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Freedom Rider: Pissing on Afghanistan

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    by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

    U.S. troops commit ceaseless atrocities against the peoples they have been sent to subdue and occupy. The victims include women, children, the elderly, the armed, the unarmed, those that run away from the Americans and those who reach out to the foreign soldiers. All categories of the occupied are killable. War and occupation is the root crime, from which all the atrocities flow. “Unless the American people declare that they will no longer accept a government that has troops stationed in most of the world’s nations, wars and terror will be the norm.”

     

    Freedom Rider: Pissing on Afghanistan

    by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

    The question is why American forces are in so many places killing so many people and how the death toll can be brought to an end.”

    The recently revealed video of American marines urinating on dead Afghans identified as Taliban fighters has sparked much debate, but unfortunately little of it has any value. The usual suspects make the expected comments. Liberals wring their hands and declare that they are shocked, shocked to see such terrible behavior committed by their troops. The right wing shrug their shoulders and either dismiss the behavior’s importance altogether or express outright support.

    The Obama administration tries to have it both ways by simultaneously expressing outrage and promising punishment of the offenders but also declaring that the continued occupation of Afghanistan is a necessity. It is meaningless for the secretaries of State and Defense to express outrage and promise to punish the offenders when they are in charge of the inherently murderous occupation.

    The desecration of enemy bodies is a clear and unambiguous violation not only of the Geneva Conventions but of the moral principles most Americans claim to believe. It is also not at all shocking and not the first example of terror inflicted upon Afghanistan.

    Early in 2011 a marine “kill team,” complete with photos of human trophies, became known to the public. The team killed civilians in premeditated attacks, luring people to check points and then throwing grenades at them. The photos created momentary outrage but the inertia of a political and social system dedicated to committing atrocities meant that any vocal opposition inevitably subsided.

    It is meaningless for the secretaries of State and Defense to express outrage and promise to punish the offenders when they are in charge of the inherently murderous occupation.”

    The short-lived kill team story was not the only example of American murder. The Geneva Conventions make it clear that prisoners of war should treated humanely. When the United States slaughtered captured prisoners or suffocated them in shipping containers the stories went unreported by the corporate media. The Geneva Conventions also ban collective punishment against civilian populations, but the murders of civilians have been constant.

    Afghanistan has been pissed on by the United States ever since the 2001 invasion. America has gotten its revenge for the September 11, 2001 attacks, by killing more Afghans than bin Laden killed Americans. Thousands of civilians have been killed by bullets, bombings, and drone strikes since the so-called war on terror began. Acknowledgement of this basic wrongdoing committed against the Afghan people is missing from liberal outrage about the video.

    Instead of debating the merits of the actions of the soldiers, the propriety of the release of the video, or what our reactions should be, a debate about the nature of American interventions should be on the agenda instead. Atrocities and desecrations of various kinds are all par for the course of warfare.

    Most liberals are angry with the marines in the video because they feel embarrassment about boorish behavior.”

    The United States loves to excoriate other nations, claiming that they commit acts of “state sponsored terrorism.” The term is meaningless, being used only to describe states that our government describe as enemies. Countries with money, arms, and soldiers are never smeared with the “t” word. But the Afghan people who were maimed while attending weddings or farming in their fields surely would have no problem calling American presidents terrorists.

    Most liberals are angry with the marines in the video because they feel embarrassment about boorish behavior. They have no real opposition to killing provided that it is carried out by someone they like. They believe their country is entitled to conquer and to kill as long as the rationale is delivered by a well spoken Democrat, in this case Barack Obama.

    The fact of the matter is that there aren’t any well behaved marines, sailors, airmen or soldiers when they are attacking other countries. They are trained to kill, sometimes up close and personal, sometimes by sending drones to do the work for them. They may follow the Geneva Conventions, and they may not. The question is why American forces are in so many places killing so many people and how the death toll can be brought to an end.

    They believe their country is entitled to conquer and to kill as long as the rationale is delivered by a well spoken Democrat, in this case Barack Obama.”

    Those are more difficult questions than tea party chatter about one video showing disrespect to the dead. Unless the American people declare that they will no longer accept a government that has troops stationed in most of the world’s nations, wars and terror will be the norm. War has been a constant state for this country since 2001, and two presidents have declared that this war will never end.

    Americans have become more and more accustomed to murder and debate many issues, but not the rightness of something that is terribly wrong. The video reveals what we should already know to be true. America is peeing on the rest of the world, and like the soldiers in the video too many people are indifferent. That is the crime not only of the marines but of the millions of people they represent.

    Margaret Kimberley's Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR, and is widely reprinted elsewhere. She maintains a frequently updated blog as well as at http://freedomrider.blogspot.com. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgandaReport.com.

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    US Marines Pissing on Afghan Corpses Ain't the Real War Crime

    Note this January 15, 2012 article @Common Dreams entitled 'The Marines Urination Video Doesn't Show the Real War Crime' - 'The urination video does not as shocking as The Public's Tolerance of Immoral Wars that turn US Soldiers into Criminals' by Ross Caputi: [ www.commondreams.org/view/2012/01/15-2 ]. 

    This is my comment to the article:  AS distasteful as the images of those US soldiers PISSING on the corpses of their 'kills' are..., The author is correct- FAR Worse were those images of the Wikileaked 'Collateral Murder' where US soldiers were laughing & gloating [just like Billary laughed & gloated over Khadaffi's murder] as they were machine gunning & rocketing Iraqis [including journalists] who didn't even seem to know they were being targeted -&- then opened fire on an Iraqi w his kids as he tried to rescue one of the fallen men & commented- 'They should have known better than to bring their kids to a fire-fight'... So embarassingly despicable were they that Bradley Manning got 'Gitmotized' for the leak. Or what about those despicable images from Abu Ghraib- which was also Gitmotized. Or what about as Ms Kimberely said the Afghan 'Scalp Hunter' Team or the incident when US soldiers murdered an entire Afghan family & then re-arranged the crime-scene to cover-up their crimes. Or those Black-Water Mercs' slaughtering w impunity of those 17 Iraqi civilians in Baghdag, etc, etc, etc... Thats why at Nuremberg the judgment was that launching [or even prepping to launch] an unprovoked aggressive war Is the Ultimate War Crime because it contains within itself the capacity for all other war-crimes- including potentially Genocide!

    I will make a bit of a quibble w Sis Kimberley on her conventional take on 9-11. Unless the Official 9-11 Conspiracy Theory of the PNAC New Pearl Harbor Event is challenged [IE: That- 19 Fanatically Devout {yet hard-drinking / hard partying} Muslim extremists armed w mere box-cutters, none of whom had ever flow a jet plane before & were documented as barely being able to fly small single engine propeller planes- many / most of whom should not have been able to get in &/or stay in the US & half of whom most likely should not have even been allowed on those planes that day; out-witted & out-flew the US' ENTIRE $TRILLION military-intel-security network while under the command of a Muslim Phantom Menace {whose legend has recently been 'officially' disposed of} as  he was hiding in an Afghan cave a half a World away while  plugged into a dialysis machine...] - Theyre will always be- not just chicken-hawk NeoCON Repugs & Neo-Liberal phony 'R2P' Dim 'Cruise-Missile Liberals' - but even so-called anti-war 'progressives' who will think that US' invasion of Afghanistan & its subsequent 10yr [& counting] occupation of was in some way justifiable. And the Bushite NeoCONs played the 9-11 card to justify attacking Iraq & their phony War on Terror [Islam]. Now the O-Bomb-em Neo-Liberals are trying to play the 9-11 card to justify attacking Iran. This is why the 'Official' 9-11 'Conspiracy Theory' must be challenged!

    Can you say "the great satan"?

    "They have no real opposition to killing provided that it is carried out by someone they like" 

    I never liked the idea of Facebook, but then a friend convinced me to join. Facebook is brilliant becasueit shows how boring and insipid many of your friends actually are.Altough many of them could always congratualate tehmselves by posting an anti- republican video from comedy central, none of them had my back on the rape of Libya, and Obamas other atrocities. I cancelled my account. They let Obama butcher an african nation and didnt say word one about it.BAR is the heir to the movement I was borninto in 1966. BAR is almost all thats left.Thank you.

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