Monday, March 12, 2012

Kandahar – this was murder

The public in the UK were appalled at the deaths of six British soldiers in Helmand province. Then hard on the heels of that news came the massacre of 16 civilians in Kandahar.

The British soldiers at least had names and faces in the British media. The 16 civilians were just a number for most people. And naturally the authorities started talking about a “lone gunman” as a way of washing their hands of the affair.

The “lone gunman” was armed, trained and shipped off to Afghanistan by the military. They now act surprised when civilians get killed. Remember that these are the people who bombed a wedding party in Kandahar in 2008. 37 Villagers in Wech Baghtu died, including 23 children and 10 women after planes flattened houses shortly after US troops had fought Taliban insurgents nearby. But it is OK. They apologised.

The 400 British deaths pale in comparison with the uncounted – deliberately uncounted – civilian deaths in Afghanistan. And the civilians who are shot down or blown up are not feted as heroes.

Obama has finally realised the futility of this war and plans to pull out with the fig-leaf of “handing over to local forces.” This mass murder in Kandahar will only feed the cycle of revenge killings and more lives will be sacrificed on the altar of American Imperialism.

The likelihood is that the Taliban will end up in power after a further bloody civil war. This underscores the pointlessness of the sacrifice which the politicians hypocritically celebrate.

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