Americans shop while families from Afghanistan bury their dead children

November 25, 2011 | By | 3 Replies More

I’m not in a holiday mood at all. Weapons from my country keep killing adult and children civilians from Afghanistan and, based on America’s newspapers, almost no one from the United States gives a crap. In fact, we are repeatedly hearing politicians and wanna-be politicians blithely talk of starting a war with Iran.  Add to the Afghanistan carnage that at least 168 children have been killed by U.S. drones in the ongoing illegal war in Pakistan.

Now back to the dead civilians.  Quite often, my “leaders” claim that those who were killed were “insurgents,” though we must keep in mind that this term has a nefarious real-life meaning: anyone who is killed by an American weapon is a insurgent, and there is no American media present on the ground to dispute these sorts of government claims. Sometimes, we do admit that we have killed civilians, and the “solution” is to apologize to the mourning families, as though that means anything to the weeping families. As Glenn Greenwald points out, these American killings of children are not unusual and they thus are morally reprehensible. These killings by America keep occurring the midst of a ten year so-called war that is costing America $2 Billion per week. This is a grotesque amount of money to spend on an activity that has no feasible morally justifiable objective.

In the absence of any reasonably articulated objective, we are left with de facto objectives: We are indiscriminately killing children as part of our program to keep America’s defense factories humming and to give American politicians an excuse to claim that they are “defending the United States.”

You’ll find articles on Black Friday everywhere you look today.   If you are an American, you’ll find almost nothing about the blood that is on your hands because you are not working hard enough to voice your opposition to this so-called “war” in Afghanistan.  Your friends, family and politicians desperately need to hear more from you (and from me).


Category: Good and Evil, Spending priorities, War

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (3)

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  1. Fee Berry says:

    I think most people in the US and the UK feel powerless to change things. There was widespread public opposition to the invasion of Iraq and involvement in Afghanistan, and it made no difference.

    People want to turn away from the news even when it is reported, because it does increase their feeling of being completely powerless in a world out of control. Not many of us understand why we should be interfering in the affairs of other countries any more… on the other hand there has been considerable anti-Taliban propaganda here in the UK, and so the idea of leaving Afghanistan to civil war once more seems the more heartless of the stay-or-leave options.

    We need a model for dealing with communities in conflict, particularly where one side seems intent on reversing any advances on human rights. It’s complex, and finding an equitable,honourable and lasting solution once we have been involved is difficult.

    I would close down the arms factories tomorrow if it were in my power… turn them over to making sustainable housing and affordable equipment for clean water and power… unfortunately I am not in charge.

    Love this blog btw.

    • Erich Vieth says:

      Fee Berry – It is an emotionally wrenching conundrum whether to pull up and leave. In my own thought experiment, I try to imagine that the UK and US were not in Afghanistan, but that for the past 10 years Afghanistan has been occupied by another country–assume it was France, and that France was looking for a way out. Assume that in 2011 France asked the US & UK to take over. France wanted to leave, and to have us step in. In that situation, there would not be any issue of sunk costs, and there would not be 10 years of political rhetoric that we were fighting to protect ourselves. In that situation, I have no doubt that the U.S. and U.K. would quickly say, “No thanks, France.” It seems like a hopeless cause, and we don’t want any part of turning this into a 20 year occupation that lacks any defined military objectives.

      Thanks for the compliment . . .

  2. Erich Vieth says:

    Glenn Greenwald statement to Amy Goodman at Democracy Now:

    Well, this is what’s so amazing to me. If you look back at what the Congress did in the wake of 9/11 when it enacted the authorization to use military force, if you look at that authorization, it’s incredibly narrow, as it turns out. If you go and actually read it, it says the President is authorized to use military force against those who perpetrated the 9/11 attack and those countries who harbored those individuals. That’s it, that’s the only authorized use of military force. Well, here we are more than a decade later, and there was an article in The Washington Post from a week ago where U.S. officials anonymously are saying that, in essence, Al Qaeda, the group that perpetrated the 9/11 attack according to the government, is now dead. There’s only two leaders left they say in that entire region. It already rendered “effectively inoperable”. There is no more Al Qaeda left in Afghanistan or Pakistan according to the U.S. government. The group that perpetrated 9/11, according to it is no longer even existing. And yet, here we are engaged in extraordinarily broad military efforts, constantly escalating in numerous parts of the world. There’s six different countries in which the U.S. is actively using drones; in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Somalia, Libya and Yemen, against groups that didn’t even exist at the time that 9/11 was perpetrated. And constantly, what you find is we are killing all sorts of civilians. There was just a story, a horrible story from four days ago where a U.S. air-strike in Afghanistan slaughtered an entire family of children, six children between the ages of 4 and 12. What we’re doing in essence is not only going way beyond what we were supposed to be doing when the Congress authorized military force, but what we’re really doing is we’re constantly manufacturing the causes of our war. Everywhere we go, every time we kill Pakistani troops or kill children in Yemen or in Afghanistan, we’re generating more and more anti-American sentiment and violence, and therefore, guaranteeing we will always have more people to fight.

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