Civilian Casualties “Inevitable” in Largest Military Operation of the Afghanistan War

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rethinkafghanistan
February 10, 2010

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Military officials say that civilian casualties are “inevitable” as U.S. and allied forces launch Operation Moshtarak, the largest military action since the U.S-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. Thanks in part to conflicting messages from ISAF and in part due to some residents’ inability to flee, many civilians remain in Marjah. Statements from Brig. Gen. Nicholson, commander of the operation, indicate that he feels he has leeway to use airstrikes in the civilian area, and that he intends to use fast, furious attacks to try to overwhelm the Taliban. The problem: airstrikes in support of troops in contact are the leading cause of U.S.-caused civilian deaths.

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4 thoughts on “Civilian Casualties “Inevitable” in Largest Military Operation of the Afghanistan War

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  4. Fallujah. Gaza. Lebanon. We need to recognize that the military is simply lying about it’s tactics and strategy – the foundational concept is the same as it has always been: you win by intimidating and crushing, if need be, civilian resistance. Of course, the massive civilian destruction is always ‘accidental’, or the ‘enemy’s fault’ – and the most humanitarian armies in history always pull of bs stunts like leafletting – they did that in WW2 also – surrender or die stuff, in variations. It’s all bs and they know it and SO DO WE, no matter how much we and our pundits … including our fauxgressive pundits … pretend to believe that somehow our wondrous technology is sanitizing war. No such thing. It was never intended to do that. THE PURPOSE OF WAR IS TO INTIMIDATE POPULATIONS. And to crush them if intimidation won’t work.

    It’s been sickening to watch as war opponents morph into war defenders, as those who were once rightly skeptical of government and pentagon pronouncements of sweetness and light morph into credulous fools once again, and once again the war machine rolls on, from administration to administration, picking up steam as it goes.

    Despite the sanitized media depictions, the charming references to ‘tightening the noose’, as if this were some kind of rodeo game, what is happening in Afghanistan is an assault on a defenseless town. They know from Fallujah and Gaza that – given a few excuses and the exclusion of real reporting – they can get away with almost anything. They don’t even have to shoot up reporters anymore – folks have gotten the memo.

    And this assault is taking place in the context of a war where such assaults have been the commonplace modus operandi of the war – from assaults in the middle of the night, to drone attacks, state terror has been the (predictable) modus operandi of this war. What did we expect? There are very few problems where war is the answer. But if your question is “how do the few dominate the many”, war is always your answer.

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