Sep 19 2012

Looking Beyond Reelection: Can We Now Stop Bombing Women and Children?

(2 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Yes, anything can happen, but with the latest open disdain for 47% of the people in this country by Mitt Romney, it’s looking like a safe bet that the President will be reelected. There’s also more time for Romney to say even more stupid shit. It’s almost like he’s running against himself, so I’m looking past the President”s very likely reelection onto life or death issues.

In this introspection I sadly conclude that there is just not enough differences in this campaign when to comes to the wars and the national security state; none of them will consider rolling it back even though that is what will ultimately make us safer. Destroying the 4th amendment did not make us safer one bit.

What makes us even less safe is the hate bred through what is called the collateral death of innocent civilians that we in this country and our horse race mindset can’t seem to understand. This is not something human beings just get over and why should they? Who are we to tell them to get over it? They literally can’t get over it, and this war is spilling blood in our name as jpmassar outlined the other day in his extremely important diary.

I Know You Don’t Want to Hear It, But We Have Blood On Our Hands. 8 Women Just Killed in Afghanistan

How many times must the cannonballs fly

Before they are forever banned?

“...precision aerial munitions… as well as precision fire from aircraft…”

At least eight women have died in a Nato air strike in Afghanistan’s eastern province of Laghman, local officials say.
Nato has conceded that between five and eight civilians died as it targeted insurgents, and offered condolences.

And I’m tired of the lies. This war is not ending in 2014. The troops will not be gone. There will be troops staying past 2024, while you are asked to share sacrifice with more billionaires for a deficit that will not be a problem as long as people are unemployed. We are told full employment cannot be on the agenda, and that we can’t afford Medicare, but there’s never that scare with the military which always most grow and grow  or “keep strong” as the President says. We are told we’re going to tackle climate change while one of the biggest wasters of energy via the Department of Defense grows and will continue to grow no matter what.

Smiley faceSo in that sense all wars are dumb wars, Mr. President. And this is the exact same kind of mindset that got us into the Iraq war. War doesn’t make us safe. Our freedoms do. Indefinite detention doesn’t make us safe either, and yes the NDAA still allows that; whenever the White House’s lawyers can’t define what “associated with Al Qaeda means” when it was struck down before being reversed, it’s still open for interpretation.

The fact that Democrats defend that which came from the 2001 Afghanistan AUMF but now codified, except Congresswoman Barbara Lee of course who was smart enough to know this way back in 2001, given the damage done to our name every bit as damaging as Abu Ghraib in Bagram Air Base and others, it really makes us look like we don’t stand for anything. So the fact that this war is based on the same flawed promises about standing down when the Afghan people stand up like the war it surpassed, Vietnam, is a slap in the face. Most Americans want this war to end, but the war profiteers do not.

From both candidate’s speeches we know they don’t care what the American people want when it comes to war; they’re also both likely to allow Israel to start a war with Iran we will be dragged into. Will you follow because the President won reelection as he most likely will while telling you you need to share sacrifice with war profiteers because of a fake deficit crisis and magical right wing bond vigilantes and confidence fairies?

Hell no we won’t go for that! I hope not, because otherwise these disasters will extend past the President’s second term while domestic cuts are made using the deficits as an excuse because Washington is stuck on stupid; they don’t understand national accounting, the federal budget they write, or that the biggest cost of war is the waste of human potential globally to do better things for humanity.

Obama’s ‘Midnight’ Deal Will Stretch Afghan War to 2024

One thing crystal clear in secretive US-Afghan ‘strategic partnership agreement’: War not even close to ending

The agreement, broadly understood, codifies the ongoing conditions under which the US government agrees to operate in Afghanistan and will guide policies on the management of military bases, authority over detainees, the execution of night raids and other security operations, and will set conditions for troop levels and residual US forces that will remain in Afghanistan even after a ‘withdrawal’ commences in 2014.  The agreement also deals with ongoing financial support for the Afghan government and military into the future.


“Interestingly,” writes Jason Ditz at Anti-war.com, “with the ink now drying on the document and the US officially committed to the occupation of Afghanistan for another decade, officials are continuing to tout 2014 as the “end” of the war. This speaks to how the 2024 date, though openly discussed by the Karzai government in Afghanistan and privately acknowledged as part of the secret pact, has not been publicly presented to the American public. When they will officially spring it on us remains unclear.”


“Does anyone think our staying until 2024 is going to bring peace and stability to Afghanistan?” ask Kevin Martin and Michael Eisenscher in an op-ed today on Common Dreams. “We’ve already been there for eleven years – the longest war in our country’s history.  What do we really have to show for it?  We’ve spent almost $523 billion.  Almost 2000 Americans have been killed and another 15,300 wounded.  1000 NATO troops have lost their lives.” Eisenscher is National Coordinator of U.S. Labor Against the War and Martin is the executive director of Peace Action.

Kevin Gosztola is all over the never ending war on terror and how it terrorizes civilians globally.

More Killing in Obama’s ‘War on Terror’ Than Bush’s ‘War’

Heading into November, President Barack Obama has America on a path to further entrenching the perpetual war on “terrorism.” No longer packaged and pushed as the “war on terror,” he has cosmetically retooled how some of the worst Bush administration policies are presented to the public. In many cases, these policies are not publicly described to US citizens at all.

It has special operations forces in at least 75 countries and at least six countries-Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, The Philippines, Somalia, and Yemen-have seen the US launch covert drone strikes within their borders.

Though a violation of sovereignty, John Kerry and other Democrats have bragged and boasted about being willing to carry out operations in Pakistan. They have no problem with the fact that 344 US strikes, 292 of them launched under Obama, have killed 2,500-3,300 people including 400 to 800 civilians. They express no concerns over the reality that over 1200 have been injured by the strikes and that Pakistan greatly opposes US drone strikes.

The neoconservative war doctrine has been modernized and fine-tuned. Unilateral preemptive war is no longer conducted with a large number of forces. Instead, the government under Obama covertly launches operations with forces spread out around the globe. At any time, a small operations squad can be sent in to target and kill or a drone can be launched to extrajudicially assassinate a person.

What happened? Why has the president adopted this same mindset?

When Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama met in California for the Jan. 31 debate, their back-and-forth resembled their many previous encounters, with the Democratic presidential hopefuls scrambling for the small policy yardage between them. And then Obama said something about the Iraq War that wasn’t incremental at all. “I don’t want to just end the war,” he said, “but I want to end the mind-set that got us into war in the first place.”

I also think Nobel Peace Prize winners shouldn’t have a kill list. And seeing the human impact of these drone strikes makes my stomach curl knowing this is done for war contractors who won’t even make sure all of Afghanistan have electricity or trash removal; they only care about the no bid contract given to them by the Pentagon while too many Democrats make believe there is any point besides the theft of their natural resources and death for profit.

The Pashtuns dead from drone strikes now have no voice at all. I am appalled so using whatever talents I have, I let it show so more people will know why.

The MIC will take everything and with that everything dies. They took the identity you all displayed in 2004. Did you really mean it when you wanted to end the Bush wars and national security state? I did, and I was only 24. So did a lot of other Democrats appalled by the Bush years and its abuses, but where are they now? Their voices have been drowned out and shouted down.

What we have found from the bluster we hear from DC about this war keeping us safe while taking away our civil liberties for a fake sense of security(Oh and you loyal partisans and lapping it up) is truly a bipartisan nightmare we are all living through. So why do we continue to spend more than all countries combined to destroy lives and life? What are we fighting for? Really? What?

But it’s OK if one is a Democrat? As I explored in my last diary, we have let out party forget its inner Eugene McCarthy in 1968. That is when we stopped being the war party, for a good while, anyway. That should be remembered and embraced and the Bush years and their destruction can’t be swept under the rug so we can look forward.

So codifying those abuses, continuing a never ending global war on terror, and a national security state despite the grim fate of so many, is unacceptable. To accept it, you have to be honest, and say that it’s because Democrats are conducting it. However, that would be called inconsistency and dishonesty. Human life depends on the kind of consistency which opposes Bush style wars regardless of what you think of me.

Right now we’re not even looking into the present, and we need a wake up call. So that’s why I illustrated this visually. This represents the cold sad truth; a truth not really up for discussion in this campaign all but almost over like the lives of too many beautiful souls.


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  1. priceman

    Hooray! Or not….:-(

    But yeah.  

  2. TMC

    This from Charles Pierce at Esquire:

    While it is great fun and all to mock Willard Romney, the one war in which we are engaged formally has started to go very badly, and it’s more than past time to admit that we’ve done all we can in Afghanistan and bring every American soldier in the theater home. Today.

    In a sensible world, this would be a major campaign issue. The president has risked an awful lot of his prestige on what essentially was a “surge” strategy in Afghanistan, and that seems now seriously to be coming apart. His opponent could make an issue of this, if he had not surrounded himself on the foreign-policy front with every unemployed dingbat who was sitting around playing Risk in the neocon hiring hall. I suppose Romney could say the current outbreak of violence is due to the president’s having set a date for a (now largely speculative) U.S. withdrawal, but that’s a hard case to make while your crack foreign-affairs staff is drooling from every molar for an another war, this one with Iran. Let’s stay in Afghanistan and blow Tehran to rubble! That’ll work.

    In any case, and domestic politics far to the side, there doesn’t seem to be a point to any of it anymore. Before even the latest insurgent attack based on the anti-Islam video killed 14 this morning, Taliban forces attacked a heavily defended U.S. base and got close enough to film video of how close they came to overrunning the place. NATO sent in an airstrike and managed to kill some women and children who were gathering firewood. We are supposed to be training the Afghan police and military, and then Americans or British soldiers go out on patrol with the people they’re supposed to be training, and those people kill them. There’s even a name for it now – blue-on-green killing, and there have been 51 of them this year alone. Unsurprisingly, this results in the cancellation of the joint patrols, and the entire raison d’etre for our being there at all evaporates on the spot. And said cancellation leads to this ominous quote from an American military source:

    “We’re to the point now where we can’t trust these people,” a senior military official said.

    However justified you may be in saying this, and the American military is pretty damned well justified, given the events of the past few months, once you have senior military men talking about your putative allies as “these people” whom you “can’t trust,” that’s pretty much the ballgame right there. If we are not very careful, that quote can be the first step down a very dark road that can lead, at best, to a de facto occupation for as long as we are there, or, at worst, to My Lai.

    You can also argue that we’re also there to “stabilize the region,” but that assumes a) that the region is ever stable or, b) that it necessarily wants to be or even knows what “stable” means. Yeah, good luck with that.

    Afghanistan has never been stable, or will be stable, because the inhabitants of the region do not recognize the fantasy country that has been imposed on them by the West. Former Rep. Alan Grayson explained Afghanistan and why the best policy would be to just leave it alone.

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