From "Through Terror to Despotism ...":-
One of the motivations behind the U.S. obsession with exterminating the membership of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan is the urgent need to remove material witnesses. Hence, for example, the massacre of prisoners-of-war at Qala-e-Jangi (late November). Thinly disguised as the suppression of a prison revolt, the massacre was assisted by American and British special forces; they may even have been the main executors of it. CIA agents on the ground may have been instrumental in provoking it, perhaps as the unwitting patsies of their masters (one -- Johnny 'Mike' Spann -- is said to have died for it). Amnesty International and the UN Commission on Human Rights have called for an investigation.
(E.g, Ramimullah Yusufzai, 'The Massacre of Hundreds of POWs In Mazar-i-Sharif Merits Probe', Rense.com, 28 Nov. 2001; Luke Harding et al, 'Fatal errors that led to massacre', Guardian, 1 Dec. 2001.)
Northern Alliance forces under General Abdul Rashid Dostum, who were allied with the US and involved in the above, have subsequently been accused by Amnesty International of suffocating up to 1,000 Taleban (and al-Qaeda?) PoWs who were being transported from the above area to prison camps last Nov.-Dec.]
Corrected from my diary, 19 August 2002:-
The UN 'wants an investigation' of hundreds of Taleban and/or al-Qaeda prisoners-of-war in Northern Afghanistan late last year. Up to 960 were suffocated on sealed trucks 'in transit' from north-west Afghanistan to Kunduz in the north-east. Trenches have been excavated and bodies discovered. Dostum, the Northern Alliance butcher, was in supreme charge of the prisoners. The deaths appear to be related to the notorious Qala-e-Jangi massacre north of Mazar-e-Sharif, also under Dostum, in which American and British forces were involved (and which was so neatly whitewashed by the CNN/Channel 4 documentary recently). No evidence of American involvement has (yet) appeared in this latest exposure.* Dostum worked with the Soviets during their occupation of Afghanistan, and was renowned for running over PoWs with tanks.
(David Teather, "UN evidence of Taliban massacre ...", The Guardian, 19 Aug. 2002)
Fifty would-be Middle-eastern immigrants were [previously] suffocated in a sealed lorry in transit from France to Britain. Perhaps this is where the idea came from.