This video list from the USA is called Rethink Afghanistan.
However, what is that deadline really worth?
By Bill Van Auken in the USA:
US to spend $1.3 billion on Afghanistan bases
24 August 2010
The Pentagon is embarking on a major base construction effort in Afghanistan even as Obama administration and military officials are making it clear that the US “surge” will last well past the July 11 deadline for beginning a drawdown of US troops.
The Washington Post reported Monday that the US Congress is preparing to pass legislation providing “$1.3 billion in additional fiscal 2011 funds for multiyear construction of military facilities in Afghanistan”. These funds would cover, in part, $100 million expansions for each of three major US air bases in different parts of the country.
These projects, the Post stated, are indicative of plans “to support increased US military operations well into the future.”
A notice seeking contractor bids placed on a US government web site last week maps out plans for the expansion of one of these US bases in Shindand, an airfield in western Afghanistan that had been used by the Soviet Army during its occupation of Afghanistan more than two decades ago.
Wikipedia used to write about Shindand:
Once the largest Afghan Air Force base, it is now used by the ISAF [NATO] for humanitarian and medical flights.
That really sounds a bit too good to be true. UPDATE March 2015: that ‘humanitarian and medical’ propaganda sentence has by now been deleted from that Wikipedia entry.
Bill Van Auken continues:
The project is to include new runways, hangars, barracks, storage areas, a “weapons arming area” and other facilities. They are being built to accommodate the Special Operations troops used by Washington to carry out “targeted killings,” i.e., assassinations, which have become a key component of the US war. They will also house a unit operating pilotless drone aircraft for purposes of “Intelligence, Surveillance & Reconnaissance” as well as missile attacks.
The request for bids states that the contract will not be issued until January of next year and that the job itself will not be completed until at least a full year after that, i.e., January 2012, six months after the deadline set by President Barack Obama for the beginning of the drawdown of US troops from Afghanistan.
The House of Representatives and the Senate Appropriations Committee have already approved the $1.3 billion base construction package, which is awaiting only a vote by the full Senate.
The principle of civilian control forms the foundation of the American system of civil-military relations, offering assurance that the nation’s very powerful armed forces and its very influential officer corps pose no danger to our democracy. That’s the theory at least, the one that gets printed in civics books and peddled to the plain folk out in Peoria. Reality turns out to be considerably more complicated. In practice, civilian control – expectations that the brass, having rendered advice, will then loyally execute whatever decision the commander-in-chief makes – is at best a useful fiction: here.
Total foreign military deaths in Afghanistan have passed 2,000 since the war began in late 2001, unofficial tallies showed on Sunday, in the approach to U.S. and Afghan elections and a U.S. strategy review: here.
President Barack Obama will keep 5,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan when he leaves office in 2017, according to senior administration officials, casting aside his promise to end the war on his watch and instead ensuring he hands the conflict off to his successor: here.