious the man they believe guilty will not face trial in Afghanistan.

Anti-American sentiment was already high following last month’s accidental burning of copies of the Koran by US soldiers.