Afghanistan The 'good war' continues death and repression

Issue 

While some, including US presidential hopeful Barack Obama and the Australian government of PM Kevin Rudd, attempt to present the US-led occupation of Afghanistan as a "good war" counterposed to the disastrous occupation of Iraq — seen as a distraction from the "war on terrorism" — the bloodshed and repression in the service of the US-installed warlords in Kabul continues.

According to Canadian CTV News on July 28, Canadian troops opened fire on an approaching car the previous day, killing a two-year-old boy and four-year-old girl. CTV News reported that, "A gunner, apparently fearing a suicide attack, fired a giant round from a 25-millimetre cannon after the car came too close to the Canadian convoy".

"The round tore through the girl's skull and left an open wound in the boy's chest", according to the report.

The Canadian armed forces released a statement that expressed regret for the incident and blamed suicide bombing attacks carried out by anti-occupation fighters for causing the soldiers, fearing a car bomb attack, to open fire.

Of course, the surest way to prevent a car bombing attack against occupation forces, and incidences of occupying soldiers killing civilians, would be to end the occupation — which has escalated suffering for the Afghan people and been responsible for an unknown number of civilian casualties, as the total Afghan dead has not been counted.

CTV News reported that US-based Human Rights Watch had claimed that in 2007 at least 300 civilians had been killed by occupying forces, and thousands since the 2001 invasion.

"At the Kandahar city hospital, the children's mother was frantically pacing the hallways shrieking and cursing foreign soldiers", according to CTV News. "'My innocent children have been killed by foreigners — for no reason!' said the mother."

According to CTV News, another hospital visitor stated that if he were the children's father, he would personally launch a suicide attack against Canadian troops in retaliation.

CTV News quoted a shopkeeper, Din Mohammad, warning that if such deaths continued, the occupation forces would end up being defeated like the Soviet army was in Afghanistan two decades ago.

"They must stop this", Mohammed stated. "Otherwise the day will come when everybody will stand up against the foreigners ... If things continue like this, history will repeat itself."

Other incidences involving Canadian troops included the killing of a 90-year-old man on a motorbike — who turned out to be a mentor for President Hamid Karzai — and a young man and his passenger also on a motorbike.

Outrage at massacres of civilians has grown to such an extent that even the puppet government in Kabul had criticised the US military after it murdered 47 civilians at a wedding on July 6.

According to a July 20 AFP report, nine Afghan police had been killed that day by occupation forces in air strikes. The previous week, the US military admitted to killing eight people in air strikes that it claimed was targeting the Taliban, according to AFP. Afghan officials reported that nine women and a boy had died.

According to a July 28 news report posted on <http://www.rawa.org> — the site of the Revolutionary Women of Afghanistan, which has courageously fought for women's rights and resisted both the extreme fundamentalist Taliban regime and the equally repressive US-installed regime that has replaced it — journalist Muhammad Naseer Fayyaz was arrested that day for criticising the Karzai regime.

Naseer Fayyaz is a news anchor and the host and writer of the political show Haqeeqat ("The Truth") on ATN TV. He was arrested by Afghan intelligence service agents.

The article argued that, "The reason for his arrest was his sharp criticism of the actions of Afghan government in the past four years".

"Afghan journalists are under much pressure ... Any criticism of warlords and the government polices, follows threats and ill-treatment for them.

"The case of young journalist Parviz Kambakhsh has been widely reported, who was sentenced to death for just downloading an article from the internet which, according to court, is anti-Islamic."