Saturday, June 30, 2007

Has NATO Finally Gone Too Far?

Another airstrike. More dead Afghan civilians. How many? At least 30, possibly a lot more. This account from The New York Times:

“Five houses were bombed,” the mayor said, who proceeded to name some of the victims: Hajji Noor Muhammad, Amanullah, Abdul Wajeed and Hajji Muhammad Qasam.

“These were all civilians, and the dead include women and children. There were also militants killed. We are sending a delegation to the village to investigate,” he said.

Some early reports painted an even grislier picture, putting the civilian toll at more than 100.

“People tried to escape from the area with their cars, trucks and tractors, and the coalition airplanes bombed them because they thought they were the enemy fleeing,” said Hajji Zahir, a tribal elder who said he had been in touch with residents of the effected villages. “They told me that they had buried 170 bodies so far.”

Just what are we doing in Afghanistan? The supposedly sovereign government of this country - its head of state and its parliament - have repeatedly demanded that we stop these strikes and yet we carry on regardless. If we presistently reject this country's sovereignty what are we but an army of occupation and by what right do we hold ourselves as conquerors of Afghanistan?

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