How many more leaked internal reports into criminal-sounding behaviour of some Australian army and special forces personnel do we need to demand the occupation troops in Afghanistan and Iraq be removed — immediately?
The threat of nuclear annihilation is closer than at any time since the end of the Cold War as two heads of state use nuclear weapons as props in what looks like a fight between two adolescent boys.
On one side is a narcissistic bully, born to inherit great power and with credible reports that his personal life includes indulging in acts of sadism, whose policies in government are driven by a combination of xenophobia, ego and whim and who is threatening nuclear Armageddon if he doesn't get his way.
On the other side is North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.
United States President Donald Trump announced that the US would continue the ongoing war in Afghanistan, which is already the longest war in US history, Democracy Now! reported on August 22.
The Pentagon is likely to deploy about 4000 more US troops to Afghanistan in the coming months. In recent months, the US has intensified its air war in Afghanistan. During June, the US carried out 389 airstrikes in Afghanistan — the highest monthly total in five years.
Australian special forces routinely commit war crimes in Afghanistan.
Such a conclusion is strongly suggested by hundreds of pages of secret Australian Defence Force documents leaked to the ABC, which were revealed on July 11.
Under President Barack Obama, the US acknowledged killing between 2867 and 3138 people in strikes in countries like Somalia, Yemen and Pakistan.
In the waning days of his presidency, Obama took some steps to improve transparency about drone strikes, including providing the total estimated death toll. However, a new report by the Columbia Law School Human Rights Clinic and the Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies says that the US is still lagging in providing a full accounting of its drone program.
On May 30, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was the first of the “coalition of the willing” to declare he would support US President Donald Trump’s request for more occupying troops in Afghanistan. Sydney Stop the War Coalition issued this statement which is abridged below.
* * *
Sydney Stop the War Coalition opposes the Turnbull Coalition government’s decision to take up US President Donald Trump’s request and send more Australian troops to the quagmire in Afghanistan.
Hit and Run: The New Zealand SAS in Afghanistan & the Meaning of Honour
By Nicky Hager & Jon Stephenson
Potton & Burton, 2017
In this well-written and powerful book, Nicky Hager and Jon Stephenson present a barrage of evidence that “New Zealanders and their United States allies were involved in war crimes” in Afghanistan in 2010.
Afghan anti-war activist and feminist Malalai Joya sent the solidarity message below to a protest organised by Sydney Stop the War Coalition against the visit of US Vice President Mike Pence to Australia on April 29.
Joya was elected to Afghanistan’s National Assembly of Afghanistan from 2005 until early 2007. She was dismissed from her seat for denouncing the presence of warlords and war criminals in the Afghan Parliament.
President Ashraf Ghani’s first visit to Australia prompted a sizable protest on April 3 among the Australian Hazara community amid claims of institutional discrimination against Hazaras in Afghanistan.
Numbering thousands, peaceful protesters gathered from across the country and demanded from the Afghan President equality, fair distribution of resources, and an end to governmental discrimination.