AFGHANISTAN | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

AFGHANISTAN

Dec 02 07:16

Watch: Obama Casually Admits His Drone Strikes Killed "Inordinate Amount" Of Innocent Civilians

Barack Obama is on his book tour for A Promised Land now four years after leaving office. During his latest interview days ago on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert he was asked about his vastly expanded drone strikes (setting a record far and above that of the prior Bush administration) as a preferred method of taking out America's 'enemies'. But it's very well-documented that drone strikes actually killed just as many or more civilians than terrorists in the process.

The former Democratic president still can't shake his legacy as the "drone president" given he still holds the record for number of ordered kill missions. Now it appears he's simply embracing the label. This latest interview may have sealed this legacy - indeed it could be his own Madeleine Albright "we think the price is worth it" moment.

Dec 02 07:01

Steve Chapman - Obama's memoir highlights his Afghanistan failure

Obama’s memoir highlights his Afghanistan failure

Shortly before becoming vice president, Joe Biden traveled to Afghanistan in his role as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. When he returned, he had a succinct assessment of the situation there: “a real mess.”

When he takes the presidential oath on Jan. 20, Biden will find not much has changed. He will find himself saddled with a host of serious problems — a raging pandemic, a struggling economy, a toxic political environment — that are largely the fault of Donald Trump. But the blame for being stuck in Afghanistan lies mostly with Barack Obama.

The first volume of his presidential memoir, “A Promised Land,” is a reminder that when it came to America’s longest war, Obama was an unequivocal failure. He expanded the war, sacrificed far more lives, spent hundreds of billions of dollars and departed with the war dragging on and with success as far away as ever.

Nov 30 07:37

Offering a ‘Return to Normalcy,’ Biden Pledges Troop Surges in Iraq and Afghanistan

After promising a return to normalcy after four turbulent years under his predecessor, President-elect Joe Biden took concrete steps in that direction today by pledging to order troop surges in both Iraq and Afghanistan on his first day in office.

“Americans today are more divided than ever before,” the former vice president said in a speech. “And those deep divisions are reflected here in Washington at the highest levels of government.”

“It seems like the last time Congress achieved a true bipartisan consensus was when we authorized the use of military force against Iraq back in 2002,” Biden said. “Those halcyon days can be ours again — and they will be, once troop levels return to 10,000 in both Iraq and Afghanistan!”

Nov 30 07:36

‘Apologize to the Afghan people’: China scoffs after Canberra demands Beijing retract poster about Aussie war-crime report

Beijing has rejected calls for an apology after a Chinese official shared a doctored poster of an Australian soldier attacking an Afghan girl, urging Canberra to instead seek forgiveness for its alleged war crimes in Afghanistan.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison demanded an official apology from Beijing after Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian posted a tweet calling for justice over a recent war-crimes report released in Australia – with an illustration of an Aussie soldier holding a knife to a child’s throat.

Nov 29 08:35

The War Crimes of Bush and Blair – Afghanistan and Iraq

“The invasion of Iraq was a bandit act, an act of blatant state terrorism, demonstrating absolute contempt for the concept of international law…We have brought torture, cluster bombs, depleted uranium, innumerable acts of random murder, misery, degradation and death to the Iraqi people and call it ‘bringing freedom and democracy to the Middle East’.” (Harold Pinter, Nobel Prize for Literature Speech, 2005)

Following the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre Twin Towers in New York, on September 11, 2001, (known as 9/11) the US declared a global war on terror. Since then it has destroyed Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. It has supported the destruction of Yemen, and the attempted destruction of Syria. (Libya, Syria and Yemen will be discussed in a subsequent post).

Nov 28 08:21

The Pentagon Has Closed Ten Bases In Afghanistan Amid Hastened Draw Down

Amid ongoing US negotiations with the Taliban which are aimed at reaching terms that would allow for a complete American troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, which is Washington's longest running war in history, at least ten US military bases have been closed since last February, The Washington Post reports.

This also comes after President Trump controversially ordered the Pentagon earlier this month to initiate a drawdown of troops in Afghanistan and Iraq of up to 2,500 from each nation.

US military file image: small base in west-central Afghan province of Parwan.
While the military has not formally confirmed the closure of the bases, which remains classified given the sensitive security nature of troop departures, the WaPo report cited both top US and Afghan officials.

The future status of the shuttered bases remains unclear in terms whether they were handed over to Afghan national forces, or if they were simply vacated or possibly destroyed.

Nov 25 19:51

Australian Afghanistan War Crimes

Quite simply put the Defence Force members who are alleged to have committed War Crimes in Afghanistan are a disgrace to all decent War Veterans and current Defence Force members.

The suspects must be investigated by the Police in the same way ordinary suspected criminals are investigated and if the Police find admissible evidence that crimes have been committed these suspects must be taken before a duly appointed Court and publicly tried. The Australian people are mature enough to handle all the grisly details of such Court cases. If they are found guilty these former and current ADF members must be imprisoned and their Service medals taken from them. If found guilty that means they are not fit and proper Australians to wear any of Australia’s medals , including Decorations for Valour and Courage.

Nov 25 09:59

Report: Afghanistan’s Booming Meth Industry May Rival Its Heroin Trade

Afghanistan is emerging as a significant global producer of methamphetamine, according to a study published on Tuesday by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA).

Afghan drug traffickers have in recent years discovered that the ephedra plant — commonly found growing wild in certain parts of the country — can be used to create ephedrine, the key component of the drug methamphetamine.

Known as crystal meth, methamphetamine is a cheaper drug than heroin, which has long been at the heart of Afghanistan’s highly lucrative illegal drug trade. According to the EMCDDA report, Afghanistan’s emerging meth trade is growing rapidly, meaning it could eventually rival the country’s established heroin industry.

“The realization that you could produce methamphetamine from a wild crop in the mountains has been a fundamental gamechanger,” Dr. David Mansfield, lead author of the EMCDDA study, told the BBC on Tuesday.

Nov 23 08:47

More than 26,000 children killed or injured in Afghanistan since 2005, as ‘appalling cost’ of conflict revealed

An average of five children have been killed or injured every day in Afghanistan since 2005, according to UN data released by Save the Children.

The “appalling cost” of the conflict has resulted in the suffering of at least 26,025 children between 2005 and 2019, according to the organization.

Ahead of its donor conference in Geneva this week, Save the Children declared Afghanistan one of the world’s most dangerous countries for children and called on nations to cease using explosive weapons in populated areas.

Nov 22 09:03

Merkel’s Germany Tells Trump Not to Bring Troops Home from Afghanistan

The German government has come out in opposition to President Donald Trump’s plan to bring American troops home from Afghanistan, arguing that putting an end to America’s longest war would be too “hasty”.

Members of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government said that President Trump’s planned reduction of the American military presence in Afghanistan from 4,500 troops to 2,500 troops by January 15th would endanger peace negotiations between the Taliban and the Afghan government.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said: “It shouldn’t be taken for granted that these two sides, after decades of conflict, are sitting at the negotiating table to begin talking to one another in a constructive way.”

“That’s why we shouldn’t add even more hurdles, which a rash exit from Afghanistan would lead to,” he said.

Nov 20 11:05

Trump demands Afghan withdrawal and Washington panics. But it’s time to leave, now.

With metronomic regularity, Washington discovers Afghanistan and then forgets it, a pattern that has continued for over three decades since the Soviet invasion of that country in 1979. Rarely has U.S. policy there reflected a realistic appraisal of actual American interests. That pattern continues to the present day as the Trump administration, with one foot out the door, is expected to order the drawdown of troops from Afghanistan, as well as Iraq and Somalia, before he leaves office in January.

According to the New York Times on Monday, the number of troops in Afghanistan would be halved from its current level of 4,500.

Nov 20 10:57

Why Trump Has Been Unable to End Endless Wars. US Troop Withdrawals from Afghanistan?

The Times of London reported, on November 16, that Trump’s recent installation of loyalists in top Pentagon jobs is likely to be for the purpose of fulfilling his long-term pledge to bring an end to the U.S.’ “endless wars”. It is expected that Trump will order the withdrawal of 4,500 troops from Afghanistan and so end 19 years of occupation.

There are two prominent objections to Trump’s likely proposal. Firstly, a swift withdrawal of U.S. forces, that would have to take place before January, will bring logistical chaos. However, the daily state of chaos which occupation brings to the lives of millions is barely considered.

Nov 20 08:17

The New Ruling Coalition: Opposition To Afghanistan Withdrawal Shows Its Key Factions: Greenwald

The Trump era has engendered numerous fractures, one might say realignments, in the political order. Long-time ideological allies are now adversaries, and long-time political enemies are now in full-fledged coalitions. These shifts are not temporary or Trump-dependent but enduring, because they are grounded in shared core beliefs about the defining debates shaping our new politics and how to consolidate real power: call it the Lincoln Project Syndrome.

Nov 18 08:45

Promises Kept: Trump To Withdraw Troops From Afghanistan And Iraq

According to media reports, President Trump is set to withdraw thousands of troops from Afghanistan and Iraq before January next year.

The move would be another promise kept by the President, who has long been a critic of both the Iraq War and the 19-years-running War in Afghanistan.

Thousands Of Troops To Leave Afghanistan And Iraq
US officials told the Associated Press that President Trump would take thousands of troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq, mostly from the former.

Nov 17 13:38

Pentagon announces partial withdrawal from Afghanistan – 2,500 troops to remain

The US will withdraw 500 troops from Iraq and thousands from Afghanistan - leaving around 2,500 soldiers in each country - before President Donald Trump leaves office, Acting Secretary of Defense Chris Miller has announced.
In a press briefing on Tuesday, Miller said the troop withdrawals will take place before January 15, 2021.

"I celebrate this day as we continue the president's consistent progress in completing the mission we began two decades ago," Miller told reporters, adding that the withdrawal decision was a "collaborative" one between Trump and senior US military leaders.

Nov 17 08:38

Trump Cements America First Legacy With Massive Troop Withdrawal and Deals Crushing Blow to War-Loving Left

America’s longest war is coming to an end. And it is entirely thanks to the commitment of President Trump.

Multiple news outlets reported Monday afternoon that the Trump administration plans to order another 2,000 U.S. troops home from Afghanistan by January 15, before a Biden administration can arrive and keep them deployed for another four years.

Nov 04 06:57

Toll Rises in ISIS Attack on Kabul University, Students Protest

Monday’s attack by ISIS gunmen on Kabul University continues to dominate the Afghan capital, with the death toll rising to at least 35 killed, and students holding protests over the attack on the educational institution.

The attack was quickly claimed by ISIS, though some Afghan officials are still attempting to blame the Taliban. The Taliban disavowed that almost immediately Monday, and criticized attacks on the school.

This was the second attack in Kabul in less than two weeks, both claimed by ISIS. In both cases, the attack appeared to be related to Kabul’s Shi’ite minority, with Shi’ites the target for the first, and Iranian visitors present for Monday’s attack.

Nov 03 07:19

ISIS Storms Kabul University, Killing at Least 22

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has announced a day of mourning after a terrorist attack against Kabul University. At least 22 students were killed when gunmen forced their way into the site.

The attack has been claimed by ISIS, and officials say they killed the gunmen. Signs are that the gunmen shot every student they could, including those who were fleeing, despite ISIS saying the target was a specific graduation.

This is the second strike on a Kabul education center in just two weeks, with both claimed by ISIS. The previous attack killed 24 people at an education center in a Shi’ite part of the city. In both situations, the Taliban disavowed the attacks and were critical of them.

Oct 29 07:23

‘Psychos’ fueled by ‘blood lust,’ Australian special forces tortured and executed prisoners in Afghanistan - report

A disturbing new report blows the lid on the shameful conduct of Australian special forces soldiers in Afghanistan, accusing them of waging a campaign of torture and murder across the war-torn country, and hiding the evidence.
When Australia’s elite SAS soldiers would raid villages in Afghanistan, they brought terror and death with them, a report seen by Melbourne newspaper The Age alleges. The special forces “would take the men and boys to these guest houses and interrogate them, meaning tie them up and torture them,” the report states.

By the time the SAS units left, “the men and boys would be found dead, shot in the head, sometimes blindfolded and throats slit. These are corroborated accounts,” it continues, comparing the alleged war crimes to the My Lai massacre of the Vietnam War, and to the US’ mistreatment of detainees in Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison.

Oct 26 06:16

Video shows SAS soldiers discussing a fellow operator apparently killing a 'compliant' prisoner in Afghanistan

Video footage obtained by ABC Investigations shows members of an SAS patrol in Afghanistan talking about the apparent execution of a "totally compliant" prisoner by one of their comrades.

The patrol commander describes the incident as "f***ing bullshit".

"I'm not happy with it," he says in the footage.

The metadata of the footage, taken from the helmet camera of one of the SAS soldiers, reveals the conversation took place a day after an operation in the village of Shina in Uruzgan Province in mid-May 2012.

During that raid, by members of 3 Squadron SAS, three Afghans were killed.

Oct 25 07:01

Afghan Security Forces Announce Killing of 'Al-Qaeda Key Member' Abu Muhsin al-Masri

Al-Qaeda leader Abu Muhsin al-Masri, also known as Husam Abd-al-Ra'uf and originally from Egypt, was wanted by the FBI for conspiracy to aid foreign terrorist organisations and for killing US nationals.

On Saturday, Afghan security forces claimed to have killed a leading al-Qaeda commander in the Indian sub-continent.

The Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS) tweeted on Saturday that its troops had killed Egyptian-born Abu Muhsin al-Masri, listed as Husam Abd-al-Ra'uf on the US Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) website, during an arrest operation in the Andar district of Ghazni province.

Oct 25 06:58

Australian special forces allegedly EXECUTED hog-tied Afghan prisoner because there was no space for him in helicopter

Australian special forces have been accused of killing an unarmed, bound prisoner in cold blood, as a four-year probe into alleged war crimes committed by Aussie troops in Afghanistan nears its end.

A US Marine helicopter crew chief told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) that a group of Australian soldiers shot and killed an Afghan prisoner as they were preparing to be airlifted after a raid.

According to the marine, identified only as Josh, the Aussie commandos radioed his helicopter to tell them they needed transportation for seven prisoners captured during the operation.

“And you just heard this silence, and then we heard a pop. And then they said, ‘OK, we have six prisoners’,” Josh told the Australian outlet.

The US marine said it was the first time he had seen something he couldn’t “morally justify,” as the prisoner had already been detained and posed no threat to the Aussie forces.

Oct 25 06:10

At least 18 killed, 57 wounded in Afghanistan suicide attack

At least 18 people were killed and 17 wounded in a suicide attack Saturday in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul, the interior ministry said.

The explosion struck outside an education center in a heavily Shiite neighborhood of western Kabul, Dasht-e-Barchi.

Interior Ministry spokesman Tariq Arian says that the attacker was trying to enter the center when he was stopped by security guards.

According to Arian, the casualty toll may rise further, as family members of victims of the suicide bombing are still searching the several different hospitals where the wounded have been taken.

Oct 24 07:54

Two Decades After 9/11, Pentagon Is Providing Covert Air Support To The Taliban

Nearly two decades following 9/11 and the initial invasion of Afghanistan which ostensibly had as its objective the removal and destruction of the hardline Islamist Taliban government, the United States military is providing covert support to the same "outlawed" Taliban with the latest aim of booting ISIS from the country.

A report in The Washington Post on Thursday details that this secret assistance focuses on the Pentagon providing air power to the Taliban as the group wars against against ISIS in Afghanistan’s northeastern Kunar Province.

Oct 24 07:07

20 ANA Personnel Killed in Taliban Attack in Nimroz: Official

At least 20 members of the Afghan Narrational Army (ANA) were killed in a Taliban attack on their outpost in Khashrod district, Nimroz province, on Thursday evening, said Jalil Ahmad Watandost, the district governor of Khashrod.

The district governor said that six others were taken hostage by the Taliban.

The official did not provide further details on the attack. Photos on social media show some of the soldiers who were reportedly taken hostage by the Taliban.

The Defense Ministry has not commented on the incident so far.

This comes amidst a sharp increase in violence across the country despite ongoing peace negotiations in Doha.

Oct 22 06:05

NATO Chief Dismisses Idea of US Afghanistan Withdrawal By Christmas

At a press conference on Wednesday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg was asked about President Trump’s recent Tweet that said all US troops would be home from Afghanistan by Christmas. Stoltenberg dismissed the idea of an imminent US withdrawal and said all NATO allies would withdraw from Afghanistan together when “the time is right,” reiterating comments he made earlier this month.

“In Afghanistan, NATO has around 12,000 troops in the Alliance’s biggest mission,” Stoltenberg said. “As part of the peace process, we have adjusted our presence. Any further adjustments remain conditions-based.”

Oct 21 06:26

US Wasted Billions of Taxpayer Dollars in Afghanistan From 2018 to 2019

The 19-year-old war in Afghanistan continues to be a huge sinkhole for US taxpayer dollars. The US government’s oversight authority that monitors waste in Washington’s Afghanistan reconstruction effort released a report this month updating its findings.

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) found that as of December 31st, 2019, Congress appropriated almost $134 billion to Afghanistan reconstruction since the 2002 fiscal year. Of that amount, SIGAR reviewed about $63 billion and found approximately $19 billion or 30 percent was lost to waste, fraud, and abuse.

Between January 1st, 2018, and December 31st, 2019, SIGAR found an additional $3.4 billion was lost to waste, fraud, and abuse. Of that total, SIGAR identified $1.5 billion in taxpayer funds that were lost to waste, $300 million lost to fraud, and $34 million lost to abuse. The remaining $1.6 billion was allocated to counter-narcotics, which SIGAR believes was also wasted.

Oct 19 06:12

Taliban: US Violating Signed Peace Deal With Recent Airstrikes in Afghanistan

The February 29 Doha Agreement between the US and Taliban was meant to end the war in Afghanistan, and yet might. The deal had a number of provisions, including for the US and Taliban to not fight one another during the process.

It’s not surprising, then, that the Taliban is angry at a recent surge of US airstrikes, mostly in Helmand Province, where the Taliban was fighting the Afghan government, or airstrikes elsewhere in Afghanistan.

This is a recurring issue with the deal, as the Taliban and Afghan government have yet to reach a peace deal, and the US is using supporting the government as an excuse for strikes. Again today, spokesmen denied that they were violating the Doha Agreement with the airstrikes.

Oct 18 06:27

In Afghanistan, American Troops Patrol the Same Routes Their Fathers Did

Thousands of US soldiers continue to pace and patrol exactly the same routes as their predecessors did in 2001, fighting a seemingly endless conflict that both the American and Afghan public have long since soured on.

***

Nineteen years ago last week the United States invaded Afghanistan, a country halfway around the world that few in America had heard of and even fewer knew anything about. Today, thousands of U.S. soldiers and many more private military contractors continue to pace and patrol exactly the same routes as their predecessors did in 2001, fighting a seemingly endless and pointless conflict that both the American and Afghan public have long since soured on.

Oct 17 08:28

Afghanistan-Bound Convoy Attacked In Northwest Pakistan, NATO Armored Vehicles Torched

Pakistani officials say several armed men have attacked a convoy transporting four armored vehicles for the NATO forces in Afghanistan and set them alight.

The October 16 attack happened on the outskirts of the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar, police official Zaheer Afridi told RFE/RL.

Afridi said the attackers opened fire at the convoy to stop it, ordered the drivers to step away, and doused gasoline on the military vehicles.

The four armored vehicles were destroyed while the two trailers on which they were transported were also damaged, he added.

The fire was later put out by firefighters.

Oct 15 05:32

Thousands flee amid fighting between Taliban and Afghan forces

Tens of thousands of people in southern Afghanistan have fled their homes following days of heavy fighting between the Taliban and government forces, officials said, as violence continues to soar despite ongoing peace talks.

Taliban fighters launched a series of attacks on the city of Lashkar Gah in Helmand province over the weekend, prompting the United States to call in air raids in support of the government forces.

Oct 14 05:53

Tens Of Thousands Flee Latest Taliban Offensive, And Afghan Civilian Casualties Rise

As the Taliban launched an offensive over the weekend to take areas of Afghanistan's southern Helmand province, there were hundreds of casualties amid some of the most intense urban fighting since Afghan peace talks began last month.

Among the victims was a pregnant woman struck by a stray bullet. She survived but her fetus died in utero, apparently the result of the bullet's impact, Doctors Without Borders says.

The woman was among the Afghan civilians who appeared to have been caught in crossfire while fleeing villages near the provincial capital Lashkar Gah, says Karsten Noko, the humanitarian affairs officer for Doctors Without Borders.

The Taliban launched coordinated attacks in different parts of Helmand, says Omer Zwak, the provincial governor's spokesperson. Local authorities estimate that some 35,000 people have been displaced in the fighting, which intensified around Lashkar Gah on Sunday.

Oct 10 06:51

NATO Chief: We Will Leave Afghanistan ‘When the Time Is Right’

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg commented on the alliance’s plans in Afghanistan after President Trump declared on Twitter that US troops will be home from the country by Christmas. Stoltenberg insisted that NATO members will consult with each other and decide together when to leave Afghanistan.

“We decided to go into Afghanistan together, we will make decisions on future adjustments together, and when the time is right, we will leave together,” Stoltenberg said on Thursday. The NATO chief also hinted at a longer presence in Afghanistan, saying the alliance is “committed” to the country’s future.

“We will make decisions based on the conditions on the ground, because we think it is extremely important to continue to be committed to the future of Afghanistan, because it is in our interest to preserve the long term security of Afghanistan,” he said.

Oct 09 11:56

Trump Doubles Down on Military Out of Afghanistan by Christmas

President Trump reiterated a surprise declaration he made via Twitter on Wednesday night. In Wednesday’s tweet, the president said all US troops in Afghanistan should be home by Christmas.

Speaking to Fox Business on Thursday, Trump reinforced his desire for the Christmas deadline. “We’re down to 4,000 troops in Afghanistan. I’ll have them home by the end of the year. They’re coming home, you know, as we speak. Nineteen years is enough. They’re acting as policemen, OK? They’re not acting as troops,” he said.

President Trump’s tweet on Wednesday came just hours after National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien said there would be about 2,500 US troops in Afghanistan by early 2021. The withdrawal is scheduled to be completed by May 2021 as per the US-Taliban peace deal that was signed in February.

Oct 08 06:38

Report: 3.7 million Afghan children don't attend school

Principal Fazel Rahim says the 1,700 students in grades 1-6 at his Allah Gul Mujahid primary school just east of the Afghan capital have no proper classrooms, safe drinking water or sanitary restrooms.

Oct 08 06:10

Trump: All US Troops in Afghanistan Should Be ‘Home by Christmas’

On Wednesday, President Trump made a new comment on the pullout of Afghanistan, saying that it is now his intention to have all remaining US troops out of Afghanistan by Christmas. That’s substantially sooner than previous statements on the matter.

This seems to be a very recent policy change. Just hours before Trump’s comments, the national security adviser said that there would still be 2,500 US troops left in Afghanistan by early 2021. This is roughly in line with previous comments on the matter.

Troop cuts in October and November are intended to get troop levels to around 4,500 in November, a goal that the Trump Administration has pushed for some time. With troop cuts ahead of schedule, even more cuts were possible.

Oct 08 06:09

US Pushes Afghanistan to Make Side Deal With Pakistan

US negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad spoke at a forum on Wednesday, calling on the Afghan government to attempt to make a side deal with Pakistan on the Taliban war, saying he believes such a deal would be important to an internal peace in Afghanistan.

The Afghan government has long had a big problem with the Pakistani government, and the US regularly blamed Pakistan for times that the Afghan War went poorly, which was most of the past 19 years.

Khalilzad, however, credited the Pakistani government and military leadership, saying they’d been “helpful” in recent Afghan diplomacy. Indeed so, as Pakistan has facilitated Taliban negotiators time and again, including lead negotiator Mullah Baradar, who was held at US behest by Pakistani forces, and released to participate in talks.

Oct 04 07:02

Evidence demands America end the Afghan war and withdraw now

In a preview of his forthcoming book “Battlegrounds,” former National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster made the sensational claim Sunday on a “60 Minutes” segment that President Trump was effectively partnering with our enemy in Afghanistan and had “cheapened the sacrifice of the 2,300 Americans” who have died in the war. Rather than cast shade on the president, however, Gen. McMaster’s claims do more to expose the bankrupt nature of establishment thinking in Washington on matters of war and peace.

Sep 29 07:50

Army Announces Fall Deployments to Afghanistan and Korea

The Army announced that a combat brigade from the 10th Mountain Division will deploy this fall to Afghanistan for a rotation to support Operation Freedom's Sentinel.

The 2nd Brigade Combat Team, based in Fort Drum, New York, will replace the 10th Mountain's 1st Brigade Combat Team and participate in the U.S. counterterrorism mission against al-Qaida and other terrorist groups, according to an Army news release.

Sep 29 07:30

Trump's envoy grilled by lawmakers over women's rights in Afghanistan

President Donald Trump’s envoy to Afghanistan faced tough questioning on Tuesday by Democratic lawmakers who accused the administration of jeopardizing the rights of Afghan women in pursuit of a peace deal.

The grilling of U.S. special representative Zalmay Khalilzad came days after the Taliban and the Afghan government entered into peace talks for the first time, a breakthrough that followed a months-long diplomatic push by the Trump administration.

But Rep. Stephen Lynch, chairman of the House Oversight Subcommittee on National Security, and other Democrats said they feared for the future of Afghan women without a firm guarantee from Washington to safeguard their rights.

Sep 28 06:04

US Envoy: Taliban Withholding Ceasefire Pending Political Settlement

US envoy and negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad says that the Taliban is not prepared to accept any ceasefires for Afghanistan right now, because they want a political settlement first. Khalilzad suggested that proposing a mutual reduction in violence would be more realistic in the near-term.

Khalilzad said the current approach of settlement then ceasefire is “not unprecedented in similar conflicts” and that the US was willing to work with both sides on agreeing to a reduction in violence.

Mutual reductions in violence have been supported by multiple sides before, but usually give way to attacks and retaliation, ending with violence actually slightly increasing. All told, violence is still down from levels before the US-Taliban deal, but still higher than anyone wants.

Sep 24 06:16

Pentagon Informs Congress It's Preparing To Have "Zero" US Troops In Afghanistan By Spring

With the Pentagon expected to reduce troops levels in Afghanistan down to 4,500 by the November elections, and with the still negotiated US-Taliban peace deal facilitating this, on Tuesday a Pentagon official told Congress it can expect American presence there to be completely ended by May 2021.

Sep 22 10:27

Now for the Real Killer: Lockdown Hunger

Long before the pandemic swept into her village in the rugged southeast of Afghanistan, Halima Bibi knew the gnawing fear of hunger. It was an omnipresent force, an unrelenting source of anxiety as she struggled to nourish her four children.

Her husband earned about $5 a day, hauling produce by wheelbarrow from a local market to surrounding homes. Most days, he brought home a loaf of bread, potatoes and beans for an evening meal.

But when the coronavirus arrived in March, taking the lives of her neighbors and shutting down the market, her husband’s earnings plunged to about $1 a day. Most evenings, he brought home only bread. Some nights, he returned with nothing.

Sep 22 06:16

Afghanistan: Over 100 Killed in Deadliest Clashes Since Intra-Afghan Talks Began

The Afghan government said on Monday that at least 57 Afghan soldiers were killed in overnight clashes with the Taliban, the bloodiest day of fighting since intra-Afghan talks began in Doha earlier this month.

The Taliban has not confirmed any casualties, but an Afghan military spokesman said 54 Taliban fighters were killed in Kunduz, Takhar, and Baghlan provinces. A spokesman from the local government of Maidan Ward Province said 26 Taliban members were killed there, bringing the total to 80.

The Afghan government took the heaviest casualties in the central province of Uruzgan, where at least 24 Afghan soldiers were killed after the Taliban attacked security checkpoints.

Sep 20 05:18

Britain, France, and Germany Spurn US Plan for Iran Sanctions

Trump Administration officials have been saying this for weeks, but on Friday reiterated their intentions to try to enforce a UN Security Council resolution that includes broad sanctions against Iran. Officials say they expect every nation to comply.

The glaring problem with this is that the resolution doesn’t exist, at least not as an active resolution the US wants. The P5+1 nuclear deal gave the US the authority to reimpose sanctions on Iran, but the US had withdrawn from that pact years ago. Though the Trump Administration argued that didn’t matter, the UN has virtually unanimously rejected their interpretation, and rejected the UN Security Council resolution. The US believes the resolution becomes active Sunday, but the reality is it just doesn’t exist legally.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These actions spell desperation on the cusp of madness, and the world is not following suit; so, what is next here, an invasion of Iran?!?

Considering just how "brilliantly" the other US occupations around the world are going, you might imagine it might just be time for a "re-think" on this; but of course, Israel's Bibi Netanyahu will not allow that to happen; he wants the US waging war against Iran, so Israel will not have to.

Sep 15 06:45

As Afghanistan Peace Talks Begin, Mish Asks "Why Bother? Just Leave!"

Of course the Taliban will not honor the deal.

So what?

They will not honor it if we stay another 20 years and waste another $10 trillion in the process.

Sep 09 03:18

Afghan assassination bid: Vice president survives attack which kills, wounds 2 dozen

Afghanistan’s First Vice-President Amrullah Saleh has been lightly injured in a bomb attack targeting his convoy in the capital, Kabul, but two dozen other people have been killed and wounded.

The bomb attack targeted Saleh’s convoy as he left his home and was heading to work in Kabul on Wednesday.

A video was released on Facebook soon after the attack, showing Saleh, with bandages on his left hand.

“I am fine but some of my guards have been wounded. My son, who was in the car with me, and I are both fine,” Saleh said.

“I have some burns on my face and hand. The blast was strong,” he added.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

America's failed effort at regime change in Afghanistan has to stop; it is insanely immoral to begin with, and bankrupting this country.

And please remember; since 9/11, there has not been a day that an American kid has known as a day without wars/asymmetric attacks and regime changes perpetrated by their country on others which are much weaker, and smaller, than is the Unhinged, Surveilled, State of Amerika.

Sep 03 05:18

Global Shock After US Sanctions Top International Court Prosecutor Over Afghan Probe

It's not just so-called "rogue states" apparently, but no one is immune from coming under Washington's cross hairs and wrath in the form of economic sanctions and travel restrictions.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo just announced sanctions on Fatou Bensouda, the head prosecutor of The Hague-based International Criminal Court (ICC), after the ICC previously opened a formal probe into US soldiers committing war crimes in Afghanistan.

This is after already revoking visas and placing travel bans into the US of other ICC personnel and their families. "Today we take the next step, because the ICC continues to target Americans, sadly," Pompeo said Wednesday.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This shouldn't "shock" anyone; this is how the Unhinged Surveilled State of Amerika rolls in the 21st century; and Mikey, Americans are being targeted because of torture and war crime accusations.

If they are utterly innocent, should they not have the opportunity to clear their names?!?

Or are you so utterly sure of their complicity, that you are attempting to NOT get these cases heard at the ICC?!? Mikey, you cannot have this both ways.

Aug 29 00:28

"Terminate Bush's War": Trump To Reduce Troops In Iraq By One-Third Just Ahead Of Election

Republican leadership at the RNC Convention this week talked a big game when it comes to "bringing the troops home" - something Trump has been promising since 2016 - but which has not yet ultimately been realized. But can he deliver now as part of a pre-election promise? It looks like the wheels are finally in motion.

Multiple reports citing Pentagon officials on Friday say up to one-third of all American soldiers will permanently return from Iraq over the next two to three months.

This would bring numbers down from 5,200 to about 3,500 according to Pentagon officials. Trump is in the meantime expected to tout an Iraq withdrawal as a success in ending the wasteful wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Aug 25 07:45

Iran’s Drug Control Chief: US Aircraft Smuggling Narcotics Out of Afghanistan

Eskandar Momeni, director general of Iran Drug Control Headquarters, said Monday that not only has the US war in Afghanistan caused an explosion in poppy cultivation, but also that US military aircraft are smuggling drugs out of the country.

Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) reported Monday that Momeni blamed the US for the explosion of the Afghan drug trade over the last 20 years.

“In the year 2000, the total production of narcotics in Afghanistan stood at about 200 tons, which rose to over 9,000 tons in 2017, an increase of about 50 times,” Momeni said during a Monday video conference with national anti-drug coordination councils, ISNA reported.

"Based on reliable information, planes operated by NATO and the United States transport these illicit drugs in our neighboring country," he added.

Aug 20 04:37

Afghan Army Tells Personnel to Be Ready to Return Fire Against Pakistan

Constant tensions along the ill-defined Afghan-Pakistan border look to be coming to a head again, with the Afghan Army issuing a statement in which they instruct personnel to prepare for retaliatory fire against the Pakistani military in case they cross the border.

This comes after an overnight incident in Kandahar, in which Pakistani artillery fired across the border, killing nine civilians and wounding scores of others in a residential area. Details on this attack are still not entirely clear.

The incidents are not clear, but not unusual, as the Durand Line border tends to be contested by both sides, and cross-border fire happens, often without a solid explanation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Would this continue to be happening, had the US not invaded Afghanistan all those years ago?!? I would suspect, most probably not.

Aug 16 05:12

Video appearing to show Afghan troops brutality sparks outrage

Authorities order an investigation into a video that shows gov't forces desecrating the bodies of Taliban fighters.

Aug 04 04:29

Afghan Warlord’s Promotion Highlights the Bankruptcy of America’s Longest War

When Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, his main political opponent, signed a power-sharing deal in May, it ended eight months of bitter post-election dispute. It also came with a disturbing price tag, one hashed out among rounds of backroom deals, tense negotiations, and desperate U.S. attempts to keep the government from imploding. Abdul Rashid Dostum, Ghani’s vice president until last year and one of the country’s most notorious warlords, demanded a promotion to the rank of marshal, only awarded twice before in Afghan history. Ghani, who’d long vowed to clean out the warlords, complied.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me completely unsurprised by these developments; the US presence in Afghanistan, was never about strengthening the government in Kabul; it was all about the pipelines and leasing them, and who controlled those activities.

Jul 30 18:20

Operation Burnham: What happened with the NZ SAS during a deadly incursion in Afghanistan

A civilian child was killed during Operation Burnham in 2010, but an inquiry has found their death was justified under international law.

Four others died, but the Burnham Inquiry couldn't determine if they were civilians or insurgents.

The long-awaited inquiry into the actions of New Zealand SAS troops during Operation Burnham in Afghanistan has been released today.

The Burnham Inquiry has also found New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) officials did not plot to cover-up the casualties, as claimed in the book Hit and Run by investigative journalists Nicky Hager and Jon Stephenson.

*Think about it..'but an inquiry has found their death was justified under international law'.*

Jul 28 04:33

UN says thousands of anti-Pakistan militants in Afghanistan

A U.N. report says more than 6,000 Pakistani insurgents are hiding in Afghanistan, most belonging to the outlawed Pakistani Taliban group responsible for attacking Pakistani military and civilian targets.

The report released this week said the group, known as the Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP), has linked up with the Afghan-based affiliate of the Islamic State group. Some of TTP's members have even joined the IS affiliate, which has its headquarters in eastern Afghanistan.

The Afghan government did not respond Sunday to requests by The Associated Press for comment.

Jul 23 04:24

Bipartisan torpedo against withdrawal from Afghanistan

The war in Afghanistan was officially launched to avenge the attacks of September 11, 2001. However, it had been prepared beforehand. For two decades, we have been explaining in these columns that it is the first in a long series of wars aimed at destroying all state structures in the broader Middle East (Rumsfeld/Cebrowski strategy) in order to control the exploitation of natural resources. The war, which was supposed to last two weeks, has been going on for 19 years. It is planned to last as long as possible. Today, personalities linked to the Pentagon are sabotaging President Trump’s partial withdrawal.

Jul 15 11:27

US Troops Withdraw From Five Bases in Afghanistan as Part of Taliban Deal

Since the United States first began its occupation of Afghanistan in 2001, remaining troops have had to aid the Kabul government in its fight against the Taliban regime. Washington is now prioritising an agreement with the Islamist group in an effort to end ongoing violence.

The US has closed down five military bases in Afghanistan as part of a deal with the Taliban agreed to more than four months ago, a White House representative revealed on Tuesday.

The agreement committed to the removal of US forces from bases within the first 135 days, said US President Donald Trump’s special representative to the talks, Zalmay Khalilzad.

Jul 08 08:14

US created, nurtured Taliban in decade-long covert op: Russia’s top security official

Russia’s top security official says the United States created and nurtured the Taliban militant group in Afghanistan in a decade-long covert operation.

“Frankly speaking, it was the United States that laid the foundation for the Taliban movement,” Head of Russia’s Security Council Nikolai Patrushev said in an interview with the Argumenty i Fakty weekly on Tuesday.

The Taliban militant group, Patrushev said, is the result of “Operation Cyclone… one of the longest and most expensive operations in the history of the CIA,” which was carried out by the US spy agency in Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989.

The operation “was aimed at financially and militarily supporting Afghan mujahedeen, who later formed the backbone of terrorist forces not only in Afghanistan but throughout the region,” Patrushev added.

The so-called mujahedeen fought the former Soviet Union forces in Afghanistan during the 1980s.

Jul 06 08:00

Seriously, Get The Hell Out Of Afghanistan

With overwhelming bipartisan support, the House Armed Services Committee has added a Liz Cheney-spearheaded amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) which throws severe roadblocks in the Trump administration’s proposed scale-down of US military presence in Afghanistan and Germany.

As The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald notes, both parties advancing the amendment cited in their arguments the completely unsubstantiated intelligence leak that was recently published by credulous mass media reporters alleging that Russia has paid bounties to Taliban fighters for killing the occupying forces in Afghanistan. Yet another western imperialist agenda once again facilitated by unforgivably egregious journalistic malpractice in the mass media.

Jul 06 07:55

BOUNTYGATE: Scapegoating Systemic Military Failure in Afghanistan

On the morning of Feb. 27, Beth Sanner, the deputy director of national intelligence for mission integration, arrived at the White House carrying a copy of the Presidential Daily Brief (PDB), a document which, in one form or another, has been made available to every president of the United States since Harry Truman first received what was then known as the “Daily Summary” in February 1946.

The sensitivity of the PDB is without dispute; former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer once called the PBD “the most highly sensitized classified document in the government,”while former Vice President Dick Cheney referred to it as “the family jewels.”

The contents of the PDB are rarely shared with the public, not only because of the highly classified nature of the information it contains, but also because of the intimacy it reveals about the relationship between the nation’s chief executive and the intelligence community.

Jul 03 07:05

Deep State Bounty Hunters

The media firestorm over alleged Russian intelligence collusion with Afghan militants to kill US troops has the hallmarks of a psy-ops orchestrated by America’s Deep State.

The real bounty hunters in this high-risk game are not Russian operatives allegedly directing militant assassins. Rather, it is domestic political enemies of Donald Trump directing US media outlets to hobble his presidency or chances of re-election.

Jul 02 12:08

Afghan Bounty Scandal Comes at Suspiciously Important Time for US Military Industrial Complex

The latest scandal, like others before it, is based on scant testimony by anonymous officials and has had the effect of pushing liberal opinion on US foreign policy into a far more hawkish direction.

Jul 02 11:31

Lee Camp: How the Media Used the Bounty Scandal to Stop the ‘Threat’ of Peace in Afghanistan

Peace seems to have exceedingly, ridiculously, laughably bad timing, this latest time in Afghanistan, says Lee Camp.

Jun 30 06:37

‘Russian bounties for Taliban’ story clearly meant to derail US military pullout, says Moscow’s special envoy to Afghanistan

Bombshell reports claiming Russia paid Afghan militants to kill US soldiers is fake news targeting President Trump's team and its attempts to withdraw troops from the country, Russia’s top Afghanistan-focused diplomat has said.

“It is clear that there are forces in the US which don’t want to withdraw from Afghanistan, (and) want a justification for their own failures. This is what it’s all about,” Zamir Kabulov, Russia’s presidential envoy to Afghanistan, told news agency RIA Novosti.

“We really shouldn’t waste time commenting on an obvious lie,” he added.

Jun 17 06:48

Despite U.S. sanctions, the International Criminal Court will keep investigating alleged war crimes in Afghanistan

President Trump declared a national emergency last Thursday — but it wasn’t about the covid-19 pandemic or police brutality or nationwide protests. Rather, the subject of the emergency declaration was the International Criminal Court, the body investigating the United States for suspected war crimes in Afghanistan.

Jun 13 04:32

Israel and the US Step Up Efforts To Intimidate the Hague War Crimes Court

Now, the ICC’s chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, looks poised finally to give the court some teeth. She is threatening to investigate two states – the US and Israel – whose actions have been particularly damaging to international law in the modern era.

The court is considering examining widespread human rights abuses perpetrated by US soldiers in Afghanistan, and crimes committed by Israeli soldiers in the occupied Palestinian territories, especially Gaza, as well as the officials responsible for Israel’s illegal settlement program.

An investigation of both is critically important: the US has crafted for itself a role as global policeman, while Israel’s flagrant violations of international law have been ongoing for more than half a century.

The US is the most powerful offender, and Israel the most persistent.

Both states have long dreaded this moment – the reason they refused to ratify the Rome Statute that established the ICC.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

No matter the findings, neither Israel or the US will take any responsibility for the evils they have perpetrated; both nations believe that they are above any international law.

May 21 12:04

US intelligence acknowledges Iran not after destabilizing Afghanistan despite Pompeo's claims

The US intelligence agency has acknowledged that Iran is not seeking to destabilize Afghanistan where the US he's engaged in an alleged peace process.

The US military intelligence announcement runs counter to previous remarks by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, The National Interest reported.

“Iran’s strategic objectives relating to Afghanistan continue to be maintaining a stable Afghan central government and security along Iran’s eastern border,” the Lead Inspector General wrote. “Iran’s objectives also include protecting Shia populations, eliminating [Daesh in Central Asia], opposing the US presence in the region, and securing Iranian economic interests.”

May 19 05:52

US’ Afghanistan Withdrawal ‘Still Moving Forward’ After News Daesh Carried Out Deadly Kabul Attack

Washington still plans on meeting its troop withdrawal goals, and the process remains on schedule, a Pentagon spokesperson said on Friday. The news comes after Daesh franchise Islamic State Khorasan claimed responsibility for a deadly attack on a Kabul maternity ward last week.

As per its February agreement with the Taliban, the US withdrawal of roughly 3,400 troops by early July is continuing apace, a Department of Defense representative said.

“We're still moving forward with the force reduction levels that we're committed to,” Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman told reporters at a Friday briefing. “That is still going forward, and we expect to meet that within the timeline laid out under the agreement with the Taliban,” Hoffman said, although noting he had “no update” on what the present number of US troops in Afghanistan is.

May 17 05:30

Welcome To The Military-Industrial Pandemic: This is the time, above all others, you can see the special interests trumping national interests.

The parallels between the war in Afghanistan and the Vietnam War are striking. In the Afghanistan Papers that were acquired by the Washington Post, the senselessness of the war is laid bare by U.S. government officials. The papers are reminiscent of the Vietnam-era Pentagon Papers and show that for years, the U.S. government has known that the war in Afghanistan is a costly and deadly exercise in futility. Afghanistan’s terrain, tribal politics, and culture have long thwarted invaders. This is something that the British and the Soviets, to the delight of U.S. officials in 1979, learned the hard way.

May 06 06:20

EXCLUSIVE: 'F*** it, we're going to war.' How George W. Bush rejected diplomacy with the Taliban to launch Afghanistan invasion after 9/11, new documentary reveals

George W. Bush told a State Department official who tried to persuade him not to invade Afghanistan: 'F*** it, we're going to war'.

The former president gave the blunt comment at Camp David days after 9/11 as he decided whether to go after the Taliban, a new documentary reveals.

Mike Morell, Bush's briefer about the CIA, said that the President remarked 'the only way to do that is militarily' - and it was too late for diplomacy.

The extraordinary anecdote features in a new documentary about the Bush White House which says he had a 'vacuum' for foreign policy that was filled by his hawkish advisers.

May 04 05:40

US military warns of ‘responses’ if Taliban violence continues

The US military in Afghanistan on Saturday urged warring parties to “return to the political path” in a rare open letter to the Taliban as a surge in violence risks shattering the peace process.

In a two-page letter to the Taliban, US Forces-Afghanistan spokesperson Colonel Sonny Leggett said “all sides” must show restraint to prevent further bloodshed.

Apr 29 06:44

Trump Wants All US Troops Immediately Out Of Afghanistan Due To Coronavirus

It appears the coronavirus pandemic may have provided the leverage President Trump needs to finally get all American troops out of the over eighteen-year quagmire in Afghanistan.

A new report this week by NBC has cited multiple senior officials to say the president "complains almost daily" that the US still has troops in Afghanistan, and that they are at risk for the spread of coronavirus.

According to NBC: "His renewed push to withdraw all of them has been spurred by the convergence of his concern that coronavirus poses a force protection issue for thousands of U.S. troops in Afghanistan and his impatience with the halting progress of his peace deal with the Taliban, the officials said."

Apr 08 04:18

Pompeo Threatens US Pullout From Afghanistan During Kabul Visit

Pompeo Told Ghani, Abdullah they would be help responsible if no power-sharing deal.

On March 23, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo bad a very unproductive visit in Kabul about the Afghan government’s post-election split. This culminated with the US pulling $1 billion in military aid from them.

The presidential election saw both Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah claiming victory, and ultimately both holding inaugurations. Pompeo demanded that they work out a deal, and warned they’ll both be held responsible if they don’t work something out.

That was apparently just the beginning of the cuts, the slashing of $1 billion, with a threat of another $1 billion cut for 2021, was followed by Pompeo threatening to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan in retaliation if the dispute continued. The State Department had not previously reported that part.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And this threat has worked out just how, please, Mr. Secretary of State, in light of the reality that this last little bit would have been music to both their individual set of ears?!?

Apr 06 12:33

Taliban warn peace deal with US near breaking point

The Taliban said their peace deal with the United States was nearing a breaking point, accusing Washington of violations that included drone attacks on civilians, while also chastising the Afghan government for delaying the release of 5,000 Taliban prisoners promised in the agreement.

Apr 01 04:22

America, We Have To End the Wars Now

Can anyone think what our society might have spent six and a half trillion dollars on instead of 20 years of war in the Middle East for nothing? How about the trillion dollars per year we keep spending on the military on top of that?

Invading, dominating and remaking the Arab world to serve the interests of the American empire and the state of Greater Israel sounds downright quaint at this point. Iraq War II, as Senator Bernie Sanders said in the debate a few weeks ago, while letting Joe Biden, one of its primary proponents, off the hook for it, was “a long time ago.” Actually, Senator, we still have troops there fighting Iraq War III 1/2 against what’s left of the ISIS insurgency, and our current government continues to threaten the launch of Iraq War IV against the very parties we fought the last two wars for. This would almost certainly then lead to war with Iran.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Doing things in precisely the same way, over and over and over again, yet expecting a different outcome, is one of the classic definitions of insanity.

Apr 01 04:15

Contractor behind troubled Afghan propaganda program billed Pentagon $425 MILLION for unaired ads — lawsuit

The Pentagon’s one-time top propaganda producer in Afghanistan billed the US millions of dollars to produce ads it knew full well would never air, let alone win hearts and minds, a lawsuit by a company whistleblower has alleged.
The Leonie Group took in upwards of $425 million in military contracts from 2008 until 2015 to produce TV, radio, and billboard ads on behalf of the US in Afghanistan, knowing the lion’s share of the propaganda would never be seen by Afghan eyes, a recently-unsealed lawsuit by Scott Kreller, the company’s former president, claims. Adding insult to injury, Leonie allegedly retaliated against Kreller for trying to clamp down on the “fraud.”

Kreller claimed he was fired in February 2017 after refusing to submit an inflated $4.5 million invoice to the US government for “double-billed” psychological operations despite “several months” of pressure “on an almost weekly basis” from the company’s owners.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am sorry, but if a huge Federal agency is pathologically incapable of following the numbers when it came to Afghani propaganda, how can it be reasonably tasked with conducting wars all over the planet?!/

the short answer is, it cannot.

Mar 31 04:19

Contractor behind troubled Afghan propaganda program billed Pentagon $425 MILLION for unaired ads — lawsuit

The Pentagon’s one-time top propaganda producer in Afghanistan billed the US millions of dollars to produce ads it knew full well would never air, let alone win hearts and minds, a lawsuit by a company whistleblower has alleged.

The Leonie Group took in upwards of $425 million in military contracts from 2008 until 2015 to produce TV, radio, and billboard ads on behalf of the US in Afghanistan, knowing the lion’s share of the propaganda would never be seen by Afghan eyes, a recently-unsealed lawsuit by Scott Kreller, the company’s former president, claims. Adding insult to injury, Leonie allegedly retaliated against Kreller for trying to clamp down on the “fraud.”

Mar 31 04:03

'Afghans may face starvation in case of further spread of COVID 19'

As the COVID 19 keeps fast spreading beyond borders across the world, the virus has now caused serious concern in Afghanistan nationwide.

Over a hundred positive coronavirus cases have so far been confirmed in the country.

The economic fallout from the COVID-19 epidemic in Afghanistan, where over 60 percent of the population live below the poverty line, has created grave misgivings among both the government and people.

That is why the Afghan government says all arrangements have been made to reduce the negative impact of putting some big cities like Kabul in quarantine.

Mar 30 06:03

Taliban Rejects Afghan Negotiation Team, Ghani Won’t Make Changes

On Friday, the Ghani government finally announced that they had appointed a negotiating team for talks with the Taliban. The team was criticized domestically for not being very inclusive, since they are all Ghani allies, and his is just one of two self-proclaimed governments.

The Taliban is now rejecting the team, saying they can’t recognize any committee that doesn’t represent all sides. The Ghani government says it is as inclusive as possible and that they won’t make any changes whatsoever.

The Afghan military further responded by attacking a Taliban hideout in Ghor Province, killing at least 13 Taliban fighters. Officials say the attack is meant to disrupt the Taliban’s ability to hit checkpoints in the area.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Afghanistan is not characterized as "The graveyard of Empires" for no good reason!!!

Mar 24 05:13

US slashes aid to Afghanistan by $1bn 'IMMEDIATELY', touts more cuts as Taliban 'peace deal' on brink of collapse

Washington will cut aid to Afghanistan by $1 billion starting immediately, after failing to resolve a fierce dispute between rival Afghan leaders, the State Department said, noting the US military withdrawal would continue.

Lamenting the failure of Afghan leaders to agree on an “inclusive government,” Pompeo said the feud between President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah had “harmed US-Afghan relations,” adding that Washington would review cooperation with the country and make significant cuts to US aid.

Mar 19 14:58

Bashing Probe of US War Crimes, Pompeo Threatens Family of ICC Staff With Consequences

"Threats against family members of ICC staff who are seeking justice is a new low, even for this administration," said Daniel Balson, Amnesty International USA's advocacy director.

Mar 19 03:22

Bashing Probe of US War Crimes, Pompeo Threatens Family of ICC Staff "With Consequences"

"If there remained any doubt that the Trump administration's hostility towards the court is fundamentally punitive and callous in nature, these doubts have now been dispelled."

by Andrea Germanos, staff writer

Amnesty International on Wednesday rebuked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo over new comments bashing the International Criminal Court and threatening court staff—and their family members—investigating alleged war crimes committed by United States forces in Afghanistan.

Pompeo suggested retaliatory actions would be in store.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Threatening the families of investigators?!?

Are you flipping kidding me?!?

I know that Pompeo self-identifies as an Evangelical, "Rapture-Read"y Christian, but in listening to this language of threats against ICC families, I am truly having a "God, save me from your followers!!" moment here.

Mar 15 05:33

Troops in Afghanistan Have Coronavirus Symptoms but No Tests, Congressman Says

A lawmaker wants answers from the Pentagon about whether coronavirus tests are being sent to military bases worldwide after he said troops in Afghanistan based miles from a town where people have contracted COVID-19 are showing symptoms.

Several U.S. troops in Afghanistan are experiencing flu-like symptoms but have tested negative for influenza, according to Rep. Mark Pocan, a Wisconsin Democrat. Now, there are concerns the troops, who are 75 miles from Iran where the coronavirus is rampant, could have COVID-19, he said.

The troops have not yet been tested for the sometimes-deadly virus though, Pocan added. The congressman said he learned of the situation after one of the service members' families contacted his office.

Mar 15 04:47

British forces to begin their final retreat from Afghanistan

After nearly two decades of military intervention in Afghanistan, the UK finally looks set to depart the country following the US peace deal with the Afghan Taliban.

According to the Times newspaper, “hundreds” of British troops are set to be withdrawn from Afghanistan by “mid-July” as part of the “first phase” of the US-Taliban peace deal.

Altogether, 330 British soldiers are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by the end of the summer. Currently there are 1,100 “regular” UK military personnel stationed in Afghanistan, most of them in and around Kabul.

Mar 12 04:36

The Taliban is allowed to read classified documents related to the Afghan peace deal, but you can’t

The details of how the U.S. military will withdraw from Afghanistan – including the types of attacks U.S. troops and the Taliban have agreed to not conduct – are part of two classified annexes to the recently signed withdrawal agreement, according to the New York Times.

While some members of Congress will be able to read the annexes, the vast majority of the American public will have no idea what their government has agreed to as part of the deal to end the war in Afghanistan, which is in its 19th year.

The U.S. military has “legitimate reasons” why it does not want some information to become public knowledge, Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said on Tuesday.

Mar 11 04:53

END BUSH’S STUPID WAR TODAY!

After 19 years of war, over $1 trillion in spending, 2,400 dead and a torrent of lies, the US may now be facing an end to its longest war.

The US invaded Afghanistan in 2001. There were three reasons: 1. to cover up the humiliation of the tough-talking Bush administration for being caught sleeping on guard duty by the 9/11 attacks; 2. To secure oil pipeline routes through Afghanistan from Central Asia down to Pakistan’s sea coast; and 3. To occupy a supposedly empty square on the Asian chessboard before China did.

Since 2001, hardly a word of truth about Afghanistan has come out of Washington. All wars are accompanied by a bodyguard of lies, as Churchill wrote, but the lies and
propaganda about Afghanistan were extraordinary and shameful.

Mar 10 05:45

US starts pulling out troops from Afghanistan

American troops have reportedly begun their initial troop withdrawal as part of the US-Taliban peace agreement, with hundreds of soldiers leaving the country on Monday with no plans for replacements.
Speaking to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity, a US official confirmed the beginning steps of the withdrawal process have begun, with plans to drop the number of US troops in the country from 13,000 to 8,600.

According to the signed peace agreement, the withdrawal process for US troops had to begin 10 days within the signing of the agreement, which took place on February 29. Defense Secretary Mark Esper approved the withdrawal on March 2. Once troop levels hit 8,600, the conditions in the country will be reassessed before further troops are pulled.

Mar 10 05:28

HOW THE NEW US-AFGHANISTAN PEACE DEAL REKINDLED A “BUSINESS FRIENDLY TALIBAN”

SOURCE: MINT PRESS
President Trump, who is up for re-election this year, has added another “peace” deal to his credentials, a deal that the president, his re-election campaign and his supporters have promoted as proof that Trump is willing and able to resist the U.S. foreign policy establishment and its ceaseless push to keep the U.S. embroiled in “forever wars.”
Yet, not unlike the much-criticized Israel-Palestine “peace” deal that was recently released by the Trump administration, there is more to the U.S.-Taliban “peace” deal than meets the eye. Indeed, while the deal will reduce and perhaps eventually even end the U.S.’ official military presence in Afghanistan, there is little indication that it will end the bloodshed or the country’s “shadow” economy that is awash in profits from the illegal drug trade and illegal mining.

Mar 06 12:29

Pompeo: US Will Take ‘All Necessary Measures’ to Prevent ICC War Crimes Probe: Pompeo says investigation undermines Afghan peace deal

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reacted angrily to the International Criminal Court (ICC) calling to investigate US war crimes, declaring the group “an unaccountable political institution masquerading as a legal body.”

Pompeo said it was reckless to even suggest an investigation after the Afghan peace deal was reached, and vowed the US would take “all necessary measures” to shield US personnel from the investigation.

This is roughly in line with US policy toward war crimes investigations, and in the past the US has threatened military action against the Netherlands, the host of the court, to shield American soldiers from charges.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF the US is doing absolutely nothing than straight-up, aboveboard interrogations, what do their soldiers have to fear?!?

The answer is, absolutely nothing.

Here's the Wikipedia description of this organization:
Description: International Criminal Court

Look at the Map: there are two countries, represented in mustard color, because they have been a "Signatory that subsequently withdrew its signature."

Notice that the two countries are... The United States and China; and the question we have to ask is, "Why did they do this?!?"

The answer has to be, that in some way, these countries have legitimately been guilty of the following: "The ICC has jurisdiction to prosecute individuals for the international crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression. It is intended to complement existing national judicial systems and it may therefore exercise its jurisdiction only when certain conditions are met, such as when national courts are unwilling or unable to prosecute criminals or when the United Nations Security Council or individual states refer situations to the Court."

IF Secretary of State didn't know what was already happening in Afghanistan, he wouldn't be making these statements or charges; unfortunately, that is not the only place where US government-mandated or US-government-enabled war crimes are taking place.

Let's look at the US enabled Saudi War Crimes in Yemen; the indiscriminate killing of infants; children; women; and the medically fragile elderly. The Causing of rampant starvation, because ships with aid are not allowed to dock at Yemen's only port, Hodeida. Let's look at the massive waves of cholera here, because all the clean water infrastructure has been destroyed by US Saudi bombings. Aid organizations, like "Medicin Sans Frontiers" having gotten their facilities bombed into rubble so frequently in Yemen, that the risk/benefit ratio was so messed up, that they had no choice but to leave Yemen.

Has my government, and does my government, currently, engage in war crimes, and crimes against humanity?!? The short answer is, every damned day, somewhere.

And until and Unless Secretary Pompeo is ready, and willing to cure this, it will continue to be a living curse on this country, wreaking retribution where we least expect it.

And I have a name for Secretary Pompeo to have checked by the poor unfortunate (or unfortunates) being "punished" by having to read this site: Hanns Scharff.

Bio: Hanns Scharff

Who was this [email protected]? He was a Nazi interrogator, who never used violence to get information out his English, Yank, and Canadian prisoners during World War II. He instead gave them the impression, by the way he spoke to them, that he already knew everything there was to know about their operation, and in fact, actually had them released from prison for artistic and cultural events. He got information from them in a way which was both brilliant, and never had to break a leg to do it.

At the end of the war, this man was so revered as an interrogator, that he was invited by the US military so greatly, that he was invited to teach his techniques to the American military. He ultimately became an American citizen, and was primarily known in this country for the beautiful pottery he created.

And Mr. Secretary of State, we need more Hanns Scharffs as our interrogators, not the second comings of the monsters who have and (who continue ) to use torture to exact confessions, which are generally not actionable, but great for conjuring an American narrative of what "baddies" they really are.

Mar 06 07:10

U.S. personnel to be investigated for alleged war crimes in Afghanistan

International Criminal Court appeals judges authorized Thursday an investigation into allegations of war crimes by United States military and intelligence personnel, Afghan forces and the Taliban in Afghanistan, in a case that has triggered a diplomatic backlash from Washington.

“The prosecutor is authorized to commence investigation in relation to alleged crimes committed on the territory of Afghanistan in the period since 1 May 2003,” Judge Piotr Hofma?ski said, adding that other alleged crimes committed on the territory of other states, which are party to the ICC, but that are sufficiently linked to the armed conflict in Afghanistan could also be investigated in the period since July 1, 2002.

Mar 06 07:09

ICC authorises investigation into alleged Afghanistan war crimes

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has authorised an investigation into possible war crimes committed in Afghanistan, which would include allegations against United States, Afghan and Taliban armed fighters.

"The Appeals chamber considers it appropriate to ... authorise the investigation," said presiding Judge Piotr Hofmanski on Thursday.

Mar 06 06:35

Spike in suicides amongst veterans of British military campaigns in Afghanistan

Veterans of Britain’s recent costly military campaigns in Afghanistan are killing themselves in record numbers.

According to the Times newspaper, some 14 former and serving army personnel have killed themselves in the past two months alone.

Mar 06 06:17

Pompeo Blasts "Renegade" & "Reckless" ICC Investigation Into US War Crimes In Afghanistan

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo lashed out in an official statement Thursday in response to the International Criminal Court (ICC) announcing it has begun an investigation into alleged US war crimes during the eighteen-year long war. The ICC said it will also probe allegations against all parties in the conflict, including the Taliban and Afghan military.

"This is a truly breathtaking action by an unaccountable political institution, masquerading as a legal body," the statement reads. "It is all the more reckless for this ruling to come just days after the United States signed a historic peace deal on Afghanistan – the best chance for peace in a generation," Pompeo added in reference to the historic US-Taliban peace deal which already appears to have unraveled.

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