Tag Archive | "war crimes"

US exempts mercenaries from war crimes prosecution in UN measure

African mercenaries hired by the Gaddafi regime to kill Libyan protesters would be immune from prosecution for war crimes due to a clause in this weekend’s UN resolution that was demanded by the United States.

This was done to protect mercenaries hired by the US in other conflicts from prosecution. So much for justice, so much for any moral high ground the US might have gotten in Libya. Because it’s apparently a-ok with the Obama Administration if mercenaries hired by Qadaffi murder peaceful protesters because that protects similar thugs hired by the US in other countries.

This just makes me so goldarned proud to be an American. How about you?

Via Jonathan Turley

Posted in News

War Crimes in Afghanistan? Time To Investigate

I am the Afghanistan Blogging Fellow for Brave New Foundation. You can read my work on Firedoglake or at Rethink Afghanistan. The views expressed here are my own.

A few weeks ago, Rep. Darrell Issa, the new Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and the House GOP’s self proclaimed “chief watchdog,” released his agenda for upcoming investigations in the new congress. Some of the issues he intends to focus on are dubious and partisan, but others slated for investigation are very serious.

One of these serious issues is the war in Afghanistan. Politico reported at the time:

Rep. Darrell Issa is aiming to launch investigations on everything from WikiLeaks to Fannie Mae to corruption in Afghanistan in the first few months of what promises to be a high-profile chairmanship of the top oversight committee in Congress. [...]

The sweeping and specific hearing agenda shows that Issa plans to cut a wide swath as chairman, latching onto hot-button issues that could make his committee the center of attention in the opening months of the 112th Congress. By grabbing such a wide portfolio — especially in national security matters — Issa is also laying down a marker of sorts, which could cement his panel as the go-to place for investigations.

Great, if there’s one thing we need, it’s a “go-to place for investigations” in congress, especially concerning national security.  And certainly most everyone agrees that “corruption in Afghanistan”, referring here to waste, fraud, and abuse by US military contractors, could benefit from much stronger oversight in congress.

But here’s the problem: the bloody occupation of Afghanistan has been dragging on for ten long years now, the long-term cost is estimated to be in the trillions. The catastrophes we’re facing are much, much worse than losing a million or two here or there in graft. Continue Reading

Posted in Anti-war

The fundamentals of radical, transnational counterinsurgency

I am the Afghanistan Blogging Fellow for The Seminal and Brave New Foundation. You can read my work on The Seminal or at Rethink Afghanistan. The views expressed below are my own.

There’s a lot of hate speech floating around out there. You’re used to it by now. The President is a black Muslim Nazi, LGBT destroy families, immigrants are disease-ridden criminals. It’s not just that these lies are offensive, though, is it? It’s that they hint at something darker, more wicked underneath. The argument isn’t that immigrants have diseases (they don’t), so let’s try to help them. It’s that they have diseases, so they’re filthy and must be hunted down and annihilated. The folks who spread this hate speech are not lying out of altruism or compassion, they’re lying as an expression of the dangerous, sociopathic capacities they possess. We know this from our foreign policy as well. It’s not just that the overt anti-semitism of terrorist videos will double you over with vomit, it’s the psycho undercurrent of suicide bombings that really keeps us awake at night.

I thought about this when I read Steve Hynd’s “COIN is like Soviet Communism?,” wherein he exposes counterinsurgency not as a strategy, but an ideology. He’s right, but it’s not just that counterinsurgency is a demented ideology, that it propagates vicious lies like obliterating a houseful of Afghan civilians is “protecting the population.” It’s that COIN is a symptom of an idea more primeval and dangerous: violence is the solution. The fundamental idea behind counterinsurgency is that war is the right tool for the job. It may look different and sound different, but it’s still war, still violently brutalizing a population, us and them, for isolated and selfish political ends. Continue Reading

Posted in Anti-war

Iraq: Wikileaks video of US military killing journalists

Boing Boing

Wikileaks claims to have obtained and decrypted video that shows US occupying forces in an Apache helicopter intentionally firing on a dozen civilians in Baghdad, including journalists working for the Reuters news organization

Update: As of 2PM PT, a Senior U.S. official is confirming authenticity of this video.

No single piece of video has made me more ashamed to be supporting this stupid, morally bankrupt, endless war with my tax dollars. No wonder my government (and others) wants Wikileaks shut down.

At one point US forces open fire on a van showing no hostile intent and with no weapons that was picking up survivors. This is a war crime. US forces were laughing about it.

Wikileaks has a special website for this, Collateral Murder. They deserve and need our complete support. No doubt our government will be doing whatever they can to destroy Wikileaks.

Posted in News


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