May 2, 2007
1. Murder in Nangahar
Once again the US demonstrated their blatant disregard for human life by attacking Afghan civilians in a populated area.
thewe Photo: AP/Rahmat Gul
"The international community’s military actions, particularly its bombing campaigns, are causing injury and death to innocent Afghan civilians, provoking anger and frustration among the local population." Senlis Council
The US should show more compassion and less contempt for the lives of human beings worldwide. Hence the collapse of its Empire. The horrors in Iraq are mirrored in Afghanistan: civilian murders; harassment; no improvements in water, electricity, hospitals, schools. Now, Afghanistan has its very own 'Haditha’ - which boomerangs back to Fallujah, Iraq.
Two stories on the 4 March murder disaster appeared. Carlotta Gall wrote in the New York Times 16 Civilians Killed as U.S. Troops Fire on Afghan Road. The press office blamed the [terrorists] - Lt. Col. Accetta then blamed the 'Taliban.’ "We regret the death of innocent Afghan citizens as a result of the [Taliban extremists] cowardly act," Lt. Col. David Accetta, a military spokesman, said in the statement. "Once again the [terrorists] demonstrated their blatant disregard for human life by attacking coalition forces in a populated area, knowing full well that innocent Afghans would be killed and wounded in the attack."
Afghan men shout anti-American slogans after a car bomber attacked a US convoy in Nangarhar province, eastern Afghanistan yesterday. The US response left up to 10 civilians dead. Photo Rahmat Gul/AP
The story relating to the above photo can be read here
The initial investigation of the March 4 incident, reported in the International Herald Tribune, said that a probe found that excessive force had been used" 'Up to a dozen Afghan civilians are reported to have died. A senior defense official concluded that the 'Marines' response was "out of proportion to the threat that was immediately there."
The Afghan authorities launched an investigation ; and the marine unit was ordered to leave the country (23.03.07. CBS).
The murder of 8 Afghan Civilians led to the firing of Spec ops commander The Marine Corps Times (11.04.07)said that the firings occurred April 3, one month after members of the company allegedly killed eight civilians after a Marine convoy was ambushed by a car bomb in Afghanistan's Nangarhar province.
ABC reported (12.04.07) that a US soldier deleted media images to protect inquiry
A Guardian article (14.04.07) said: "AHIRC alleges that U.S. troops, serving with NATO-led International Security Assistance Force returned to the area after the bombing for an investigation and a cleanup operation, which involved removal of all bullet shells and cartridges.
NBC reported that "Slain, hurt Afghans were civilians."
A Scott Tyson / Josh White wrote in the Washington Post (14.04.07) that a probe found that there was ’No evidence of fighters among dozens fired on by Marines. ' The troops continued shooting at perceived threats as they travelled miles from the site of the March 4 attack. 'The results of the preliminary investigation, which are not conclusive, are similar to the findings of an official Afghan human rights inquiry and contradict initial reports that the civilians might have been killed in a small-arms attack that followed the suicide bombing.
Ms. Gall continues the saga with another excellent NY Times article (15.04.07):
Marines’ Actions in Afghanistan Called Excessive . She writes of a murdered 16 year old newly married woman, and a 75 year old man unrecognisable from so many bullets.
Greg Mitchell asks in Editor and Publisher (15.04.07): 'Deletion 'of Images in Afghanistan: Attempt to Cover up Civilian Killings?"
He gives details worth reading.
Paul von Zielbauer of The New York Times found that the Killings of Afghan Civilians Recall Haditha.
An Haditha officer was up for a bronze star medal recently.
(Who is going to get the U.S. hero award for the 4 March Nangarhar murders?)
The Jurist has a fully sourced article, including the AIHRC report, noting that the "UN Marine Corps Special Forces unit under the command of USSOCOM, violated international humanitarian law by using indiscriminate and excessive force in its response to a March 4 suicide bombing against the unit’s convoy in Nangahar province."
David Morris has a interesting perspective on Nangarhar and US marines ("Shit runs downhill") at Salon.com (26.04.07).
The US military are still killing people in Nangarhar. On 29 April, Aljazeera.net reported that six people were killed in Nangarhar. Three were women. "It is extremely unfortunate that [militants] put others' lives in danger by hiding among their families," said Major Chris Belcher. VOA reports on the 'massive protests’
And military justice: does giving compensation for a dead son / husband resolve grief or troop violence? See full compensatory details in The Jurist.
There are thousands of claims submitted to the Army by Iraqi, Afghan families. See Payment sought in civilian deaths (12.04.07. chroncom)
On 27 April, it was announced that Foreign soldiers not to be prosecuted in Afghanistan ;
Criminal Charges Are Expected Against Marines, Official Says (27.04.07. P. von Zielbaurer, NY Times); and Some Marines recalled to Lejeune (AP, 27.04.07.).
Meanwhile, Condi Unocol Rice was at a NATO meeting in Oslo, "discussing American plans to build anti-missile defenses." This will not resolve NATO or Afghanistan’s problems, or civilian murders, but will add to the US-NATO corporate coffers . (see extensive section on missile shield in "Nato, General", below).
(see extensive section on missile shield in "Nato, General", below).
1. Murder in Nangarhar
2. Oil and Gas (Pakistan/Iran /India & Iraq)
3. Strategic Imperatives (Afghanistan, Pakistan, US, Media & Videos)
6. Investment and Aid
8. NATO Participating Countries (Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, UK)
10. Human Rights (reports, articles, rendition, Guantanamo)
11. Some Deaths (Pat Tillman, others)
12. Future Deaths (DU)
2. Oil and Gas (Pakistan/Iran /India & Iraq)
See: Index on Afghanistan, 'oil’ (31.08.06) for historical background / maps; then continuing monthly updates.
Peace pipeline or pipedream?
04.07. Ikram Sehgal, The News.com. The proposed US$7 billion Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) 2720 kilometres gas "peace pipeline" project is expected to take three to five years to complete. While Pakistan's demand for gas will expand significantly over the next two decades, India's need is far more. Showing ambivalence for the project because of US pressure, India has three options for acquiring gas from Iran … Apart from the economic value for Pakistan and the other countries involved, the pipeline project is an important geo-political crossroads opportunity for (1) a new political alliance in the region, making the region (and Pakistan) less vulnerable to American pressure and influence and (2) with the absolute subservience to the US coming to a close, creating a new political and more equal partnership based on pragmatic mutual interests.
India to push for $7b Iran gas pipeline project
03.04.07. Tehran times. India is committed to a multibillion-dollar pipeline that will transport gas from energy-rich Iran through Pakistan despite reported objections from the United States, Oil Minister Murli Deora said Saturday.
US Reiterates Opposition To Iran-Pak-India Pipeline Project
07.04.07. bemama. Responding to queries on the project, Gordon W. Weynand, a US energy expert and a senior official in the US Agency for International Development (USAID), was quoted by PTI as saying that Washington was against associating the Iranian regime with the IPI gas project and was ready to help Islamabad meet its energy needs (through "financial and technical support")
Pakistan committed to Iran gas pipeline project, says spokesperson
Pakistan to welcome Russian role in gas pipeline: PM
13.04.07. Indian Muslims.
India firm on gas pipe from Iran
16.04.07. Australian news/ICH. A DISPUTE between Washington and its two major South Asian allies is intensifying as India and Pakistan dig in their heels over building a highly strategic, $10 billion gas pipeline stretching 2600km from Iran.
Iran/Pakistan-India gas pipeline in use by 2012
US to continue to oppose IPI gas pipeline project
29.04.07. Pak Tribune.
3. Strategic Imperatives (Afghanistan, Pakistan, US, Media. Videos)
"The longer the Westerners stay and bomb villages, the more resistance will grow. Western troops stuck in this nasty, $2-billion daily guerrilla conflict will become increasingly brutalized, demoralized and violent." Eric Margolis
COUNTERING THE INSURGENCY IN AFGHANISTAN: LOSING FRIENDS AND MAKING ENEMIES
02.07. SENLIS REPORT. 'With a rapid rise in violent insurgency, southern Afghanistan is at tipping point, and the international community’s counter-insurgency strategy is in urgent need of reassessment.
The general Afghan population is feeling increasingly alienated from and hostile to the international community. The practice of counter-insurgency in Afghanistan has so far predominantly focused on military instruments to fight against the insurgency. By doing this, it has wrongfully left out all the non-military elements that form part of counter-insurgency strategy – for example, humanitarian aid, economic development, establishing health care and developing the education system. What Afghans in the south see instead in their daily lives are the military bombing campaigns, where bombs do not distinguish between innocent civilians and insurgents.
What is required is a frank reassessment of the realities of the current insurgency dynamic, the declining credibility of the international community and an acknowledgement of the legitimate grievances of the Afghan people. If properly applied, the non-military elements of classic counter-insurgency practice would immediately improve security and create more support for the Karzai government.’
Case study: War Zone Hospitals in Afghanistan: A Symbol of Wilful Neglect
02.07. SENLIS COUNCIL. The war in Afghanistan is being unnecessarily prolonged 'The international community’s military actions, particularly its bombing campaigns, are causing injury and death to innocent Afghan civilians, provoking anger and frustration among the local population. But the international community has yet to provide effective assistance to injured and displaced civilian casualties. The hospitals in Kandahar and Helmand are dilapidated, barren and filthy. The current situation of medical care in southern Afghanistan symbolises to Afghans the international community’s wilful neglect to support and partner the Afghan people in the meeting of vital health needs. A fraction of the money spent on military activities in Afghanistan could, however, significantly improve the quality of people’s lives, build trust, and win the hearts and minds of the Afghan people through the introduction of simple, inexpensive, low-technology health and infrastructure.’
Floods, avalanche kill 51 in Afghanistan
What the U.S. doesn’t want you to know about "War on terror": Taliban retuning to Afghanistan, NATO, U.S. forces losing ground!
02.04.07. Ahmed Abdullah, al jazeera. More than five years after the U.S. occupation of Afghanistan that ousted the Taliban regime, Afghans say their lives have become more insecure.
Losing the war in Afghanistan
02.04.07. R. Rotberg, Boston.com. THE UNITED States and NATO are about to lose the war in Afghanistan to an insurgent, revived Taliban. Deprived of sufficient firepower and soldiers, Allied forces are failing to hunt down and contain the Taliban, especially in the southern part of the country. Moreover, the crucial battle for Pashtun hearts and minds is also about to be lost.
Security Council: Efforts to secure peace in Afghanistan not working
07.04.07. Saeed Shabazz, final call.
We want the Taliban back, say ordinary Afghans
08.04.07. C. Sands, Independent.
Analysts warn Afghanistan battle cannot be won
11.04.07. B. Miller, ABC. Transcript from The World Today.
The US has returned fundamentalism to Afghanistan
12.04.07. Malalai Joya, Common Dreams/ICH. a transcript of the speech given by Malalai Joya, member of the Afghan Parliament, at the University of Los Angeles.
Afghanistan Fight Will Only Get Tougher
15.04.07. Eric Margolis, Toronto Star / Common Dreams. Superb article with historical / modern perspective. "This week, the same think tank (Senlis) issued a shocking new survey based on 17,000 interviews. "Afghanis in southern Afghanistan are increasingly prepared to admit their support for Taliban, and belief that the government and international community will not be able to defeat the Taliban is widespread." … The longer the Westerners stay and bomb villages, the more resistance will grow. Such is the inevitable pattern of every guerrilla war I have ever covered. … Western troops stuck in this nasty, $2-billion daily guerrilla conflict will become increasingly brutalized, demoralized and violent.|
We want the Taliban back, say ordinary Afghans
17.04.07. C. Sands, Independent/legitgov.
Afghanistan in a downward spiral
18.04.07. Haroun Mir, Asia Times / ICH. In addition to long-lasting problems such as military conflict, narcotics and warlordism, the Afghan government is increasingly facing new dilemmas which emanate from people's dire social and economic conditions. People demand jobs, shelter and legitimate means to live a decent life. It is the prospect of political turmoil that poses the far greater danger for the stability of the country than military threats by the Taliban.
Taliban cut road northeast of Afghan capital
18.04.07. Reuters Alert net / mediafax.ro. Taliban fighters have cut off a road to the northeast of the Afghan capital and government forces were preparing on Wednesday to drive them out of the area, a provincial governor said.
"Afghan troops have torn down part of a new anti-Taleban fence being erected by Pakistan on the border between the two countries, officials in Kabul"Getty Images, BBC
Afghanistan 'border fence' clash
19.04.07. BBC. Afghan troops have torn down part of a new anti-Taleban fence being erected by Pakistan on the border between the two countries, officials in Kabul say.
Afghan, Pakistani Troops Clash Over Border Fence
19.04.07. AFP / Relief web / anti-war.com. Afghan troops tore down a new anti-Taliban fence erected by Pakistani soldiers on the border between the two countries Thursday, sparking a gun battle which caused no casualties, officials said.
The fundamental problems of Afghanistan
21.04.07. IMRAN KHAN, Zaman. Excellent analysis.
'A recent poll found that 60 percent of Afghans said that the US-backed government was more corrupt than the Taliban. The Taliban are tying to take advantage of the situation and say that under their rule there was no corruption and rule was equal for all. . So the problem is very simple and clear, the Afghan government should bring changes in their ranks to help poor people instead of making life difficult for them. Countries like Canada and others should show their concern for these fundamental issues as they also suffer the consequences of the situation.’
Afghanistan's bloody new year
21.04.07. Mark Dammett, BBC.
AFGHANISTAN: UN OFFICIAL URGES INVESTMENT IN WOMEN'S HEALTH TO STEM MATERNAL DEATHS
23.04.07. Harold doan. Afghanistan, which has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world, must intensify efforts to improve the health of women and children as part of overall efforts to boost conditions in the war-ravaged country, the head of the United Nations Population Fund said today in Kabul.
Taliban seize Afghanistan’s southern district
Afghanistan and Iraq: it’s the same war
27.04.07. D. Orchard, M. Mandel, Global Research.ca. … "when it comes to Afghanistan, we hear the same jingoistic bluster we heard about Iraq four years ago. As if Iraq and Afghanistan were two separate wars, and Afghanistan is the good war, the legal and just war. … he Security Council resolutions of September 2001 never mention Afghanistan, much less authorize an attack on it. That’s why the attack on Afghanistan was also a supreme international crime, which killed at least 20,000 innocent civilians in its first six months. The Bush administration used 9/11 as a pretext to launch an open-ended so-called "War on Terror" — in reality a war of terror because it kills hundreds of times more civilians than the other terrorists do."
Attacks Spark Fears of Taliban Defeating NATO
28.04.07. npr.org./legitgov. In Afghanistan, the Taliban insurgency is spreading, even reaching some provinces in the north that had never been its strongholds. Last week, Taliban fighters attacked a district only 45 miles from the capital, Kabul. Afghans increasingly fear that NATO and Afghan forces will lose the war.
Unpopularity of Karzai government threatens Afghanistan war effort, Holbrooke warns
28.04.07. IHT / ICH. NATO risks losing the war in Afghanistan because of a "tremendous deterioration" in the popularity of the government of U.S.-backed President Hamid Karzai, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Richard Holbrooke said Saturday
Pakistan lawyers protest outside latest hearing for suspended chief justice
23.04.07. UN press release.
The Secret War Against Iran
03.04.07. B. Ross, C. Isham, ABC / ICH. A Pakistani tribal militant group responsible for a series of deadly guerrilla raids inside Iran has been secretly encouraged and advised by American officials since 2005, U.S. and Pakistani intelligence sources tell ABC News.
'Israelisation’ of Waziristan and Tank
04.04.07. The news.com. A sort of 'mini-Israel’ is emerging in Waziristan and Tank areas, where foreigners stand their ground after relishing property they bought during the Afghan war and are now under threat from the Taliban and the Malik forces that have turned against them under the slogan 'expel the terrorist foreigners’.
Pakistan warns US against critical legislation
11.04.07. Reuters / khaleejtimes. Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz warned the United States on Wednesday against any legislation that makes military aid conditional on its results in fighting terrorism and introducing democratic reforms. (well done!) Aziz’s comments came after leading US Democrats submitted a non-binding resolution to the Senate calling for such steps. The resolution, submitted by Senators Chris Dodd, John Kerry and Joseph Biden, was reported by the Web edition of the News, Pakistan’s biggest-selling English-language daily, on Wednesday.
'Rendition’ man in Pakistan’s custody: Amnesty
19.04.07. The news. A Pakistani man whose family says was abducted as part of the US-led war on terror is in custody in Pakistan after 18 months of secret detention, human rights group Amnesty International said.
How the Taliban Defeated the Pakistani Army in Waziristan
22.04.07. Sherwood Ross, Counterpunch. Pakistan's army suffered losses of 700 killed in its unsuccessful effort to push Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters from Afghanistan out of their tribal sanctuaries in Pakistan, an Islamabad-based journalist reports. That defeat may explain Islamabad's reluctance to resume the struggle.
Pakistan lawyers renew protests against chief justice suspension
24.04.07. The Jurist.
Transporters threaten to stop Nato supplies
27.04.07. dawn.co. Pakistan-Afghan transporters on Thursday threatened to suspend from Friday transport of goods to Nato forces in Afghanistan if collection of "illegally levied taxes and extortion money" across the border by so-called commanders was not stopped.
Video. One Thousand Guns A Day. The Gun Bazaar of Pakistan.
Homeland Security: Compendium of Recommendations Relevant to House Committee Organization and Analysis of Considerations for the House, and 109th and 110th Congresses Epilogue
02.03.07 CRS Report, updated.
Declarations of War and Authorizations for the Use of Military Force: Historical Background and Legal Implications
08.03.07. CRS Report, updated.
Secrecy News reveals some amusing / frightening information about the DoD "Visual Aircraft Recognition" document. "When Secrecy News gained unauthorized access to a restricted U.S. Army manual on visual identification of U.S. and foreign aircraft, we supposed that it was just one more case of unnecessary and inappropriate secrecy. . But it turns out to be something worse than that, since "the document (pdf) contains a surprising number of technical errors. The dimensions given in the Army manual for the Predator unmanned aerial vehicle are wrong, the Entropic Memes blog astutely noted. And the entry for the B-52, among others, is likewise incorrect. "Please," Entropic Memes exclaimed. "If they can't get the details of one of their own systems correct, how much faith can you have that they got the details of anyone else's systems right?" Read more at Secrecy News. Better still, sign up and receive their newsletters.
United States Special Operations Command, 1987-2007
April 2007. SOCOM History and Research Office, MacDill Air Force Base.
Special Operations Forces: Several Human Capital
Challenges Must Be Addressed to Meet Expanded Role
July 2006. GAO-06-812
Army Special Operations Forces
U.S. Army Field Manual 3-05
Presidential Secrecy and the Law
2007.Robert M. Pallitto and William G. Weaver, Johns Hopkins University Press
See superb essay on secrecy by Steven Aftergood: Presidential Secrecy and the Law.
See also: violations of classified information security policy in the Bush White House; text of the two proposed Pentagon access restrictions
Department of Homeland Security briefing on the National Exercise Program
Exercise Synchronization Working Group and NEP Implementation Plan Update and Way Ahead
05-06.03.07. Joint Chiefs of Staff.
13 National Guard members to deploy to Afghanistan
04.07. WCAX. The 13 Alaska Army National Guard members will serve one year, working with the Afghan National Army in support of efforts to rid that nation of "terrorist" groups.
300 Arizona airmen headed for Afghanistan
Army's Hallucinogenic Weapons Unveiled
06.04.07. Crimes and Corruptions of the New World Order. 'This may be the first and last time in my life that I call a self-published book a "must read," but psychiatrist James Ketchum's Chemical Warfare: Secrets Almost Forgotten is an usual case. As Steve Aftergood of Secrecy News has already pointed out, this book "is a candid, not entirely flattering, sometimes morbidly amusing account of a little-documented aspect of Army research." … This is not a book that deeply explores the ethical dimensions of chemical warfare and experimentation. For that, you may want to read Jonathan Moreno's excellent Mind Wars . But those who just want the gritty details of past research, it's worth checking out Ketchum's memoir, which also contains a wealth of references and data specific to the military's work.’
Field Rations are falling short in fueling troops
08.04.07. A. Madhani, Chicago Tribune.
Bush struggles to find war tsar to oversee Iraq and Afghanistan
11.04.07. E. MacAskill, Guardian. … One of the four-star generals said he declined because of the chaotic way the war was being run and because Dick Cheney, the vice-president and the leading hawk in the Bush administration, retained more influence than pragmatists looking for a way out.
Pentagon to Extend Service for All Soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan
11.04.07. ABC. Active-Duty Tours to Go to 15 Months Instead of 12 Months.
"Think About It, Rush…"
12.04.07. G. Leupp, Dissident Voice. imbaugh noted that the House Armed Services Committee now under Democratic leadership has decided to abandon the phrase "Global War on Terror" (GWOT) from its defense budget documents because it "doesn’t like the phrase." Actually it’s because the leadership feels that it tendentiously connects the (Afghan War) response to the 9-11 al-Qaeda attack with the separate war in Iraq, which has of course been the neocons’ intention all along. (given examples of Cheney lies).
CIA told of [al-qaeda] hijack plot before 9/11
16.04.07. News.com. (8 months before 9/11)
September 11, 2001: The French Knew Much About It
16.04.07. Guillaume Dasquié, Le Monde/Truthout. 'It's an impressive mass of documents. From a distance, one would imagine a doctoral thesis. On closer inspection: nothing of the kind. Red stamps "Confidential-Defense" and "Strictly National Usage" on every page. At the top on the left, a royal blue logo: that of the DGSE, Direction générale des services extérieurs [General Directorate for Foreign Services], the French secret services. In total, 328 classified pages. Notes, reports, syntheses and summaries, maps, graphs, organization charts, satellite photos. All exclusively devoted to al-Qaeda, its leaders, its seconds-in-command, its hide-outs and training camps. Also to its financial supports. Nothing less than the fundamentals of the DGSE reports compiled between July 2000 and October 2001.’
Escalating U.S. Military Spending: Income Redistribution in Disguise
18.04.07. Ismael Hossein-zadeh, Payvand.com. How Escalation of War and Military Spending Are Used as Disguised or Roundabout Ways to Reverse the New Deal and Redistribute National Resources in Favor of the Wealthy. It can be demonstrated, however, that there is another (less obvious but perhaps more critical) factor behind the recent rise of U.S. military aggressions abroad: war profiteering by the Pentagon contractors. Frequently invoking dubious "threats to our national security and/or interests," these beneficiaries of war dividends, the military–industrial complex and related businesses whose interests are vested in the Pentagon’s appropriation of public money, have successfully used war and military spending to justify their lion’s share of tax dollars and to disguise their strategy of redistributing national income in their favor. . This cynical strategy of disguised redistribution of national resources from the bottom to the top is carried out by a combination of (a) drastic hikes in the Pentagon budget, and (b) equally drastic tax cuts for the wealthy. As this combination creates large budget deficits, it then forces cuts in non-military public spending as a way to fill the gaps that are thus created. As a result, the rich are growing considerably richer at the expense of middle– and low–income classes.
'US cannot be trusted to act responsibly’
19.04.07. The News/anti-war.com. There is widespread global concern that the United States cannot be trusted to act responsibly in the world, according to a multinational poll released here Wednesday. … "There’s clearly a trend in terms of deepening negative attitudes to the US in how it executes foreign policy," said Christopher Whitney, executive director for studies at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs which helped coordinate the 18-country study.
Noble Resolve 07
Video and transcript. ICH blog. From April, 23 to April 27, the elite echelon of the military are running Noble Resolve 07, a four-day marathon of "simulated" terror attacks across the US and Europe. This includes a simulated detonation of a "loose" ten-kiloton nuclear weapon Virginia harbor, smuggled in by a "foreign nation."
US to establish missile defence system on Guam
23.04.07. Radio Australia / anti-war.com.
US offers advanced missile system to India
27.04.07. Zee news / anti-war.com
America's war on tourists
28.04.07. New Zealand Herald. In a recent poll of international travellers, commissioned by Discover America Partnership, a coalition of US tourist organisations, 70 per cent of respondents said they feared US officials more than terrorists or criminals
Unocol Condi's tongue twisting language - a la Rumsfeld
Rice backs off Iraq 'imminent threat' claim, then redefines term
29.04.07. Raw Story/anti-war.com
What we are really seeing is a war by Western powers seeking to dominate the strategic oil corridor of Afghanistan, directed against the Pashtun people who comprise half that nation’s population. Another 15 million live just across the border in Pakistan. What we call the "Taliban" is actually a loose alliance of Pashtun tribes and clans, joined by nationalist forces and former mujahedin from the 1980s anti-Soviet struggle. … The U.S. and NATO are not fighting "terrorists" in Afghanistan and they are certainly not winning hearts and minds. They are fighting the world’s largest tribal people." Eric Margolis (15.04.07)
The United States has a history of mislabeling people. In 1938, when a 'Red Scare’ was rampant, President F. D. Roosevelt was still sending materials to Germany1 , supporting the Klu Klux Klan, and Franco. Anyone who disagreed with these policies– for example - Eleanor Roosevelt - was called "communist, subversive and un-american."
These days, the US government, supported by the Mainstream Media, label citizens and other governments [al Qaeda, Taliban, terrorists, extremists, supporters of terrorism, communist, unpatriotic, insurgents, militants, anti-semitic, evil.] The lies can exponentially increase from these simple but false premises.
The U.K. government has picked up the knack of using every cliché possible. Tony Blair’s language, as seen in The Independent’s story by John Grice (18.04.07), Blair: West could lose [al-Qa'ida] propaganda war, can be read as a parody on the War of Terror.
The "War on Terror" is the most heinous label of all. MP Hillary Benn has rightly disowned it: "In the UK, we do not use the phrase 'War on Terror' because we can't win by military means alone, and because this isn't us against one organised enemy with a clear identity and a coherent set of objectives." The media do not have such clarity.
For a brilliant analysis of US language and this 'war’, see Tomgram: The Devil's Dictionary of War in Iraq .
The problem of the Media and the US 'war on terror’ / Iraq, extends to Afghanistan. The Afghanistan war is accepted as okay. It is not. Everything Mr. Moyers says about the irresponsibility of the media and Iraq can also apply to Afghanistan.
Afghan (sic) government bans Al-Jazeera programs on local TV station
Al-Arabiya Broadcasts Video Of French Hostages In Afghanistan
15.04.07. azadiradio.org. 'Canadian public television network CBC -- which earlier today broadcast still images from the video -- said the video showed the French aid workers pleading for their lives.’
Afhan Journalists Protest Station Raid
18.04.07. Amir Shah, Forbes/anti-war.com. More than 100 journalists on Wednesday protested a police raid ordered by Afghanistan's attorney general (sic) on a private TV station that has fueled concern over growing government harassment of the media.
Federally Funded Boffins Want To Scrap The Internet
18.04.07. Steve Watson, Global Research.ca. "Researchers funded by the federal government want to shut down the internet and start over, citing the fact that at the moment there are loopholes in the system whereby users cannot be tracked and traced all the time. . Time magazine has reported that several foundations and universities including Rutgers, Stanford, Princeton, Carnegie Mellon and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are pursuing individual projects, along with the Defense Department, in order to wipe out the current internet and replace it with a new network which will satisfy big business and government
VIDEO REPORT. Policing Afghanistan. Alex Thomson, Channel 4 (20.0407). The local police are 'out of control' in Afghanistan - the British soldiers who have to train them say even the Taliban are better behaved. (22.o4) VIDEO report .
Iraq, Afghanistan War Vets Find Relief in the Footlights
24.04.07. Aaron Glantz, anti-war.com.
2006 'most brutal' year for journalists with 100 killed
26.04.07. AFP / Daily Star.
VIDEO: AFGHAN MASSACRE: CONVOY OF DEATH. 50 min. The film has been broadcast on national television in countries all over the world and has been screened by the European parliament. In Afghanistan, filmmaker Jamie Doran has uncovered evidence of a massacre: Taliban prisoners of war suffocated in containers, shot in the desert under the watch of American troops. No U.S. media outlet has broadcast the film. Amy Goodman recently discussed and showed the film on Democracy Now .
BAE Gets $7.2M General Dynamics Contract
02.04.07. AP. For a 57-mm gun. 2nd time BAE received contract for the gun through General Dynamics.
Lockheed Martin Receives $150 Million Contract for F-2 Component Work
02.04.07. pcb007. to manufacture components for five additional F-2 production aircraft. MHI is the prime contractor for the F-2, Japan's operational support fighter.
Lockheed Martin lands Canadian contract
03.04.07. San Antonio biz.
Democratic Blood Money and Senator Feinstein's War Profiteering
05.04.07. J. Frank, Dissident Voice. Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein of California silently resigned from her post on the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee (MILCON) late last week as her ethical limbo with war contracts began to surface in the media, including an excellent investigative report written by Peter Byrne for Metro in January. MILCON has supervised the appropriations of billions of dollars in reconstruction contracts since the Bush wars began.
EDO Upgraded on Defense Contract
09.04.07. AP/forbes. On Friday, the Department of Defense gave EDO an $88 million contract for 10,000 devices designed to jam signals that detonate remote-controlled improvised explosive devices.
Raytheon Awarded Contract To Produce Missile Launchers For US Navy
09.04.07. spacewar. Raytheon Technical Services Company has been awarded a $10.7 million contract to produce missile launchers in support of the U.S. Navy's F/A-18 E/F and EA-18G aircraft. The LAU-115 and LAU-116 launchers provide the structural and electrical interfaces that allow the aircraft to carry and launch missiles such as Sparrow, Sidewinder and AMRAAM.
General Dynamic Gets Canadian Contract
11.04.07. Forbes. Defense contractor General Dynamics Corp. on Wednesday said its Canadian branch won a 30 million Canadian dollar ($26.3 million) contract from the Canadian Forces for its biological agent detection and sampling system.
Agilent Technologies Receives $94 Mln Contract From US Army To Deliver Radio Test Sets; Introduces Microarrray- Based Assay For MicroRNA – Update
11.04.07. Trading Markets.
Navy awards network-centric contract
Lockheed Loses Navy Contract
12.04.07. The Street. The Navy terminated Lockheed Martin's (LMT - Cramer's Take - Stockpickr) contract for construction of the second of two new combat ships, citing cost overruns.
Lockheed Martin Gets $14.2M Contract
16.04.07. Chron.com. $14.2 million contract from U.S. Navy for a U.K. ballistic missile program. The U.K. Royal Navy's Trident II D5 missiles, built by Lockheed Martin, are used on British-build Trident ballistic missile submarines.
General Dynamics wins major government contract
17.04.07. Reuters. … 'a deal valued at around $5 billion by industry analysts. The contract aims to create a secure communications network that would allow over 80,000 federal agents to transmit data and talk to each other throughout the United States and its territories. (?) General Dynamics. the No. 4 U.S. defense contractor beat out No. 1 contractor Lockheed Martin Corp.
CACI gets $35 million contract to support Louisville operation
19.04.07. Charlotte biz journals. (Caci have security officers in Iraq. See 'Updates,’ Iraq: Security Companies and Training Camps.
SAIC wins Pacific contract from Air Force
19.04.07. $394 million Air Force contract.
Gates says Washington to sell smart bombs to Saudi Arabia
Raytheon Gets $144M Army Contract
26.04.07. Chron.com. "To provide engineering services for the Patriot air and missile defense program."
Lockheed Gets $54.6M Air Force Contract
27.04.07. AP/ Chron.com. 'to provide sniper targeting pods and related support for the Pakistani government.
25% of UK Iraq aid budget goes to security firms
02.04.07. D. Pallister, Guardian. · £165m bill includes guards for staff and police training · Leading beneficiary is company (Armorgroup) headed by MP M. Rifkind. The UK has spent £165m on hiring private security companies in Iraq in the past four years - the equivalent to around a quarter of the entire Iraq aid budget, it has emerged. A further £43m has been spent on private guards in Afghanistan since 2004.
Uniform Code of Military Justice
Secrecy News writes:"In November 2006, Congress expanded UCMJ [Uniform Code of Military Justice] authority over contractor personnel authorized to accompany the force. However, as of February 2007, DOD has provided no implementation guidance for this change in law." As of mid-March, there was still no such implementation guidance.
"The liability and accountability of contractor personnel in most cases is already provided for in U.S. law, international agreements, conventions, treaties, and Status of Forces Agreements."
"However, in some cases a gap may emerge where the contractor personnel are not subject to the UCMJ (only in time of declared war) and the contractor commits an offense in an area that is not subject to the jurisdiction of an allied government (for example, an offense committed in enemy territory)."
"In such cases, the contractor's crime may go unpunished unless other federal laws, such as the military extraterritorial jurisdiction act (MEJA) or the war crimes act (WCA) apply, or the contractor is otherwise subject to the UCMJ (for example, a military retiree)." See Contractors Accompanying the Force - Training Support Package (12.03.07) and related explanatory material .
Troops Rescue Five in Afghanistan
13.04.07. AP/Washington Post. The coalition did not identify the company or the nationalities of those rescued.
Homicide Car Bomber Kills 3 Security Guards in Afghanistan
15.04.07. Fox news. The security firm, U.S. Protection and Investigations, said that a homicide bomber riding a motorcycle blew himself up near a convoy, killing two employees and wounding another.
War pimp alert
First, the US accuses Iran of interfering in Iraq. Now we have U. S. reports capturing Iranian-made weapons bound for Taliban . (18.04.07. IHT / ICH) 'A shipment of Iranian-made weapons bound for the [Taliban] was recently captured by allied forces in Afghanistan, the Pentagon's top officer said.’
Government Keeps a Secret After Studying Spy Agencies
25.04.07. S. Shane, NY Times.
Contractors playing major role in U.S. intelligence
26.04.07. USA Today / anti-war.com. Private contractors, including for-hire intelligence analysts, computer technicians and spies, now form a "key part" of the overall intelligence workforce, according to a survey by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.
6. Investment and Aid
In Iraq, all money is being spent on 'The Surge" and 'security’ - which isn’t working. Previously, in Iraq, whilst electricity was minimal, water foul, hospitals badly equiped, and corruption rife, the US built luxury bases for themselves. Now, in Afghanistan, money is being spent on US-NATO arms and occupation costs.
Afghan Officials Concerned About Effectiveness of Foreign Aid
09.04.07. Sayed Zafar Hashemi, Infozine.
Italian aid organization pulls out of Afghanistan
13.04.07. Pak Tribune.
France Investigating Video of Hostages in Afghanistan
14.04.07. VOA. Video of two French aid workers kidnapped by the 'Taleban’ more than a week ago.
Islamic Republic of Afghanistant added to list of countries eligible for assistance under the HIPC initiative
21.04.07. Harold Doan.com. To start benefiting from debt relief at the HIPC decision point, Afghanistan will need to take the following actions:
• continue the satisfactory performance under the program supported by the IMF's Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility;
• work toward regularizing its relations with creditors; and
• reach an understanding with the World Bank and IMF on a set of specific reforms to be implemented to benefit from irrevocable debt relief.
NB: What will the interest rate be – which will further economic hardship for Afghanistan?
U.N. pushes for more women`s health aid in Afghanistan
26.04.07. Pak Tribune.
Taliban releases aid worker; she pleads for 4 colleagues
29.04.07. AP. The French woman was in captivity for more than three weeks.
Armenia not going to sent peacekeepers to Afghanistan
DUMA voices concerns over NATO buildup near Russia’s borders
NATO (US?)GRANTS BULGARIA 75 MILLION EURO FOR PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION
06.04.07. sofia echo.
NATO Takes Over Area Long Held By Taliban In Southern Afghanistan
U.S. Endorses Future NATO Expansion
10.04.07. usinfo. New law authorizes $42 million in security assistance. (Or: how the US military industry makes money off NATO countries?) President Bush has signed a new law extending U.S. military assistance (sic) to aspiring NATO members Albania, Croatia, Georgia, Macedonia and Ukraine. The NATO Freedom Consolidation Act of 2007 urges admission of the five countries into the alliance and authorizes new funding for military training and equipment for them, the White House said in a statement issued April 10. …"If NATO is to continue to be the pre-eminent security alliance and serve the defense interests of its membership (ie the US), it must continue to evolve and that evolution must include enlargement," (Sen. Richard Lugar) said.
US Backs NATO Enlargement
10.04.07. UPI. Since 1994 the United States has been an ardent supporter of NATO (sic) enlargement through an open-door policy, a policy glaringly different than that of the closed shop EU. A third round of enlargement will undoubtedly go ahead in 2008-2010 that will bring in three Western Balkan states. A fourth round to the C.I.S. is threatened by developments in, and around, Georgia and Ukraine that could derail the process.
Finland mulls joining Nato transport scheme
Bush signs law on Ukrainian, Georgian accession to NATO
11.04.07. inform.kz. 'A total of $30million will be allocated from the U.S. budget to the countries between 2008 - 2112 under the same programme.’
Azerbaijan Permits US Military Use
13.04.07. Free Market News.
US resists NATO call for extra force trainers in Afghanistan
13.04.07. Raw Story. "Quite frankly, we're having trouble, and probably two thirds of those (forces requested) are for the police," US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said after a NATO meeting in Canada, in comments released by the Defense Department.
Finland and Sweden agree to join Nato force
14.04.07. Belfast Telegraph.
The US has been accusing Iran of interfering in Iraq – and Afghanistan. BUT:
NATO: no evidence on Iran's Afghan arms
19.04.07. Presstv.ir. General Peter Pace, the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs has accused Iran of providing mortars and explosives for Taliban. He however did not produce any convincing evidence in support of his claims. US General Dan McNeill, the head of the International Security Assistance Force, said he had no hard intelligence on the existence of training camps for Afghan insurgents in Iranian territory, saying "There is no report of that fact."
NATO has until end of '08 to prevail in Afghanistan
20.04.07. onlinenews.com / ICH. US Assistant Secretary of State, Daniel Fried said that NATO-led forces in Afghanistan have only until the end of 2008 to achieve success over the Taliban.
ENVIRONMENTAL TERRORISM JOINS CORPORATE OLIGARCHY
20.04.07. S. Meyer, Index Research. 'The United States has found another goldmine for corporate profit. 9/11 and [Al Qaida] are invoked. Israel is involved. The project is under the auspices of "NATO", which is a US government-run and U.S. congress-funded organization.
UAE Joining NATO-Led Mission?
NATO uses Azeri bases for Afghanistan
Armenia does not want to make choice between Russia and NATO
Panarmenian.net. Armenian Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian stated at the interview to Austrian newspaper Der Standart. "In defense issues we cooperate with Russia, Russia has military bases here, simultaneously we’ve established wide and deep relations with NATO. We do not want to make a choice between these or those. This is our idea. Nobody must make us choose. It was during the Cold War, which remained in the past," the Armenian Foreign Minister said.
U.S. Knew China Was Planning Antisatellite Test
23.04.07. nti.org. "It makes space astronomically more dangerous than it was before," said Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Michael Moseley at a recent conference. (Doesn’t the US missile defense system plan also "make space astronomically more dangerous?)
Rice heading to Norway for NATO gathering
23.04.07. eux.tv. US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will fly to Norway Thursday to meet with her NATO counterparts for discussions (sic) on Afghanistan and other issues, the US State Department said Monday.
Russia alarmed by prospect of Georgia's NATO membership
MDA To Participate In NATO Airspace Information Solution
26.04.07. newswire.ca. MacDonald, Dettwiler and AssociatesLtd.(TSX: MDA), a provider of essential information solutions, announced today that it has signed an agreement with Thales Raytheon Systems (TRS) of Fullerton, California, to participate in the execution of the NATO Air Commandand Control System (ACCS) project.
The University of Oslo Peace Group demands that NATO dissolves itself
Norway police use tear gas at Nato meeting protest
04.07. stuff.co.nz. OSLO: Police used tear gas to stop protesters who broke through barricades around Oslo city hall just before Nato foreign ministers gathered for a dinner meeting, police and a Reuters witness said.
US Missile Shield
The U.S. is busy whipping NATO members into its Missile Shield package - for whose benefit?
U.S. steps up missile system push in Eastern Europe
04.04.07. P. Spiegel, LA Times. The effort may escalate the issue into an international dispute, depending on Moscow's reaction.
Russia threatening new cold war over missile defence
11.04.07. L. Harding, Guardian. Kremlin accuses US of deception on east European interceptor bases. 'Russia is preparing its own military response to the US's controversial plans to build a new missile defence system in eastern Europe, according to Kremlin officials, in a move likely to increase fears of a cold war-style arms race.’
Ukraine President Yushchenko rejects US anti-missile system
12.04.07. Raw Story.
Standing up to the west
12.04.07. Guardian Leader. It should come as no surprise that Russia is preparing its own military response to US plans to build a missile defence system in eastern Europe.
U.S. seeks control of Europe through missile shield – Gorbachev
12.04.07. rian.ru. Deployment of U.S. missile-defense bases in Poland and the Czech Republic is an attempt by the U.S. to control Europe, the former Soviet president said Thursday.
Czech minister says U.S. defense system to be linked with NATO
12.04.07. English people. Speaking about the planned stationing of a U.S. radar base in the Czech Republic, Parkanova said "NATO (ie the US) is now concentrating on the development and construction of a defense system against short and medium-range missiles, which is considered correct by the USA as this 'shared responsibility' should be preserved and the systems should be accomplished and reinforced mutually."
Iran atom plan shows need for missile shield: Germany
13.04.07. Reuters / English sabah.
U.S. Missile Defense: Cooperation With NATO and Russia
16.04.07. State Department Reply.
The U.S. plans to design U.S. MD assets in Europe so that they could be complementary to any future NATO ballistic missile defense system.
* The proposed U.S. system in Europe is designed to counter long-range threats and would be able to protect all NATO countries facing a long-range missile threat from the Middle East.
* Some southern European countries do not face long-range threats from Iran given their proximity to the Middle East. For these countries to be protected, they require short- and medium-range missile defense systems.
* NATO has focused its missile defense development efforts on countering shorter range threats. The United States and NATO efforts are complementary and could work together to form a more effective defense for Europe.
* The U.S. will retain command and control of our missile defense system assets in Europe and will be able to link to NATO systems to ensure interoperability with their shorter range systems.
US anti-missile shield could damage European unity
17.04.07. Daily Times. STRASBOURG: A senior member of the Council of Europe on Monday joined the chorus of critics of a decision by two Central European countries to discuss hosting part of a planned US anti-missile shield, warning of risks to European unity.
U.S. seeks to sway NATO and Russia on antimissile plans
US Pushes Missile Defense Plan
19.04.07. AP / Truthout. 'Speaking ahead of talks with Russia and NATO allies, the director of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency said the strategic defense shield was needed to deter Iran and others in the Middle East from developing long range rockets that could threaten Europe or North America.’
US urged to open missile shield plan
20.04.07. The International News / anti-war.com. Nato allies urged the United States on Thursday to ensure its planned anti-missile shield could one day be broadened to cover the whole of Europe but did not commit themselves to joining the project. … Nato has since the mid-1990s been studying creating its own shield against short-range missiles for 2010, and officials said one option was that such a system could ultimately be used to protect areas of southeast Europe—Greece, Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania—that the US system will not cover.
NATO, Russia differ in assessments of missile threat- Jaap de Hoop Scheffer
itar-tass.com. Russia is ready to cooperate with the U.S. and NATO in the political, economic and diplomatic areas to prevent the emergence of those hundreds of missiles in the Middle East, Totsky said.
Planned US missile shield gets NATO backing
20.04.07. SE Times. While backing a plan to extend the US missile defence system into Europe, NATO member states agreed on Thursday (April 19th) that the territory of all 26 nations in the bloc must be protected from potential missile threats.
"The unanimous view was that the principle of the indivisibility of security should apply," NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer told reporters following high-level consultations at the Alliance's headquarters in Brussels. "There is a shared desire that any US system should be complementary to any NATO missile defence system." (The NATO system IS the U.S system)
NATO ministers to focus on missile defenses, Afghanistan
25.04.07. AP/IHT. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to lead a new effort to persuade (sic) Russia to soften its opposition to Washington’s missile defense plans when Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov joins the NATO talks.
Missile-Defense Plan No Threat to Russia, Rice Says
26.04.07. M. Landler, NYTimes/anti-war.com.
'Grave concern' as Putin freezes defence pact
27.04.07. Australian News / anti-war.com. 'In heated NATO talks in Oslo, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned that Russia was to halt its application of the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) treaty and could even pull out if the allies did not endorse it.
NATO United on missile defence approach
27.04.07. NATO press release.
NATO calls for calm in row with Russia on missile shield
28.04.07. Wilmington Star.
8. NATO Participating Countries
Howard doubles troop numbers to Afghanistan
10.04.07. the Australian news. The existing 400 personal working with the Dutch in a Reconstruction Task Force in the Oruzgan province in the troublesome south, will be joined by a Special Operations taskforce made up of Special Air Service soldiers, Commandoes and a "solid intelligence capability", as well as an additional RAAF air surveillance radar group at Kandahar airport.
SAS troops arrive in Afghanistan: Nelson
17.04.07. The age.com. Australia currently has some 500 troops based at Tarin Khowt in the country's Oruzgan province, comprising an engineering group and their security detail. Troop numbers will reach 950 by the middle of this year and peak at 1,000 by mid-2008.
Afghanistan: Canada and the NATO allies
03.04.07. Rabble.ca. Unlike Canada, most NATO member countries are not enthusiastic about the Afghan mission. Good summary.
Retired general wants NATO to rid itself of nuclear weapons
04.04.07. Canada.com. (Registered only). A retired Canadian Forces general is calling on Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay to lead the charge to persuade NATO to turn its back on its nuclear weapons stockpile. (?Where is this stockpile?)
Canadian troops move into Helmand province in Afghanistan in NATO operation
07.02.07. Pak Tribune.
Nato troops killed in Afghanistan
08.04.07. BBC. Six Canadian soldiers were killed – the "worst single incident in Afghanistan for several months (PS: excluding NATO civilian murders, that is …)
The line from Vimy to Afghanistan
10.04.07. the record.com. It is impossible to remember what Canadian soldiers did at Vimy Ridge 90 years ago without remembering what they are doing in Afghanistan today.
Allies Meet to Discuss Afghan War, as Taliban Offensive Looms
11.04.07. T. Shanker, NY Times. Meeting in Quebec.
Canada offers forum for lecturer barred from U.S
11.04.07. Jonathan Woodward, Globe and Mail / ICH. Unable to travel to the University of Washington, Riyadh Lafta -- best known for a controversial study that estimated Iraq's body count in the U.S.-led war in Iraq at more than half a million -- will arrive at Simon Fraser University in B.C. this month to give a lecture and meet with research associates.
Canada to buy 100 more tanks for Afghanistan
14.04.07. Online news.
War is hell, Afghanistan is worse
16.04.07. Janice Kennedy, The Ottawa Citizen/ICH. 'When we lose eight smiling young men, couldn't someone somewhere just say -- out loud -- 'What a terrible and meaningless waste of lives' … We have heard endlessly about "the fallen" (and its variation, "fallen heroes"), a quaint phrase informed by Victorian imagery instead of modern reality -- in this case, unwitting targets in a vehicle blown up by an unseen device set by unseen enemies. Martial mythology notwithstanding, the "fallen" in Afghanistan have mostly been unfortunate victims. And while some may indeed have been heroic young men (or "great, great Canadian soldiers," according to one officer), the incident that took their lives resounded less with heroism and great Canadianness than with terrible tragic timing. … "If we stop everything and we don't focus on the job that has to be done over there," said Col. Ryan Jestin, commander of the Gagetown base, "the Taliban will have won."
After Deadly Week, Canada Debates Role in Afghanistan
20.04.07. NY Times/anti-war.com. Critics say that Canada continues to send troops to Afghanistan without a domestic debate over what the country wants to achieve, and they say there needs to be more planning for an exit strategy.
Canada wrestles over troop deployment in Afghanistan
22.04.07. C. Mason, IHT / anti-war.com.
Canada’s troop withdrawal vote defeated
24.04.07. Reuters / anti-war.com
Canada to send new ambassador, diplomats to Afghanistan
26.04.07. Canoe.ca / anti-war.com.
Canadians Want Troops Out of Afghanistan
26.04.07. Angus-Reid poll.
Politicians battle over role in Afghanistan
28.04.07. Hamilton Spectator. 'Afghanistan is to Canada what Iraq is to America.’
Sarkozy wants French troops out of Afghanistan
28.04.07. AP/Gulf news.
France sees no long-term military role in Afghanistan: foreign minister
28.04.07. English People.
German Jets Set Off For Afghanistan
02.04.07. Playfuls. Germany deployed eight Tornado fighter jets and 200 more troops to Afghanistan on Monday to perform reconnaissance in response to a NATO request.
Iraqi abductors of two Germans issue new ultimatum on Afghanistan
03.04.07. Monsters and Critics. The group holding two Germans hostage in Iraq has issued a new ultimatum demanding that German troops be pulled out of Afghanistan, the Foreign Ministry in Berlin said Tuesday after the ultimatum was posted on the internet.
German Tornados Placed Under NATO Command in Afghanistan
09.04.07. dw-world. Peace activisits protested the deployment in traditional Easter peace marches throughout Germany.
Pope, amid Easter’s joys, mourns 'continual slaughter’ in Iraq, worries about Afghanistan
AP / Delaware online.
US Wants Netherlands To Stay Longer In Afghanistan
Airmen in Norway contribute to NATO mission
RAF pilots asked to consider suicide flight
03.04.07. L. Glendinning, Guardian. A senior RAF officer asked fighter pilots whether they would consider suicide missions as a last resort to stop terrorists if their weapons had failed or they had run out of ammunition.
Britain wants troops out of Iraq, Afghanistan
06.04.07. Angus Reid. Daily Telegraph poll.
Relief at last for hard-pressed Fusiliers
11.04.07. D. Walsh. Uncertain future after Nato capture of Sangin prompts Taliban propaganda push
Through Helmand desert with the Dragoons
16.04.07. Tom Coghlan, Telegraph.
Life and death on the M*A*S*H shift
16.04.07. Declan Walsh, Guardian.
Britain could be fighting in Afghanistan for 10 years: A report
Poppy for Medicine in Afghanistan: A village-based counter-narcotics model
Senlis Council: # Initial findings of the Feasibility study on Opium Licensing in Afghanistan for the Production of Medicine
# Integrated control system for the licensed cultivation of poppy
# Political History of poppy licensing in Turkey
'Afghanistan faces an unprecedented security and reconstruction crisis.Resolving Afghanistan’s opium crisis is the key to the international community’s successful stabilisation and development of the country. Yet, by over-emphasising failed counter-narcotics strategies such as forced poppy eradication,the United States-led international community has aggravated the security situation, precluding the very reconstruction and development necessary to remove Afghan farmers’ need to cultivate poppy. In 2006 Afghanistan produced 92% of the world’s total illegal opium, directly involving at least 13% of the country’s population.’
Opium for the people: Extraordinary move to legalise poppy crops
01.04.07. Independent. The 'IoS' can reveal Tony Blair is considering calls to legalise poppy production in the Taliban's backyard. The plan could cut medical shortages of opiates worldwide, curb smuggling - and hit the insurgents. By Francis Elliott
AFGHANISTAN: US AND EU ANTI-DRUG STRATEGIES ARE DIVERGING
03.04.07. eurasianet. Hoping to stem burgeoning narcotics production and trafficking in Afghanistan, the Bush administration has established a "drug czar" for the country. However, the administration’s choice for the post, Thomas A. Schweich, has provoked criticism on Capitol Hill. The US move comes as European Union nations are pondering a radically different approach – the legalization of poppy production in Afghanistan.
NATO pulls disputed Afghan opium ad
25.04.07. AP/Boston Globe / USA today.
NATO's Mixed Messages on Afghanistan's Opium Crop
26.04.07. Francoise Chipaux, Le Monde / Truthout.
Tackling Afghanistan's opium problem
28.04.07. BBC. The lack of success so far has also given life to another argument - legalise and license the poppies and turn them into medicines rather than heroin.
10. Human Rights
Enemy Combatant Detainees: Habeas Corpus Challenges in Federal Court
(updated) 06.04.07. CRS Report
Combating Terrorism: The Challenge of Measuring Effectiveness
(updated) 12.03.07. CRS Report.
The Consequences of Insurgent Attacks in Afghanistan
04.07. Human Rights Watch Report. The Summary can be read here
Dirty Secrets of the War on Terror
Autumn 2006. Margaret Satterthwait, Amnesty International
'The men describe a Kafkaesque nightmare of secret transfer followed by torture at the hands of a foreign government or detention in secret prisons. They are not survivors of Latin America's "Dirty War," but of the United States' shadowy anti-terrorism tactics.’
Europeans Critical of CIA Terror Tactics
18.04.07. AP / Guardian / anti-war.com. The delegation told a congressional panel Tuesday that a CIA practice of spiriting away terrorism suspects was illegal and scheduled a news conference Wednesday to discuss their findings.
A CIA Man Speaks His Mind on Secret Abductions
20.04.07. Jeff Stein, CQ Homeland Security.
Afghanistan set to release American convicted of torturing detainees
10.04.07. Alexis Unkovic, The Jurist.
U.S. citizen says FBI ordered his torture
11.04.07. Concord Monitor/ICH. Jack Idema is the last of three U.S. citizens imprisoned in Afghanistan for running a private prison. Idema said they were hunting terrorists as part of a mission sanctioned by U.S. counterterrorism officials - a claim that U.S. officials have denied.
'American Taliban' Moved To Colorado Prison
12.04.07. Post Chronicle. John Walker Lindh, known as the "American Taliban" has been moved to the federal supermax prison in Colorado where he is being held in solitary confinement.
Bush Administration Threatens Veto of Secret Prison Measure
12.04.07. Bloomberg. Administration officials will advise President George W. Bush to veto legislation requiring him to provide lawmakers with details of the CIA's secret prisons for terrorism suspects, a White House statement said.
Afghan civilian 'war crimes’ soar
17.04.07. Human Rights Watch. The New York-based group condemned a wave of suicide bombings and other assaults by the Taliban and associated groups that it said had killed nearly 700 Afghan civilians since the beginning of 2006. "The insurgents are increasingly committing war crimes, often by directly targeting civilians," HRW terrorism and counter-terrorism director Joanne Mariner said in the report, titled "The Human Cost".
Bush Allies in Congress Block Bill That Would Require Intelligence Disclosures
17.04.07. Mark Mazzetti, NY Times / Truthout. The Bush administration's allies in Congress on Monday blocked a bill that would require the White House to disclose the locations of secret prisons run by the Central Intelligence Agency and to reveal the amount spent annually by American intelligence agencies.
Amnesty Exec: US is abuser of rights
(17?).04.07. Capitol Times. "In 2007 the idea of human rights has come under the most serious attack from the United States of America," Cox said in a talk before about 150 people at the UW-Madison Pyle Center.
AFGHANISTAN: Civilians the main victims of conflicts
19.04.07. Onlinenews. KABUL: The United Nations and two prominent human rights organisations have raised grave concerns about the increasing number of civilians affected in armed conflicts in Afghanistan.
Foreign soldiers not to be prosecuted in Afghanistan
20.04.07. Online news/ICH. Attorney General Abdul Jabar Sabit has said the soldiers of the foreign military accused of crimes will not be prosecuted in Afghanistan .
Afghanistan: MS Noori: "Handcuffed and blind-folded, I was told to keep my mouth shut."
23.04.07. Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs / Relief Web / ICH. 'I saw armed men in military uniforms running towards us. There were more than 30 men, who spoke English in American accents and Pashto [a language spoken in Afghanistan]. I think two of them were Americans and the rest were Afghans.’
DOD ending TALON military database of domestic terror threats
25.04.07. The Jurist.
Lawyers taking Rumsfeld war crimes case to Spain after German rejection
29.04.07. The Jurist. German lawyer Wolfgang Kaleck says that he will refile a war crimes complaint against former US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in Spain with the help of Spanish counterparts after the German Federal Prosecutor's office Friday rejected a bid to prosecute the suit in Germany under that country's universal jurisdiction law
Orwell at Guantanamo
03.04.07. E. Robinson, Washington Post / ICH. Here's what the Bush administration has done to the values, traditions and honor of the United States of America: An accused terrorist claims he confessed to heinous crimes so that agents of the U.S. government would stop torturing him, and no one is shocked or even surprised. There's reason to believe, in fact, that what the suspect says about torture is probably true.
US Transfers prisoners to Afghan custody
03.04.07. Reuters / abc. 'the start of a program to transfer all Afghan prisoners it holds both in Afghanistan and at Guantanamo. 12 prisoners will be moved to Pul-I-charkri . There have been revolts and escapes from this prison.
Four years in Guantánamo - the man who said no to MI5
04.04.07. V. Dodd, Guardian. 'It has now emerged that only days before Mr Banna's arrest, MI5 visited him at his home and attempted to recruit him as an informer, with the lure of a new identity, relocation and money. The Guardian has obtained this MI5 document in which the intelligence officer details, in his own words, that encounter.’
Guantanamo Conditions Worsening
04.04.07. BBC. Conditions for detainees (prisoners?) at the US military jail at Guantanamo Bay are deteriorating, with the majority held in solitary confinement, a report says. Amnesty International said the often harsh and inhumane conditions at the camp were "pushing people to the edge".
ICRC Chief Faults Rights Protection at Guantanamo
05.04.07. J. White, Washington Post. The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross said Thursday that the United States has inadequate procedures to protect the human rights of foreign detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and called for a "more robust" system to determine whether to release hundreds of men who probably will never face trial.
War Is Terrorism
06.04.07. William Blum, ICH. Hicks was taken into custody in Afghanistan in 2001. … Like so many other "terrorists" held by the United States in recent years, Hicks had been "sold" to the American military for a bounty offered by the US, a phenomenon repeated frequently in Afghanistan and Pakistan. US officials had to know that once they offered payments to a very poor area to turn in bodies that almost anyone was fair game. . Other "terrorists" have been turned in as reprisals for all sorts of personal hatreds and feuds.
Torture account sidesteps gag on Hicks
07.04.07. Australian news. David Hicks, known at the time as Mohammed Dawood, was held by the Taliban's feared enemies for two weeks. . He was neither interrogated nor physically restrained nor abused, to his surprise, given the Northern Alliance's reputation for extreme cruelty and even killing of prisoners. Then he was handed over to the Americans. . "When the US interrogators showed up, my treatment changed," Hicks later recounted. "My hands were restrained behind my back and I was forced to kneel during interrogations. US personnel would force me into painful physical positions. The US interrogators would question me and after my responses I would be slapped in the back of the head and told I was lying."
Guantanamo force-feeds detainees
MI5 blunder led to ghost flight and jail for 'extremists’
10.04.07. S. O’Neill, The Times. An inquiry into MI5's alleged complicity in the detention without trial at Guantanamo Bay of two British residents is believed to have concluded that the intelligence service made serious mistakes, The Times has learnt.
'High value' Guantanamo detainee denies al-Qaeda connection, alleges torture
16.04.07. The Jurist.
Have you received your gift pack?
22.04.07. Clive Stafford Smith, Observer. In an extract from his astonishing new book about life inside Guantanamo, human-rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith tells of the surreal world of the prison's media relations, where the only journalist with real access is one of the inmates
Canadian Guantanamo detainee Khadr formally charged with murder
24.04.07. The Jurist
Tomgram: Karen Greenberg, Will Gitmo Be with Us Forever?
26.04.07. Karen Greenberg, Tom Gram. 'I wondered whether a future president would even be capable of shutting down Guantanamo, no less our whole secret, offshore Bermuda Triangle of injustice (and the various "extraordinary rendition" operations that go with it). I finally asked Karen J. Greenberg, Tomdispatch regular, recent visitor to Guantanamo, co-editor of The Torture Papers, and Executive Director of the Center on Law and Security at the NYU School of Law, to give the problem some serious thought.’ Karen has excellent suggestions which, sadly, for lack of courage, probably won’t happen.
U.S. Wants to Limit Guantanamo Detainees' Access to Lawyers
27.04.07. Washington Post / anti-war.com 'As the legal battle over the detentions moves to a new arena, the Justice Department is trying to tightly restrict the tactics that a persistent and largely volunteer group of defense lawyers can use to challenge the government's basis for holding their clients.’
New 'high value' [al Qaeda] detainee transferred to Guantanamo by CIA
27.04.07. The Jurist. 'Abd al -Hadi al -Iraqi is suspected of coordinating cross-border attackes on US forces in Afghanistan from Pakistan …’
Senators spar over habeas rights of Guantanamo detainees
27.04.07. The Jurist. (Flather, flather).
CIA held suspect in secret prison for months
28.04.07. IHT / ICH. The CIA held a captured [Al Qaeda] leader in a secret prison since autumn and transferred him a week ago to the U.S. military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, officials said Friday.
82 Inmates Cleared but Still Held at Guantanamo
29.04.07. C.Whitlock, Washington Post. U.S. Cites Difficulty Deporting Detainees
NATO not suspending transfer of prisoners to Afghanistan: NATO chief
22.04.07. Engllsh People. 'NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said Friday that the alliance was not suspending the transfer of prisoners to the Afghan authorities despite allegations that the prisoners were mistreated at the hands of the Afghan government.’
German prosecutor rejects war crimes complaint against Rumsfeld
27.04.07. The Jurist. Claims against Gonzales and Tenet were also rejected. Federal Prosecutor Monika Harms said US courts were a more appropriate forum for investigating the matter.
German prosecutor rejects war crimes complaint against Rumsfeld
29.04.07. The Jurist. Claims against Gonzales and Tenet were also rejected. Federal Prosecutor Monika Harms said US courts were a more appropriate forum for investigating the matter.
See above, NATO / Canada
11. Some Deaths
"Since U.S. troops first set foot in Afghanistan in 2001, the Defense Department has gone to unprecedented lengths to control and suppress information about the human costs of war." ACLU .
The We, photo Reuters, Goran Tomasevic
US compensation files for Iraqi, Afghan civilian deaths released under FOIA
12.04.07. The Jurist. 479 files from Iraq, 17 files from Afghanistan.
Includes link for CIVILIAN DEATHS: THE HUMAN COST OF WAR.
ACLU Releases Files on Civilian Casualties in Afghanistan and Iraq
12.04.07. ACLU. Americans Have a Right to Unfiltered Information About the Human Costs of War, ACLU Says. The American Civil Liberties Union today made public hundreds of claims for damages by family members of civilians killed or injured by Coalition Forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. The ACLU received the records in response to a Freedom of Information Act request it filed in June 2006. … "Since U.S. troops first set foot in Afghanistan in 2001, the Defense Department has gone to unprecedented lengths to control and suppress information about the human costs of war," said Anthony D. Romero, Executive Director of the ACLU. "Our democracy depends on an informed citizenry, and it is critical that the American people have access to full and accurate information about the prosecution of the war and the implications for innocent civilians."
Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan taxi driver [Redacted] by brother. Taxi driver happened to be at site of a riot that broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing [Redacted]. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 200, 000 Afghani (appx. $3,991.22 US). See Army 30- 34, 35- 39, 40- 43, 44- 48, 49- 51, 67- 74 for related deaths. The Statement of Facts in the DOD memo appear to be copied for all relevant death investigations.
Army Bates 23 - 29 6/17/2005 Bagram, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by brother. [Redacted] had trade dealings with military personnel at Tower 14, Bagram, and was fatally shot when he approached the tower for business. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 300,000 Afghani (appx. $5,986.83 US). The claim was initially rejected by FCC with negative findings. A second investigation found the trade relationship between [Redacted] and military personnel.
Army Bates 30 - 34 5/29/2006 Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of 13 year old Afghan [Redacted] by parent. [Redacted] was selling pizza from a street cart when a riot broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing the claimant. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 200,000 Afghani (appx. $3,991.22 US).
Army Bates 35 - 39 5/29/2006 Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by cousin. [Redacted] was shot when a riot broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing [Redcated]. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 200,000 Afghani (appx. $3,991.22 US).
Army Bates 40 - 43 5/29/2006 Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by father. [Redacted] was carrying spare parts from a mechanic shop when a riot broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing [Redacted]. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 350,000 Afghani (appx. $6,984.63 US).
Army Bates 44 - 48 5/29/2006 Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan Ejmal [Redacted] by father. Ejmal [Redacted] was returning from school when a riot broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing [Redacted]. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 200,000 Afghani (appx. $3,991.22 US).
Army Bates 49 - 51 5/29/2006 Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by brother. [Redacted] was returning from work when a riot broke out after a US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing the claimant. [Redacted]'s brother states that [Redacted] was shot by Afghan National Army (ANA) personnel. Finding: the Foreign Claims Act (FCA) does not cover deaths due to actions by ANA.
Army Bates 52 - 56 4/21/2005 Old Kabul Road, approx. 5 km north of Charikar, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by brother. [Redacted] was riding his bicycle near the Company village bazaar in the Paghman district. A US military HMMWV struck [Redacted], killing him. The HMMWV may have struck [Redacted] with a side mirror, or [Redacted] may have swerved into the truck's lane. Finding: partial negligence; Compensation: 199,000 Afghani. Notes calculation of compensation is based on projected income, life expectancy, and negligence of [Redacted].
Army Bates 57 - 58 6/1/2004 Checkpoint 14, near Bagram, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan Abdul Mougeeb by uncle. Claim denied based on lack of evidence.
Army Bates 59 - 65 8/27/2005 Construction site, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of two Afghans [Redacted]. [Redacted] was driving a motorcycle and carrying one passenger when he collided with a UAH B-33 in a convoy. [Redacted] was killed and claimant's brother was seriously injured. The convoy truck swerved to avoid a construction site and when returning to the lane, struck the motorcycle. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 151,020 Afghani. Notes a "valuation chart for death claims in Afghanistan."
Army Bates 66 12/1/2001 Polecharkhi, Kabul, Afghanistan Statement of a claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by wife. [Redacted] was a factory worker for the "MINBS" when he was "bombed" by US troops.
Army Bates 67 - 74 5/29/2006 Kabul, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redcated] by son. [Redacted] was driving with his son from the Sarykhoja district to Kabul. A US Forces HEMMT vehicle lost control and crashed into several cars, including one belonging to the son. US soldiers and Afghan personnel fired into the crowd, killing [Redacted]. Finding: negligence ; Compensation: 103, 500 Afghani (appx. $2,071.63 US) for damage to car and 350,000 Afghani (appx. $6,984.62 US) for father's death.
Army Bates 75 - 78 3/4/2003 Kandahar, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by mother. [Redacted] (a young child) was hit by a US Humvee while crossing the road. [Redacted] was hospitalized for three weeks before dying of his injuries. Finding: negligence; Compensation: $1,500 US.
Army Bates 79 - 80 2/1/2004 Mazar-i-Shariff, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by a legal representative who claims power of attorney. [Redacted] was killed by US coalition forces' vehicles. "Details of this accident are recorded in Accident Report # 139-2004. This claim was originally submitted to [Redacted] Task Force 180 claims attorney." Finding: no evidence of negligence.
Army Bates 81 - 88 8/27/2005 Construction site, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghan [Redacted] by wife. [Redacted] was driving a motorcycle and carrying one passenger when he collided with a UAH B-33 in a convoy. [Redacted] (husband of claimant) was killed and [Redacted] was seriously injured. The convoy truck swerved to avoid a construction site and when returning to the lane, struck the motorcycle. Finding: negligence; Compensation: 302, 040 Afghani (appx. $6,111.76 US). Notes the "valuation chart for death claims in Afghanistan."
Army Bates 89 - 90 11/2/2003 Airport Access Road, Mazar-i-Shariff, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of Afghani [Redacted] by Mr. Baiani, legal representative. [Redacted], a taxi driver, was driving down the center of the road when he collided with a US vehicle. Findings: negligence on behalf of deceased.
Army Bates 91 8/24/2004 Accident between Orgun and Khoust, Afghanistan Claim filed on behalf of two parties [Redacted] and Atiq Ullah. [Redacted], a shop keeper in Khoust province of Afghanistan was driving when "one of the small [vehicles]" crossed his path and fired at him. The driver, [Redacted], was shot in the arm and the passenger, Atiq Ullah, was shot and killed. The engine of the car was damaged.
5 Afghan security personnel killed in S. Afghanistan
01.04.07. English People In Uruzgan province.
Four children among dead in Afghanistan violence
Afghan and foreign troops have killed at least 10 [militants] in southern Afghanistan
03.04.07. Radio Australia. The deaths were reported as two more rebels, a policeman and three nomads were reported killed in other attacks.
10 more die Waziristan tribe declares war on foreigners
04.04.07. The news. Ten more people were reported dead and scores of others were injured in renewed fighting between the warring sides, as the Ahmadzai Wazir tribe on Monday gave a call to all the tribesmen to go after the foreign militants and their local supporters to purge the area from outsiders.
Fighting leaves 60 dead near Afghan border
04.04.07. Sign On San Diego. Heavy fighting between Pakistani tribesmen and foreign [militants] allegedly linked to al-Qaeda has killed 60 people near the Afghan border, security officials said Wednesday.
Toll hits 250 as Pakistani tribesmen fight to expel foreign militants
05.04.07. D. Walsh, Guardian. Clashes between Pakistani tribesmen and foreign fighters in the tribal belt close to the Afghan border intensified sharply yesterday, bringing the official toll from two weeks of fighting to more than 250.
Afghan translator for kidnapped Italian journalist beheaded: Taliban spokesman
08.04.07. Canada com. Ajmal Naqshbandi, a freelance journalist and translator, was kidnapped along with Daniele Mastrogiacomo of the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, and a driver in southern Helmand province March 5. The driver, Sayed Agha, was beheaded, and Mastrogiacomo was released March 19 in a much criticized swap for five Taliban insurgents.The report could not be independently confirmed.
26 dead in Afghanistan airstrike, explosions
11.04.07. AFP. A suicide car bomber wounded eight civilians in southern Afghanistan on Wednesday, as officials said 13 'Taliban’ died in a US airstrike and four more were killed by a mine they were planting.
Payment sought in civilian deaths
12.04.07. chroncom. Thousands of claims submitted to Army by Iraqi, Afghan families.
Over 40 including two Canadians killed in Afghanistan
12.04.07. Monsters and Critics.
53rd British soldier is killed in Afghanistan while on patrol
14.04.07. This is London.
Coalition Kills, Detains Extremists in Afghanistan, Rescues Civilians
15.04.07. Colnservative Voice. 'Coalition forces killed and captured several extremists ( sic ) in Afghanistan over the past few days, U.S. military officials reported.’
Report reveals steep rise in Afghan civilian casualties
Blast at Afghan school kills 2 students
17.04.07. Reuters. And wounds four.
U.S.-led coalition convoy hits, kills Afghan boy; 2 police killed
27 [Taliban] Killed In Afghanistan
19.04.07. AP/ My fox / ICH. U.S.-led coalition and Afghan forces clashed with Taliban fighters and called in an airstrike in southern Afghanistan, leaving 24 suspected militants dead and two coalition soldiers wounded, the coalition said Thursday.
(Cont.; see Pat Tillman. Index on Afghanistan: March 2007
The Pat Tillman cover-up continues
01.04.07. Robert Scheer, Pasadena star news. 'C'MON! The Pentagon's inspector general concludes that nine top officers were involved in the cover-up of NFL football star Cpl. Pat Tillman's "friendly fire" death, yet insists that this apparent conspiracy to conceal the truth does not rise to the level of criminality?’
After Tillman’s death, army clamped down
20.04.07. AP / Chroncom/legitgov. 'Within hours of Pat Tillman's death, the Army went into information-lockdown mode, cutting off phone and Internet connections at a base in Afghanistan, posting guards on a wounded platoon mate, and ordering a sergeant to burn Tillman's uniform. . New Army investigative documents reviewed by The Associated Press describe how the military sealed off information about Tillman's death from all but a small ring of soldiers. Officers quietly passed their suspicion of friendly fire up the chain to the highest ranks of the military, but the truth did not reach Tillman's family for five weeks. The clampdown, and the misinformation issued by the military, lie at the heart of a burgeoning congressional investigation.
Video: US military accused of 'suppressing truth', Channel 4 News, 24.04.07.
US Military Admits Errors in Hero Scandal
26.04.07. AFP / News.com. ..And while the military admitted mistakes in the case of American football star Pat Tillman, killed by "friendly fire" in Afghanistan in 2004, it said the media had blown up the case of Jessica Lynch after her capture in Iraq in 2003.
Lawmakers seek files on Tillman's death
27.04.07. AP/seattle pi.
Clashes And Bomb Attacks Kill Dozens In Afghanistan
25.04.07. Playfuls. Afghanistan has become the epicenter of violence, as bombs and clashes between rebels and security forces killed more than 20 people across the country today.
U.S. deaths in Afghanistan, region
25.04.07. Chron.com. As of Wednesday April 25, at least 316 members of the U.S. military have died in Afghanistan.
Casualties in Afghanistan escalating
26.04.07. London Free Press.Yet, in a sign the conflict is deepening, the casualty figures for the first four months of the year are sharply up. With the annual fighting season scarcely begun, at least 320 Afghan civilians and military and about 680 militants have been killed so far in 2007, according to figures compiled from Afghan, NATO and U.S. officials. That combined toll is more than double the total fatalities for the first four months of 2006.
Missiles hit Pakistani home near Afghan border; 4 suspected militants killed
27.04.07. CBS. One official suggested the missiles were launched from Afghan territory just two miles away; the U.S. military and NATO in Afghanistan denied involvement.
U.S. deaths in Afghanistan, region
27.04.07. AP. As of Friday, April 27, 2007, at least 316 members of the U.S. military have died in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Uzbekistan as a result of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to the Defense Department.
12. Future deaths
Bioterrorism and Biocrimes: The Illicit Use of Biological Agents Since 1900
08.98 (revised 02.01) W. Seth Carus
ICBUW's Uranium Weapons Briefing
01.03.07. ICBUW. An eight page (PDF) briefing covering all the main aspects of the DU issue
UK's Depleted Uranium Oversight Board Release Final Report
12.04.07. ICBUW. The Depleted Uranium Oversight Board (DUOB) was established in 2001 to oversee a testing programme for British veterans (military and civilian) who wished to know whether they had been significantly exposed to depleted uranium (DU) in the 1990/91 Gulf War or during later military operations in the Balkans. … in all 464 veterans were tested - out of a possible 50,000 who served in the Gulf and Balkan wars.
Inspector Lists Computers With Atomic Secrets as Missing
01.04.07. M. Wald, NY Times. The office in charge of protecting American technical secrets about nuclear weapons from foreign spies is missing 20 desktop computers, at least 14 of which have been used for classified information, the Energy Department inspector general reported on Friday. This is the 13th time in a little over four years that an audit has found that the department, whose national laboratories and factories do most of the work in designing and building nuclear warheads, has lost control over computers used in working on the bombs.
Nuclear Power: Outlook for New U.S. Reactors
09.03.07. CRS REPORT.
Air Force Report: Bring Back Chem Weapons
10.04.07. Wired.com. Chemical weapons have been an international taboo for decades. But now, some in the United States Air Force are pushing to use them again. A recent study out of the Air War College calls for using chemicals as "first-use weapons against terrorists" -- part of a larger pitch to rethink the long-time pariah of military warfare:
Uranium tests for veterans proposed
10.04.08. Star Tribune. A Senate committee OK'd a bill providing for testing veterans to see if dust from spent-uranium munitions has harmed them.
11.04.07. J. Upton, Tracy Press. Lawrence Livermore Lab up to no good.
BRIEFING FOR MPs
14.04.07. Dai Williams, Hazards of Uranium weapons in the Iraq War.
VIDEO. Poison Dust.
Thwarted Warrior: Depleted uranium and the mystery of sick and dying Gulf War vets
13.04.07. Robert C. Koehler, The Smirking Chimp/uruknet. We know about the VA scandal, the great betrayal, but what almost no one talks about are the numbers. According to Veterans Administration figures from last November, 205,000 GIs who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan, a third of the total, have sought medical care, for such problems as malignant tumors (1,584), endocrinal and metabolic diseases (36,409), nervous system diseases (61,524), digestive system diseases (63,002), musculoskeletal diseases (87,590), and mental disorders (73,157), among many other conditions. One of the largest categories is "ill defined," a.k.a. mystery conditions (67,743). In comparison, a relatively small number (35,765) have sought VA care for injuries. … let's not forget to ask a more basic question: Why are all these GIs getting sick? And with even more urgent moral imperative, especially in the context of the invasion's justification, we must also ask: What about the Iraqis? Count on it, if our vets are sick, so are the Iraqis' children, their elderly, and they're making do with a shattered health-care infrastructure that makes our own look positively First World. Interesting life story about DU expert, (ex) Major Rokke.
Soldier Health Scare Back in News
VIDEO: Poisoning our Planet . and story. 15.04.07. Audrey Parente, Daytona Beach News Journal/Truthout. 'Lori Brim has joined other parents, hundreds of other sick soldiers, legislators, research scientists and environmental activists who say the cause of their problems results from exposure to depleted uranium, a radioactive metal used in the manufacture of U.S. tank armor and weapon casings.’
Income Gap Is Widening, Data Shows
29.03.07. D C Johnston, NY TIMES / Truthout.
US Tax season
16.04.07. Sabbah’s blog, uruknet.
Tax deadline in the US is traditionally on April 15, however, this year it was extended to April 17th because April 15th was a Sunday and Monday is public holidays. Anyway, here are relevant facts and figures for US taxpayers:
* Percentage of US discretionary budget spent on education and other social services: 8%
* Percentage of US discretionary budget spent for military: 57% (but the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan are funded in supplementary budget requests so must be add to that!)
* US Military Budget as a percent of World total military expenditures: 49%
* Number of Americans classified as "food insecure" in 2004: 38 million
* Number of Americans without health insurance: 45 million
* Total direct aid to Israel 1948-2006: $255 billion
* Total Cost of US Support for Israel: $1.688 trillion (not counting money and lives lost in Israel propelled wars like Iraq, not counting loss of $trillions in business with the rest of the world because of US support for Israel etc)
* Federal aid for each resident in Louisiana in 2002 (from their taxes): $1,500
* Direct U.S. aid for each Israeli citizen in 2003 (per capita income in Israel-$16,710; they do not pay taxes to the US): $581
* Direct U.S. aid for each Ethiopian citizen in 2004 (per capita income in Ethiopia - $110): $2.50
* Percentage of U.S. foreign aid that goes to Israel: 27%
* Population of Israel as percentage of total world population: 0.1%...
Most Katrina Aid From Overseas Went Unclaimed
29.04.07. Washington Post. Allies offered $854 million in cash and in oil that was to be sold for cash. But only $40 million has been used so far for disaster victims or reconstruction, according to U.S. officials and contractors.
 "The United States ranked first in value of exports to Germany in 1933, 1934 and 1938." Included were motor fuel and lubricating oil, copper and copper alloys, uranium, vanadium,m and molybdenum, iron and scrap. From Eleanor Roosevelt, by Blanche Wiesen Cook, Viking Penguin 1999, Vol. II, p. 444.
Sarah Meyer is a researcher living in the UK
The url to Index on Afghanistan: April 2007 is: http://indexresearch.blogspot.com/2007/05/index-on-afghanistan-april-2007-murder.html
or short url: http://tinyurl.com/349y47
Please see further articles on Afghanistan:
• Index on Afganistan to end 08.06.
• Index on Afghanistan September 2006
• Index on Afghanistan October 2006
• Index on Afghanistan November 2006
• Index on Afghanistan December 2006
• Index on Afghanistan: February 2007
• Index on Afghanistan: March 2007
• Nato: The Bathtub of Unreadiness
• Afghanistan: NATO is now US-ATO
Tags: Index Research, Afghanistan, US, UK, Canada, Pakistan, India, Iran, Nangarhar, NATO, Oil, Gas, Opium, Human Rights, Media, Pat Tillman, videos, contracts
Labels: Afghanistan, Canada, Index Research, India, Iran, Nangarhar, NATO, Oil, Pakistan, UK, US