Sunday, January 16, 2011

US-NATO Killings of Civilians in Afghanistan

by Prof Marc W. Herold
Global Research, January 14, 2011
- 2011-01-13
The Obama administration’s effort to persist in carrying out a deadly war in Afghanistan outside the public’s eye has been succeeding. Three means are employed: tight control over news flowing out of Afghanistan; vastly greater reliance upon secretive night raids by U.S. Special Forces; and a stepped-up use of private contractors/mercenaries on the ground in Afghanistan. The latter effort is crucial in helping reduce reported U.S. military casualties in Afghanistan, the primary factor which affects domestic U.S. politics.

Every now and then, the mainstream media reports upon a particularly egregious incident which took place in Afghanistan. Nowhere can a reader get a sense of the overall level of pain inflicted upon average Afghan civilians by the actions of U.S. and NATO occupation forces. This brief essay paints a picture of ground reality in Afghanistan during the month of December 2010.  The United Nations’ UNAMA releases overall figures, but the data is simply presented in aggregate fashion and we are asked to believe. A skeptic cannot fact check the numbers. We are simply asked to believe these faith-based numbers. As I have noted many times, the UNAMA figures for civilians killed by U.S/NATO actions are at best around 70% of the actual numbers killed.  For example, for 2009, the UNAMA captured less than 60% of the civilians who perished.

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