By Press TV
By Anthony Mathew Jacob
God bless Washington, by the Grace of Osama, Afghanistan was occupied and with the blessings of Obama the occupation continues. It all began with the 9/11 attacks, U.S lost about 3,000 innocent civilians to these attacks and Afghanistan, millions.
Ten years have gone by and the count is still on. Thanks to Bush and all those who supported him in this war, most Afghans leave their homes without the hope of returning. It is either the Taliban’s bullets, the air-strikes by allied forces, or the U.S drones that will give them a free ticket to heaven. And those Afghans who are at home are either children or those already handicapped by Bush’s ‘war on peace’ (oops! terror).
I wonder what a mother would tell her child who is waiting for the father to return home and he doesn’t. I pity the parents who wait the whole day to hear the knock at the door but instead hear a blast on the street and realize that their child was one of those killed.
The nights are no better in Afghanistan; your house might be bombed or raided under the pretext of you being a suspected militant. If you are lucky enough to survive the shelling and night-raids, you will be sent to Guantanamo for a minimum of 5 to 6 years or until they realize you are innocent. This is Afghanistan, the result of the decade long ‘War on terror’.
Sadly, there have been no databases on casualties for the entire ten year long war. U.S General Tommy Franks once said about Afghanistan: “You know we don’t do body counts”. And I don’t blame them for that, they are so busy with killing, maiming and destroying that it will hardly give them any time to count their good deeds. But God is great; he’ll do the counting for them.
The U.S dropped around 1,228 cluster bombs (containing 248,056 bomblets) between October 2001 and March 2002. The effects of these bombs were so disastrous that the U.S was forced to stop using them in Afghanistan; later most of these bombs were either removed or destroyed.
Apart from those civilians who were immediately killed by such bombs, civilians like you and me continue to be killed by bomblets that failed to detonate on impact.
However, airstrikes and drone attacks by western forces account for majority of civilian deaths. The airstrikes have often targeted civilian homes and lives. Unfortunately, innumerable civilians are still killed in the cross-fire between the militants and armed forces. Countless of them are shot dead mistaken to be terrorists; many such attacks have also targeted women and children. The Afghan media has also reported many deliberate civilian killings by the U.S forces who later posed with the bodies as though they were trophies of war.
Apart from the direct effects of war, there are many untold and immeasurable indirect effects of war which include poverty, unemployment, hunger, malnutrition, rise in mortality rates, physical disabilities and psychological disorders. It’s difficult to analyze who won this war, but the ones who lost are certainly the poor and innocent civilians like you and me.
The only Americans and Britons who appear to have won this war are the politicians, arms dealers, lobbyists and those belonging to the 1%. The remaining 99% were just victims of their respective governments’ lies, financial mismanagement, and catastrophic foreign policies.
After a decade long war, The White House has decided to hold negotiations with the militants. The reports of the removal of Mullah Omar’s name from the U.S list of most wanted terrorists show Washington’s hypocrisy in fighting terror. There have been several meetings between U.S officials and Mullah Omar’s representatives, who are headed by Tayyib Agha, an aide to the Afghan Taliban leader, in Germany and Qatar over the past months.
According to informed sources The United States reportedly plans to release Mullah Mohammed Fazl, a top Taliban commander and high-risk detainee, who has been held at the U.S military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba since early 2002. The potential release, which has been described as an alleged attempt to facilitate peace talks between the militants and Kabul, comes despite Fazl being accused of human rights abuses.
The freedom loving Britain has also held talks with Abdul Salaam Zaeef, in London. Zaeef who was a member of the Taliban government in Afghanistan before September 11 is reportedly close to the Taliban leader Mullah Omar and is considered to be a liaison in negotiations with senior Taliban commanders. According to analysts the British government is now holding talks with the Taliban without the former preconditions that demanded they end their armed struggle, stop connections with al-Qaeda and act within the constitution of Afghanistan.
In an interview with Press TV, a member of Afghan High Peace Council Mohammad Akbari said the US has failed to keep promises of bringing peace and security to Afghanistan after a decade of war in the country. He added that US talks with the Taliban also aim to weaken the government of Afghan President Hamid Karzai. For more than a year, the US and Taliban officials have secretly negotiated the opening of a Taliban office in Qatar in return for the release of Taliban high-ranking prisoners.
It is no secret that Saudi Arabia was one the main sponsors of the 9/11 attacks and still remains the main supporter of the Wahhabi fundamentalists all over the world. Despite this, the autocratic Saudi monarchy remains an important U.S ally. The Saudi petro-dollars are used for buying American weapons for arming these terrorists all over the world and the peace-loving American regimes then wage wars to fight these terrorists under the pretext of the ‘War on terror’.
The victims of these games are civilians in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan…
Actions speak louder than words, despite all their claims of democracy, freedom and human rights, the U.S, Britain and their western allies have only plundered the nations they have claimed to save. They have taken all that they could lay their hands on…be it money, oil, resources and more than anything life.
If ever they have given anything, it is calamities and sufferings coupled with cultural, political and ideological bankruptcy.
I sincerely thank them on behalf of Japan, Vietnam, India, Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Somalia and Afghanistan, etc.
The ‘Weapons of Mass destruction’ for which Iraq was attacked was never found and the Osama Bin Laden for whom Afghanistan was attacked was finally found in Pakistan.
The American presidents and their disastrous foreign policies over these years remind me of a beautiful quote: “How many are the objects of lessons, how few the taking of lessons”. Hazrat Ali (PBUH)