Afghanistan & Pakistan

For More Than Ten Years the Richest Country in the World Has Been "At War" With the Poorest Country in the World

Find out more about covert drone warfare and the unjust, immoral occupation of Afghanistan:

Killer Drones in Place of War

Drones, with their low cost and low risk, make targeted killing more convenient and more likely.

By Doug Noble

Ever since becoming involved with the protest activities at Hancock Field I have been trying to get some clarity about my objections to drones. A new children’s book on Predator Drones explains, “The US military is always looking for ways to reduce risks for soldiers and to keep pilots safe. This is why unmanned drones are important.” This seems right, but consider that, due to overwhelming US air power superiority, there hasn’t been a US Air Force plane lost in combat in nearly 40 years, and so there is negligible difference in risk between piloting a drone aircraft and flying a fighter jet. Add to this the fact that killer (Predator or Reaper) drones are used most frequently in sovereign nations – Pakistan, Yemen, Libya - with which the US is neither at war nor has any official boots on the ground. So there are no US soldiers to keep safe in these places. It seems that neither US pilots nor soldiers are made safer by most drone deployments. And still their use has skyrocketed.

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Accidental Killing of 12-Year-Old Afghan Girl Highlights Major Challenge for U.S. Military

By Daphne Eviatar

Twelve-year-old Nelofar was shot dead early Thursday morning outside her family's home in Eastern Afghanistan because NATO troops mistakenly believed that her uncle was a Taliban leader. She was running, apparently in fear of the military troops that had just invaded her father's house in the middle of a sweltering summer night.

NATO quickly apologized for its mistake. But it's just one of many such errors by U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan that have led to the deaths of civilians. As documented in a report released earlier this week, similar mistakes are also leading to the imprisonment of many innocent Afghans.

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The Predators: Where is Your Democracy?

By Kathy Kelly

On May 4, 2011, CNN World News asked whether killing Osama bin Laden was legal under international law. Other news commentary has questioned whether it would have been both possible and advantageous to bring Osama bin Laden to trial rather than kill him.  

World attention has been focused, however briefly, on questions of legality regarding the killing of Osama bin Laden.  But, with the increasing use of Predator drones to kill suspected "high value targets" in Pakistan and Afghanistan, extrajudicial killings by U.S. military forces have become the new norm.

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The 2011 Taliban Spring Offensive: Obama’s Obligation to Protect Afghan Civilians Under International Humanitarian Law

"Mr. President, on behalf of the civilian population in Afghanistan, I will see you in court."

By Kathleen Kirwin, Esq.

On Saturday, March 30th, the Leadership Council of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan under its nom de guerre, The Taliban, declared the launch of this year’s spring military operations (the “Spring Offensive”) against the “invading Americans”, their foreign allies, internal supporters, high ranking officials of the Karzai government, including cabinet members and lawmakers, as well as heads of foreign and local companies who work with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). In response to, and in anticipation of, the Taliban’s announcement, NATO officials in Brussels have advised that international forces in Afghanistan have tightened security, security services employed by “westerners” working in Afghanistan have issued lockdowns and travel restrictions, the Afghan government has tightened security across the country and security has been increased at military bases.

 

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Nobel Peace Drones

By Glen Greenwald

 A U.S. drone attack in Pakistan killed 23 people this morning, and this is how The New York Times described that event in its headline and first paragraph:

When I saw that, I was going to ask how the NYT could possibly know that the people whose lives the U.S. just ended were "militants," but then I read further in the article and it said this:  "A government official in North Waziristan told Pakistani reporters that five children and four women were among the 23 who were killed."  So at least 9 of the 23 people we killed -- at least -- were presumably not "militants" at all, but rather innocent civilians (contrast how the NYT characterizes Libya’s attacks in its headlines: "Qaddafi Troops Fire Cluster Bombs Into Civilian Areas").

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Listen to Malalai Joya on War, Occupation and Women in Afghanistan

Malalai JoyaMalalai Joya, Afghan women's and democracy activist and author of A Woman Among Warlords: The Extraordinary Story of an Afghan Who Dared to Raise Her Voice, talks about her work and the prospects for peace in Afghanistan on The Brian Lehrer Show (WNYC Radio: April 18, 2011). 

Anatomy of an Afghan War Tragedy

Predator Attack

By David S. Cloud

Nearly three miles above the rugged hills of central Afghanistan, American eyes silently tracked two SUVs and a pickup truck as they snaked down a dirt road in the pre-dawn darkness.

The vehicles, packed with people, were 3 1/2 miles from a dozen U.S. special operations soldiers, who had been dropped into the area hours earlier to root out insurgents. The convoy was closing in on them.

At 6:15 a.m., just before the sun crested the mountains, the convoy halted.

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Kill Team: The Bigger Picture

Kill Team By Josh Steiber

One year ago, Wikileaks’ “Collateral Murder video1 created outrage over the actions of U.S. soldiers in Baghdad, including the platoon I deployed with. If that grisly video didn’t stop you in your tracks, the photographs and report on the “Kill Team,” released by Rolling Stone should be the wake-up call for truly examining what is being done in our name.2

Before making connections between the two events, it is important to note that I am not making a moral equivalency. Though innocent civilians were killed during the “Collateral Murder” incident, it did occur after a firefight, weapons were found on some of the bodies, and it was not premeditated. In contrast, the “Kill Team’s” murders were preplanned and carried out with no threat, and body parts of the slain were sadistically taken as trophies. That is not a moral excuse for the “Collateral Murder” case, but to evaluate the implications of both events, the context must be presented.

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Could this be the Abu Ghraib Scandal of the U.S. War on Afghanistan?

Rolling Stone's Collection:

The War Crime Images Censored by the Pentagon

Kill Team

A disturbing look at the photos collected by the kill team in Afghanistan – and widely shared among U.S. soldiers as a war souvenir

By Debra Sweet 

Could this be the Abu Ghraib Scandal of the U.S. War on Afghanistan? The Guardian reported last week on the first photos to be released from the group of 4,000 related to the "Kill Team" in Afghanistan now on trial by the Army, for murdering Afghan civilians under cover of war.

The US ambassador to Afghanistan, Karl Eikenberry, recently confided to officials that he feared it might trigger the same kind of scandal as that at Abu Ghraib in Iraq, where images of prisoners being abused by US soldiers sparked anti-American protests.  For weeks the US government has been working to pre-empt any outrage, with top officials, including the US vice president Joe Biden, in talks with Hamid Karzai, the Afghan president.


Now, the Rolling Stone in The Kill Team has more photos.

Guardian UK: U.S. Soldiers Pose for Photos with Murdered Afghans.

U.S. Soldiers Pose for Photos with Murdered Afghans

By Jon Boone, in the Guardian UK  

The face of Jeremy Morlock, a young US soldier, grins at the camera, his hand holding up the head of the dead and bloodied youth he and his colleagues have just killed in an act military prosecutors say was premeditated murder.

Moments before the picture was taken in January last year, the unsuspecting victim had been waved over by a group of US soldiers who had driven to his village in Kandahar province in one of their armoured Stryker tanks.

According to testimony collected by Der Spiegel magazine the boy had, as a matter of routine, lifted up his shirt to reveal that he was not hiding a suicide bomb vest.

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World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.