A wounded Afghan boy receives treatment at a hospital in Kunar province on February 13, 2013. A NATO air strike killed 10 civilians, mostly women and children, in a raid on a Taliban hideout in a remote region of eastern Afghanistan, local officials said. “Five children, four women and a man were killed in the raid,” Kunar provincial governor, Sayed Fazulullah Wahidi, told AFP
US military deaths in Afghanistan hit 2,000; Afghan deaths pass 20,000
October 1, 2012
U.S. military deaths in the Afghan war have reached 2,000, a cold reminder of the human cost of an 11-year-old conflict that now garners little public interest at home as the United States prepares to withdraw most of its combat forces by the end of 2014.
The toll has climbed steadily in recent months with a spate of attacks by Afghan army and police — supposed allies — against American and NATO troops. That has raised troubling questions about whether countries in the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan will achieve their aim of helping the government in Kabul and its forces stand on their own after most foreign troops depart in little more than two years.
On Sunday, a U.S. official confirmed the latest death, saying that an international service member killed in an apparent insider attack by Afghan forces in the east of the country late Saturday was American. A civilian contractor with NATO and at least two Afghan soldiers also died in the attack, according to a coalition statement and Afghan provincial officials. The U.S. official spoke on condition of anonymity because the nationality of those killed had not been formally released. Names of the dead are usually released after their families or next-of-kin are notified, a process that can take several days. The nationality of the civilian was also not disclosed.
In addition to the 2,000 Americans killed since the Afghan war began on Oct. 7, 2001, at least 1,190 more coalition troops from other countries have also died, according to iCasualties.org, an independent organization that tracks the deaths.
According to the Afghanistan index kept by the Washington-based research center Brookings Institution, about 40 percent of the American deaths were caused by improvised explosive devices. The majority of those were after 2009, when President Barack Obama ordered a surge that sent in 33,000 additional troops to combat heightened Taliban activity. The surge brought the total number of American troops to 101,000, the peak for the entire war.
According to Brookings, hostile fire was the second most common cause of death, accounting for nearly 31 percent of Americans killed.
Tracking deaths of Afghan civilians is much more difficult. According to the U.N., 13,431 civilians were killed in the Afghan conflict between 2007, when the U.N. began keeping statistics, and the end of August. Going back to the U.S.-led invasion in 2001, most estimates put the number of Afghan civilian deaths in the war at more than 20,000.
The US-led coalition still has 108,000 troops in Afghanistan, 68,000 from the US.
The war began on Oct. 7, 2001. Here are some actions planned for the 11 year anniversary. Have some to add? Let us know.
[M]any nations of the third world are described as ‘underdeveloped’. These less wealthy nations are generally those that suffered under colonialism and neo-colonialism. The ‘developed’ nations are those that exploited their resources and wealth. Therefore, rather than referring to these countries as ‘underdeveloped’, a more appropriate and meaningful designation might be ‘over exploited’. Again, transpose this term next time you read about the ‘underdeveloped nations’ and note the different meaning that results.
US is destroying Afghanistan’s gene pool water and food chain with depleted uranium.
Depleted uranium is radioactive and extremely destructive to humans - with a half-life of 4.5 billion years. In other words, it takes 4.5 billion years for one kilogram of depleted uranium to reduce to a half a kilogram - the US has forever contaminated the Middle East.
The United States’ use of radioactive munitions in Afghanistan has destroyed the people’s health and mutilated the genetic future of the country, Press TV reports.
Dr. Mohammad Daud Miraki, the author of Afghanistan After Democracy: The Untold Story Through Photographic Images, told Press TV’s Kabul correspondent on Monday that the US has committed horrific crimes against the people of Afghanistan.
He said the US used depleted uranium in the country and Afghan babies were being born with severe deformities.
Exposure to depleted uranium causes genetic damage, birth defects, cancer, diabetes, immune system damage, and other serious health problems.
Miraki has described this as genocide in his book, which provides an insight into the grimness of life under the US occupation.
He says that he has seen people die without any physical signs of injuries to their bodies in Afghanistan. “And then there were bizarre scenes of birds melting on trees,” he adds.
In his book, birth defects are depicted with graphic images. He said he was overwhelmed by the number of these cases.
Miraki noted that the US used a massive amount of depleted uranium weapons in late 2001.
He went on to say that US forces are still using these weapons in the country.
Miraki’s book also says that it was a lie that the war was launched to introduce democracy in Afghanistan and accuses the US of betraying the Afghan people under the pretext of democracy and reconstruction.
“The purpose of the Afghan war” is to stop the “return of the Caliphate” - UK General
Listen from 4 mins on, especially at 5:35: “the high water mark of the last caliphate”.
A British general telling us which version of Islam is acceptable? This is an interview with UK General “Sir” Richard Dannatt.
Isn’t it incredible how he tells us what the perversion of Islam is and isnt?! And how the caliphate is only (supposedly!) the aspiration of “Al Qaeda”? This is the strategy of the west- paint the caliphate as an al Qaeda project, paint Al Qaeda as the great terrorists, and so the caliphate becomes a form of extremism in itself.
It has nothing to do with 9/11, it has nothing to do with Peace in Afghanistan. These are all reasons to invade Afghanistan for a SOLE purpose, that is to prevent the caliphate. That is why their reasons for this war changes every time.
The former head of the British army states that the objective for Britain and US in Afghanistan is preventing the establishment of a Caliphate that would expand from South Asia until it could threaten Europe at the Mediterranean. It is perhaps the clearest explanation so far from a member of the military establishment in the UK about their fear of the establishment of the Khilafah since Tony Blair’s famous speech.
Afghanistan, Graveyard of Empires, Most Recently American.
Afghanistan has once more earned its well-deserved title, “Graveyard of Empires.”
Retreating from combat is one of the two most dangerous military operations (the other is river crossing or amphibious landing under fire). Hopefully, the US can disengage from Afghanistan with the same skill and dexterity it did from Iraq. A long-overdue peace deal with Taliban would pave the way for an American withdrawal.
The US will continue strikes by drones, warplanes, and attacks by special forces from a small number of fortress bases. Pakistan will be cajoled or bribed by Washington to keep its forces active against Pashtun tribal fighters. Washington and London will keep issuing cheery claims about the success of the Afghan War.
But the hard truth cannot be avoided. All the concentrated military-technological might of the United States and its allies has been defeated by fierce Pashtun tribesmen whose primary weapons are courage, patience and legendary determination to drive out foreign invaders.
The United States had hoped to pound or bribe the Pashtun fighters that comprise Taliban and its allies, the Haqqani Group and Gulbadin Hekmatyar’s Hisbi Islami, into submission, or split them by selective peace talks.
Such tactics, backed by massive air power and ethnic cleansing of some three million Sunnis, worked for a time in Iraq.
They have failed in Afghanistan. Every sort of modern weapon save nuclear devices was used against the Afghan resistance: carpet bombing, laser-guided bombs, fuel-air explosives, cluster munitions dispending blizzards of steel shards, mines, helicopter gunships, tanks and giant armored trucks, swarms of drones, satellites, aircraft that disable roadside bombs. Deadly AC-130 gunships bristling with guns and 20mm cannon. Death squads attacking at night to kill Taliban sympathizers. Heavy artillery and rocket batteries.
Soon after 9/11, I wrote in a US newspaper article that US intervention in Afghanistan would be a disaster for all concerned. I’d been with Pashtun mujahidin, fighting first against the Soviets, then with Taliban battling the Afghan Communists. These Pashtun mountain warriors were the bravest men I had seen in covering 14 wars. They enjoyed war, even reveled in it. There was no way western forces were going to defeat them.
All the western claims about fighting “terrorism” or abused women in hijabs could not fully conceal that Afghanistan was also a war being waged for strategic geography, minerals, pipeline routes, and the desire to bar China from the region.