Exclusive: Despite what Official Washington thinks it knows, the real error on Afghan policy after the Soviets left in 1989 was not the abrupt cutoff of U.S. aid but nearly the opposite, continued CIA support for the Islamist mujahedeen and rejection of peace overtures from Moscow, writes Robert Parry.
The secret of President Obama’s strategic agreement with Afghan President Karzai is that U.S. Special Forces will continue raids to kill Taliban leaders who won’t make peace — even as the new accord is sold to the American public as an end game to the long war, Gareth Porter reports for Inter Press Service.
The long U.S. war in Afghanistan is finally being wound down by an agreement that removes U.S. combat troops in 2 1/2 years but lets a small contingent of Special Forces remain. The larger reality is that the war has gone on way too long for the American and Afghan people, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Exclusive: President Obama signed a U.S.-Afghan strategic agreement on May 1, committing U.S. combat forces to withdraw by the end of 2014 while leaving behind U.S. counter-terrorism teams for another decade. But Obama and his aides still duck a full debate over the causes of terrorism, writes ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.
Exclusive: Army Sgt. Robert Bales stands accused of murdering 17 Afghan civilians, a crime that some trace to the financial pressures his family faced back home. However, to the rich financial swindlers, the ruining of Bales’s family – and many others – is just another day’s work, writes Mark Ames.
Exclusive: President Obama’s choice in 2009 to expand – rather than wind down – the Afghan War now looks to be one of his worst decisions as the conflict drifts toward a bloody defeat. But a key factor behind his misjudgment, the myth of George W. Bush’s “successful surge” in Iraq, lives on, writes Robert Parry.
The massacre of 16 Afghans, including nine children, allegedly by a deranged U.S. Army sergeant has stirred more anger toward the decade-long, U.S.-led occupation of Afghanistan, but it also underscores how the stresses of endless war are shattering the psyches of combat soldiers, as Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman notes.
A decade into the Afghan War, the atrocities by U.S. forces – whether accidental or intentional – keep piling up along with assurances from American leaders that “this is not who we are.” But the unwillingness to impose serious penalties and the failure to adopt less violent strategies say something else to many Afghans, writes John…
U.S. officials are expressing outrage and regret over the slaughter of 16 Afghan civilians, including nine children, allegedly by a deranged U.S. staff sergeant. But the terrible rampage was not an isolated atrocity in the decade-long war in Afghanistan, as Nat Parry notes.
The Obama administration’s hopes for a negotiated end to the Afghan War are hung up on a dispute with the Karzai government over the future use of night raids by U.S. Special Forces, a tactic very unpopular with Afghans, as Gareth Porter reports for Inter Press Service.