US Occupation of Afghanistan to Continue for At Least Another Year

Debra Sweet | March 30, 2015

Farkhunda's funeral in Kabul
Remember back in 2011, when the Obama administration said all US troops would be out of Afghanistan by 2014? Didn't happen. Then they said 2024, but that "most" would be gone by 2015. Earlier this week the public announcement was made that almost all of the 10,000 troops still there will stay... until at least 2016.

One of the acknowledged reasons is the need for a regional base from which to carry out drone surveillance and strikes, denied the U.S. by Pakistan. It's been evident for years that the Afghan government, nurtured by huge cash payments from Washington, had little influence beyond the edge of Kabul, and that they won't survive as a government without the U.S. presence.

What good does U.S. occupation do? As of 2014, according to The Feminist eZine (in Ten Worst Countries for Women Today):

The average Afghan girl will live to only 45 – one year less than an Afghan male. After three decades of war and religion-based repression, an overwhelming number of women are illiterate. More than half of all brides are under 16, and one woman dies in childbirth every half hour. Domestic violence is so common that 87 per cent of women admit to experiencing it. But more than one million widows are on the streets, often forced into prostitution. Afghanistan is the only country in which the female suicide rate is higher than that of males.