Donald Trump’s dangerous warmongering

This video from the USA says about itself:

U.S. Drops Its Biggest Non-Nuclear Bomb on Afghans, Already Traumatized by Decades of War

14 April 2017

In Afghanistan on Thursday, the United States military dropped its most powerful non-nuclear bomb ever—the Massive Ordnance Air Blast, or MOAB, nicknamed “The Mother of All Bombs.” The 21,600-pound bomb reportedly unleashed an explosion equivalent to 11 tons of TNT with a mile-wide blast radius.

This comes as the United Nations recently published a report saying airstrikes from the Afghan government forces and the U.S.-led coalition killed nearly 600 civilians in 2016—almost twice as many than in 2015. The U.S. war in Afghanistan is the longest war in U.S. history, extending into its 16th year.

We are joined by Kathy Kelly, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, a campaign to end U.S. military and economic warfare. She just returned from Afghanistan earlier this month. We also speak with Wazhmah Osman, professor of media and communication at Temple University and member of the Afghan American Artists and Writers Association.

Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai, who was installed by the US after its 2001 invasion of the country, complained that Afghanistan shouldn’t be used as a munitions laboratory. He tweeted: “This is not the war on terror but the inhuman and most brutal misuse of our country as testing ground for new and dangerous weapons”: here.

By Zoe Streatfield in Britain:

US bombing sends world in a ‘dangerous direction’

Saturday 15th April 2017

CND general secretary Kate Hudson warned yesterday that the world is heading in a “very dangerous direction” following the US bombing of Afghanistan.

Ms Hudson told the Star that the incident was “another terrible example of Trump’s escalation of militarism and spiralling policy” following on from “the recent attack on Syria which killed many civilians and his nuclear war rhetoric against North Korea.”

She concluded: “We’re heading in a very dangerous direction and President Trump has to be stopped.”

The “mother of all bombs” used on Thursday is the largest non-nuclear weapon ever used in combat by the US military and was dropped in the Nanfarhar province very close to Pakistan.

The GBU-43B massive ordnance air blast (MOAB), which contains 11 tons of explosives, was used for the first time to destroy caves and ammunition caches held by fundamentalist group Isis.

Former US State Department spokesman Philip Crowley told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that the use of the weapon was an indication of how Mr Trump had given “greater leeway to the military in terms of what it can do” in Afghanistan and Syria.

Mr Crowley, a former US air force colonel, said the bomb was “like creating a minor earthquake in that particular area.”

He said it would have “a profound effect not just in the immediate area, but the concussion extends for a considerable distance,” adding that civilians would have been “impacted in terms of feeling the tremor” of the weapon.

Stop the War spokesman Chris Nineham condemned the “barbaric attack,” warning it “can only increase the already deep and wide hatred of the West amongst the Afghan population.”

He said it was “one more sign that US foreign policy under Trump is going to be aggressive, unpredictable and deeply irresponsible.”

On Thursday, the United States military dropped the biggest bomb since the nuclear destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II. Twenty-four hours later, this development—by any standard a major world event—was being treated by the American and European media as insignificant: here.

The ‘Mother of All Bombs’ Is Massive Overkill and Won’t Lead to Peace. More military intervention won’t win the war in Afghanistan. By Medea Benjamin: here.

A sarcastic comment from the USA on Trump’s attack on Syria: here.

Donald Trump’s wars update

This video from the USA says about itself:

Afghans Respond to Insult of U.S. Dropping Massive Bomb: “Would a Mother Do That to Any Children?”

14 April 2017

The “Mother of All Bombs” is the nickname for the bomb the U.S. dropped Thursday on Afghanistan, but our guests in Kabul say civilians there are asking if any mother would conduct such an attack.

Basir Bita is a mentor with Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers, and Dr. Hakim is a medical doctor who has provided humanitarian relief in Afghanistan for over a decade. He works with Afghan Peace Volunteers, an inter-ethnic group of young Afghans dedicated to building nonviolent alternatives to war. We are also joined by Kathy Kelly of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, who is just back from Afghanistan, and Wazhmah Osman, professor of media and communication at Temple University and member of the Afghan American Artists and Writers Association.

By Bill Van Auken and David North in the USA:

14 April 2017

The US military’s dropping of the largest non-nuclear weapon in its arsenal on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border Thursday is a crime against humanity. Even as the US government and the mass media were engaged in a lying propaganda campaign denouncing Syria and Russia for the use of poison gas, the American military was positioning the monstrous weapon—the Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB)—for use in Afghanistan. …

The weapon, officially known as the GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast, designated by the Pentagon as MOAB, or “mother of all bombs,” detonates nearly 20,000 pounds of explosives in mid-air, igniting the atmosphere and creating a massive concussion that obliterates everything within a radius of 1,000 yards. Its shock waves are capable of killing people within a radius of up to 1.7 miles. The impact of the explosion is the equivalent of a nuclear weapon for those caught in the target zone.

Designed for use in the “shock and awe” campaign unleashed with the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, it was never utilized in combat over the course of 14 years. Even as the Pentagon carried out a war and occupation that claimed some one million Iraqi lives, the weapon was seen as too destructive to serve US strategic purposes.

NBC News in the United States led its evening news on April 13 with an “exclusive” report that the Trump administration is prepared to carry out a “preemptive strike with conventional weapons” if it believes North Korea is about to conduct another nuclear weapons test: here.

Australia: Amid a media barrage to try to drum up public support for US-led military attacks on Syria and North Korea, the corporate media and the Turnbull government have launched an extraordinary vilification campaign against academics seeking to expose the lies behind last week’s US cruise missile strike on Syria: here.

British government deports gay Afghan refugees to their deaths

This October 2016 video is called Desperate journeys: Afghan asylum seekers in EU could face deportation.

From ANI news agency in India:

Gay Afghans can be deported to their country, only if they pretend to be straight

26th February 2017 04:19 PM

LONDON: Under new British Government guidelines for handling asylum applications, gay Afghans can be deported to their country, but they will have to pretend that they are straight, as homosexuality is illegal in Afghanistan.

The Home Office’s own Afghanistan unit, however, has criticised the guidance, whereas human rights groups have denounced the same, considering it as a violation of international law, as stated in the Guardian.

The document, dated last month, clearly mentions the number of risks the LGBT Afghans face from their families, Afghan laws, and from Taliban insurgents, as homosexuality is considered a taboo in the country.

In the Guardian, from a reaction to the new send-them-back policy:

“We are deeply concerned at the suggestion that the prevalence, especially in the Pashtun community, of the practice of bacha bazi [pederasty] implies an acceptance of certain homosexual conduct,” warns the document, signed by the head of the unit.

“Its occurrence reflects Afghanistan’s inability to deal with child sexual abuse and paedophilia. It should not be associated with consensual homosexuality and attitudes towards this.”

ACTIVISTS prevented a charter flight full of asylum-seekers from leaving Stansted Airport late on Tuesday night in an “unprecedented victory” against mass deportations: here.

Afghanistan, endless war

This video says about itself:

22 February 2017

Tariq Ali reminds us of Afghanistan’s years of war, subsequent US and NATO occupation and the inter-ethnic division which these wars have caused. He introduces extracts from the documentary “From I through We to Community” which, with the support of AHRDO, sees young people addressing issues of ethnic discrimination head-on in order to find a way out of the ethnic tensions.

Relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan are fraught after a clash Friday over their disputed border killed at least twelve people and possibly many more, while forcing up to ten thousand villagers to flee for their lives: here.

United States airstrike kills Afghan women, children

This video says about itself:

13 February 2017

The United Nations has concluded that US-led forces are responsible for last week’s airstrikes in Afghanistan that resulted in 18 civilian deaths-nearly all women and children.

The world body voiced its grave concern over the mounting civilian deaths in Helmand province. The airstrikes took place on Thursday and Friday targeting Sangin district. This is while Afghan officials put the number of fatalities at 22. Washington has confirmed its warplanes have conducted around 30 airstrikes in Helmand province in the past week. The UN says civilian casualties from American airstrikes in Afghanistan increased dramatically last year.

From Reuters news agency:

U.S. Airstrikes In Afghanistan Kill At Least 18 Civilians: UN Report

The U.S. military says it is investigating the allegations.

KABUL, Feb 12 – At least 18 civilians were killed last week in air strikes by international forces in Afghanistan’s Helmand province, an initial United Nations inquiry has concluded.

American military officials say their aircraft have conducted around 30 air strikes in Helmand in the past week. …

American aircraft and special forces have also provided combat support, with at least one U.S. soldier wounded in recent fighting.

On Thursday and Friday air strikes in Helmand’s Sangin district killed as many as 18 civilians, mostly women and children, according to a U.N. statement released on Sunday.

The U.N. said the strikes had been conducted by “international military forces,” but only U.S. aircraft have been involved in recent coalition strikes, according to military officials.

Family members of victims at the regional hospital in Helmand’s capital, Lashkar Gah, demanded explanations.

“How could women and children be Taliban?” Majnoon, a resident of Sangin, who said 11 people were killed in his brother’s house in a strike on Thursday, told Reuters. …

Civilian casualties from both American and Afghan air strikes increased dramatically last year, according to the U.N.’s most recent report on threats to civilians.

British government deporting refugee to Afghan war

This video says about itself:

3 November 2016

At least 30 civilians have been killed in a NATO air strike in Afghanistan‘s volatile northern province of Kunduz.

Women and children are among those killed in the operation – which was called in to protect US and Afghan Special Forces battling the Taliban.

At least two US soldiers have died and four others were injured in the fighting.

Al Jazeera’s Richard Martin reports.

Warning: you may find some of the images in report disturbing.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Bid to stop deportation of Afghan national fails

Friday 27th january 2017

A BID to stop the deportation of an Afghan national from the Welsh city he has called home for a decade appeared to have failed last night.

Bashir Naderi, 20, has lived in Cardiff since he was 10, after his mother paid traffickers to bring him to Britain.

The case against his deportation became a cause celebre with senior politicians and high-profile individuals, including local MP Jo Stevens and singer turned DJ Cerys Matthews who gave Mr Naderi their backing.

His deportation was temporarily halted by a judge at the 11th hour in October and opposition was further bolstered by a 14,000-signature petition handed to the Home Office in January.

Mr Naderi’s partner Nicole Cooper said they were “devastated” his leave to remain has been refused.

She said the couple’s solicitor delivered the news on Wednesday but that they were still waiting to see the Home Office documents.

Mr Naderi fled Afghanistan after his father was killed by the Taliban.

Some 393 refugees & migrants locked up in the UK tried to take their lives in 2015: here.

German demonstration against deportation to Afghan war

This video from Germany says about itself:

Activists March Against Deportation of Afghan Refugees

24 January 2017

Activists staged a demonstration at Frankfurt airport on Monday to protest the recent deportation agreement between Germany and Afghanistan.

In a joint operation carried out by federal and state authorities, 26 Afghan refugees were deported on 23 January with officials putting them on a plane in Rhein-Main airport in Frankfurt, Germany and flying them to Kabul. This was the second mass deportation of this kind, following the deportation of 34 Afghan refugees on 14 December: here.

The brutal deportation policy of the central and state governments in Germany is driving more and more refugees to commit suicide: here.