Jessie gives his theory on Piers Morgan as to why we are in a endless war in Afghanistan.
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First off, if you have a weak stomach do not look at these photos. If you don’t know who the ‘Kill Team’ is, they were from the Bravo Company from the US Army and are accused of murdering and framing Afghan citizens for sport. This is a gruesome story but needs to be told to the American public who has no realities of the now 3 wars we are engaged in Africa.
Among the men of Bravo Company, the notion of killing an Afghan civilian had been the subject of countless conversations, during lunchtime chats and late-night bull sessions. For weeks, they had weighed the ethics of bagging “savages” and debated the probability of getting caught. Some of them agonized over the idea; others were gung-ho from the start. But not long after the New Year, as winter descended on the arid plains of Kandahar Province, they agreed to stop talking and actually pull the trigger.
Why is this so shocking? We live in a world that we humans are constantly engaged in war and killing each other, so what is a trained soldier to do? You do your job make a kill and just like a deer in the woods you photograph it.
This week, the German news magazine Der Spiegel published three photographs said to show two U.S. soldiers accused of being part of a rogue “kill team” last year during their tour in Afghanistan. Perhaps the most damaging image appears to show Spc. Morlock smiling as he lifts the head of a dead, bloodied Afghan man.
Do not read this article if you do not want to hear the realities of war. This is not a movie and the stark reality of massive civilian death and is filled through these documents.
via HUFF POST
WASHINGTON — Some 90,000 leaked U.S. military records posted online Sunday amount to a blow-by-blow account of six years of the Afghanistan war, including unreported incidents of Afghan civilian killings as well as covert operations against Taliban figures.
The online whistle-blower WikiLeaks posted the documents on its website Sunday. The New York Times, London’s Guardian newspaper and the German weekly Der Spiegel were given early access to the documents.
Our soldiers are not doing good at all, and we should outraged at these unjust wars and the fact our soldiers are so stressed that they are killing themselves.
Thirty-two soldiers took their own lives last month, the most Army suicides in a single month since the Vietnam era. Eleven of the soldiers were not on active duty. Of the 21 who were, seven were serving in Iraq or Afghanistan, the Department of Defense said.
Army officials say they don’t have any answers to why more and more soldiers are resorting to suicide.
“There were no trends to any one unit, camp, post or station,” Col. Chris Philbrick, head of the Army’s suicide prevention task force, told CNN. “I have no silver bullet to answer the question why.”
Last year, a record-breaking 245 soldiers committed suicide. The Army seems on track to surpass that number this year, as 145 soldiers have taken their lives in the first half of 2010.
Could this be why there have been wars over there for thousands of years? Or is the company line we are still trying to bring democracy to th Afghan people?
Vast deposits of iron, copper, gold, and lithium have been discovered throughout Afghanistan by US geologists, a find estimated to be worth $1 trillion.
Every time an American bomb kills civilians in Afghanistan, the U.S. loses another battle in the information war to the Taliban. And despite more accurate weapons, more careful targeting, and speedier responses to the press, the Pentagon can’t seem to figure out how to stop the setbacks in this decisive struggle for influence. A former top military official believes he may have the answer, however: let troops blog in combat, so they can ward off the accusations of atrocities as they fight.
The latest tangle over civilian casualties came last week, when American airstrikes killed dozens of innocents, during a battle in western Afghanistan. Locals said a hundred or more civilians might have died in the crossfire. In response, the U.S. military launched an investigation. Senior American officials hinted that the Taliban might’ve staged the whole thing — while the President and the Secretary of State apologized for the loss of life. After a few days, investigators concluded that the civilian death toll was only about a third of what was initially reported. But the damage was done: innocents were killed; the Americans looked blood-thirsty; and the Taliban notched another win in the campaign for hearts and minds. The Afghan president even demanded an end to American airstrikes.
Harlem rapper Immortal Technique, best known for his hugely influential underground albums Revolutionary V. 1, Revolutionary V.2 and The 3rd World, has just returned to the United States from a two week voyage to Afghanistan.
The rapper personally participated in opening of the Amin Institute.
The Amin Institute partnered with San Francisco’s OMEID International to serve the children of Afghanistan as an orphanage, school and medical facility.
Immortal Technique helped finance the project by performing in benefit concerts as well as donating his own money.
While in Afghanistan, Immortal Technique helped with final construction on the institute, gathered supplies, hired staff and spread the word. Continue reading
WASHINGTON, March 30 (Reuters) – Pentagon spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and to fight terrorism elsewhere has reached $685.7 billion since 2001, a U.S. government watchdog agency said on Monday.
The Government Accountability Office, or GAO, said the Iraq war accounted for $533.5 billion in Defense Department spending obligations through last December, while spending on operations in Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa and the Philippines totaled $124.1 billion.
The remaining $28.1 billion was for operations to defend the U.S. mainland, the GAO said in a letter to Congress dated March 30.
The spending total equals about 85 percent of the $808 billion that Congress has appropriated for military operations in the global war on terrorism since the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and Washington, the GAO said.
The $122.3 billion difference reflects multiyear contracts for procurement, military construction, research, development and other programs, the watchdog agency said. Continue reading
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration, siding with the Bush White House, contended Friday that detainees in Afghanistan have no constitutional rights.
In a two-sentence court filing, the Justice Department said it agreed that detainees at Bagram Airfield cannot use U.S. courts to challenge their detention. The filing shocked human rights attorneys.
“The hope we all had in President Obama to lead us on a different path has not turned out as we’d hoped,” said Tina Monshipour Foster, a human rights attorney representing a detainee at the Bagram Airfield. “We all expected better.”
The Supreme Court last summer gave al-Qaida and Taliban suspects held at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the right to challenge their detention. With about 600 detainees at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan and thousands more held in Iraq, courts are grappling with whether they, too, can sue to be released.
Three months after the Supreme Court’s ruling on Guantanamo Bay, four Afghan citizens being detained at Bagram tried to challenge their detentions in U.S. District Court in Washington. Court filings alleged that the U.S. military had held them without charges, repeatedly interrogating them without any means to contact an attorney. Their petition was filed by relatives on their behalf since they had no way of getting access to the legal system.
The military has determined that all the detainees at Bagram are “enemy combatants.” The Bush administration said in a response to the petition last year that the enemy combatant status of the Bagram detainees is reviewed every six months, taking into consideration classified intelligence and testimony from those involved in their capture and interrogation.
After Barack Obama took office, a federal judge in Washington gave the new administration a month to decide whether it wanted to stand by Bush’s legal argument. Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd says the filing speaks for itself.
“They’ve now embraced the Bush policy that you can create prisons outside the law,” said Jonathan Hafetz, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union who has represented several detainees.
The Justice Department argues that Bagram is different from Guantanamo Bay because it is in an overseas war zone and the prisoners there are being held as part of a military action. The government argues that releasing enemy combatants into the Afghan war zone, or even diverting U.S. personnel there to consider their legal cases, could threaten security.
The government also said if the Bagram detainees got access to the courts, it would allow all foreigners captured by the United States in conflicts worldwide to do the same. Continue reading
A research team led by geographer Thomas Gillespie of the University of California-Los Angeles used geographic analytical tools that have been successful in locating urban criminals and endangered species.
Basing their conclusion on nighttime satellite images and other techniques, the scientists suggest bin Laden may well be in one of three compounds in Parachinar, a town 12 miles from the Pakistan border. The research incorporates public reports of bin Laden’s habits and whereabouts since his flight from the Tora Bora region of Afghanistan in 2001.
The results, reported in the MIT International Review, are being greeted with polite but skeptical interest among people involved in the hunt for bin Laden, the al-Qaeda leader behind 9/11. Bin Laden’s whereabouts are considered “one of the most important political questions of our time,” the study notes.
“I’ve never really believed the sitting-in-a-cave theory. That’s the last place you would want to be bottled up,” Gillespie says. The study’s real value, he says, is in combining satellite records of geographic locations, patterns of nighttime electricity use and population-detection methods to produce a technique for locating fugitives. Continue reading
WASHINGTON (CNN) — More than one-third of all weapons the United States has procured for Afghanistan’s government are missing, according to a government report released Thursday.
The U.S. military failed to “maintain complete inventory records for an estimated 87,000 weapons — or about 36 percent — of the 242,000 weapons that the United States procured and shipped to Afghanistan from December 2004 through June 2008,” a U.S. Government Accountability Office report states.
“Accountability lapses occurred throughout the supply chain,” it says.
The Defense Department spent roughly $120 million during that period to acquire a range of small arms and light weapons for the Afghan National Security Forces, including rifles, machine guns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers.
The military also failed to properly account for an additional 135,000 weapons it obtained for the Afghan forces from 21 other countries.
“What if we had to tell families [of U.S. soldiers] not only why we are in Afghanistan but why their son or daughter died at the hands of an insurgent using a weapon purchased by the United States taxpayers? But that’s what we risk if we were to have tens of thousands of weapons we provided washing around Afghanistan, off the books,” Rep. John Tierney, D-Massachusetts, chairman of the House Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs, said at the start of a congressional hearing on the report. Continue reading
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Air Force soon will fly commercial planes outfitted with surveillance technologies that can help troops in Iraq or Afghanistan detect mines, explosives and other enemy efforts, a senior service official said Friday.
Air Force Brig. Gen. Blair Hansen detailed previously classified plans to reconfigure used and new Hawker Beechcraft Corp. aircraft under a nearly $1 billion contract to support surveillance and reconnaissance operations in both U.S.-led wars and beyond. The first two King Air 350 planes are slated to begin flights by April.
“We always need to know more because of the nature of insurgency … (and have) more information faster,” Hansen, the service’s director of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, told reporters at a Pentagon press briefing.
The Air Force said it will buy a total of 37 of the modified MC-12 aircraft, which will carry a crew of four, plus two operators, under the so-called “Project Liberty” program. United Technologies Corp.’s Pratt & Whitney is building the engines for the nearly 47-foot long aircraft.
The planes can carry up to 539 gallons of fuel and reach a maximum speed of roughly 370 miles per hour. Continue reading
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – The parents of American-born Taliban fighter John Walker Lindh are asking President George W. Bush to set their son free before Bush leaves office next month.
Lindh was sentenced to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty in 2002 to serving in the Taliban army, which violated U.S. economic sanctions against Afghanistan at that time.
At a news conference in San Francisco Wednesday, Lindh’s mother, Marilyn Walker, asked the president to show mercy during the Christmas season by commuting her son’s sentence.
Lindh initially asked for a commutation in 2004 and his lawyers have renewed the request each year.
The U.S. Department of Justice has never acted on the petition and a spokeswoman didn’t immediately return a telephone call.
via LA Times
Reporting from Washington — Antiwar groups and other liberal activists are increasingly concerned at signs that Barack Obama’s national security team will be dominated by appointees who favored the Iraq invasion and hold hawkish views on other important foreign policy issues.
The activists are uneasy not only about signs that both Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates could be in the Obama Cabinet, but at reports suggesting that several other short-list candidates for top security posts backed the decision to go to war.
“Obama ran his campaign around the idea the war was not legitimate, but it sends a very different message when you bring in people who supported the war from the beginning,” said Kelly Dougherty, executive director of the 54-chapter Iraq Veterans Against the War.
The activists — key members of the coalition that propelled Obama to the White House — fear he is drifting from the antiwar moorings of his once-longshot presidential candidacy. Obama has eased the rigid timetable he had set for withdrawing troops from Iraq, and he appears to be leaning toward the center in his candidates to fill key national security posts. Continue reading
via US News
KABUL—The war in Afghanistan reached a wrenching milestone this summer: For the second month in a row, U.S. and coalition troop deaths in the country surpassed casualties in Iraq. This is driven in large part, U.S. officials point out, by simple cause and effect. Marines flowed into southern Afghanistan earlier this year to rout firmly entrenched Taliban fighters, prompting a spike in combat in territory where NATO forces previously didn’t have the manpower to send troops. “We’re doing something we haven’t done in seven years, which is go after the Taliban where they’re living,” says a U.S. official.
With all of the attention given to Iraq little mention is made of the casualty rate in Afghanistan. The Defense Department has released some figures though, that tally the body count at 432 deaths in the Afghan region, that includes Pakistan and Uzbekistan. What’s really alarming though is they’re claiming casualties in places they haven’t even declared war yet like the Philippines, Sudan, Yemen and Eritrea. I wonder how many other countries this military is poking around in, instigating conflicts.
As of Tuesday, May 20, 2008, at least 432 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Uzbekistan as a result of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to the Defense Department. The department last updated its figures May 17 at 10 a.m. EDT.
Of those, the military reports 298 were killed by hostile action.
Outside the Afghan region, the Defense Department reports 64 more members of the U.S. military died in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Of those, two were the result of hostile action. The military lists these other locations as Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, Cuba; Djibouti; Eritrea; Ethiopia; Jordan; Kenya; Kyrgyzstan; Philippines; Seychelles; Sudan; Tajikistan; Turkey; and Yemen.
We are still at war and these pics give a great snapshot of just how dangerous and in harm’s way are our soldiers who have been made to fight an unjust war by the most corrupt adminstration in history.
I truly wonder what draft dodger George H.W Bush and Dick Cheney would do if faced with the same day to day danger. The blood on their hands gets deeper everyday.
Indict this animal and bring home the troops!
Source: International Herald Tribune
As the media engages itself in the the most trivial issues this long camapign has to offer, things such as the inhumane treatment of prisoners in Guantanamo Bay remain underreported and unrepresented in countless debates. And to boot, there is a tasteless spoof movie called Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay in theaters this weekend.
The prison was created to house “enemy combatants” stemming from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and those prisoners involved in terrorist activties that lead to 9/11. Though many have not faced trial after six years of detainment, they have virtually been cut off from all human contact and the stress of this super strict detention is driving many of them mad with “Guantanamo Pyschosis”.
International Herald Tribune: Lawyers for detainees argue that the effects of intense isolation have gradually turned the prison camp into something of a highly fortified mental ward.
At Guantánamo, there are no family visits, no televisions and no radios. A new policy will for the first time permit one telephone call a year.
In the cells where Hamdan and more than 200 of Guantánamo’s 280 detainees are now held, communication with other detainees is generally by shouting through the slit in the door used for the delivery of meals. Mail is late and often censored, lawyers say.