Index Research will focus on a country or an issue which is of particular interest to me. Articles have appeared on and others.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Index on Afghanistan: January 2007

Photo: Jason Fetterhoff

Surge (Oxford English Dictionary): “Impetuous onset or agitated movement (1520).”

Troop numbers in Afghanistan are a problem. The Bush administration’s decision to siphon US troops and funds from Afghanistan to Iraq has created a ‘dire straits’ situation resulting in a further US ‘surge’ adjustment. US bullying is in full flow. Is there a management plan for Afghanistan? Or will matters develop, like Iraq, from crisis to crisis? Meanwhile, a poll suggests 52% of Americans are now opposed to the war in Afghanistan.

Perhaps the Nato charter reflects best the attitude of the world: An attack on one is an attack on all. The civilized world is rallying to America's side. President Bush.

Is it?

Europe resists US pressure to boost presence in Afghanistan


1. Oil
2. Strategic Imperatives (General, Afghanistan, Pakistan, UK, US)
3. Military Contracts
4. Investment and Aid
5. NATO, General
6. NATO: Participating Countries (Canada, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, UK)
7. Opium
8. Human Rights: War Crimes: Report, Articles, Rendition, Guantanamo, Unitary Executive, Polichaki Prison, Dilawar
9. Some of the Dead in Afghanistan: ‘regrets’ are not enough.


1. Oil and Gas in Afghanistan.

Shock and oil: Iraq's billions & the White House connection
14.01.07. S. Foley, Independent. Investigation into Bearing Point. “According to the Center for Responsive Politics, BearingPoint employees gave $117,000 (£60,000) to the 2000 and 2004 Bush election campaigns, more than any other Iraq contractor. Other recipients include three prominent Congressmen on the House of Representatives' defence sub-committee, which oversees defence department contracts. One of the biggest single contributors to BearingPoint's in-house political fund was James Horner, who heads the company's emerging markets business which is working in Iraq and Afghanistan. He donated $5,000 in August 2005. … Despite annual revenues of $.4bn, the company made a loss of $722m in 2005.” See Index on Afghanistan, October 2006.

Professor says America seeks Afghanistan Oil Deal
20.01.07. The Canadian. The mounting U.S. military presence in Afghanistan and other Central Asian countries may enable Chevron, Exxon-Mobil, UNOCAL, and other giant corporations to lay claim to "the number-one prize in world oil." But the extension of U.S. military power and economic domination into this region comes with very grave risks. See also Exxon Mobil’s War on Science by Robert Kennedy.

The pipeline may not be a pipe-dream
30.01.07. Rasul Bakhsh Rais, Daily Times. If cooperation in transporting the energy resources of Central Asia and the Gulf region is held hostage to conflict between India and Pakistan or instability in Afghanistan, it will adversely affect the future economic growth and individual well-being of Central, South West and South Asia. … Talks on building the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline began in 1994, more than twelve years back. Progress on this multi-billion-dollar project has been held hostage to India-Pakistan tensions. … Pakistan has been equally interested in the Turkmenistan pipeline through Afghanistan; there is a possibility that India might also join the project. Since the pulling out of the Unocal in December 1998, Turkmenistan and Pakistan have remained engaged in reviving the pipeline project, but they continue to face tremendous difficulties in raising the capital and attracting partners. … The situation in Afghanistan has qualitatively changed with the tremendous interest of the world powers in its reconstruction as a nation, country and state. Some of them would support the efforts that Afghanistan, Turkmenistan and Pakistan are making in pulling the regional pipeline project out of cold storage.

2. Strategic Imperatives: Reports & Documents; General, Afghanistan, Pakistan, UK, US


An all-consuming 'war on terror'
31.12.06. Ian S. Lustick, Baltimore Sun. “How did the war on terror take on a life of its own and trap the entire political class, and most Americans, into public beliefs about the need to fight a global war on terror as our first priority, even when there's little or no evidence of an enemy present in the United States? What accounts for $650 billion worth of expenditures, along with baseless cycles of "sleeper cell" hysteria and McCarthyist policies of surveillance and "pre-emptive prosecution" not seen in this country since the early 1950s?”

Somalia: Afghanistan remixed
13.01.07. Pepe Escobar, Asia Times. The "war on terror" is back with a bang. First Afghanistan, then Iraq and now Somalia. And Iran could well be the next Islamic nation to be bombarded by the US - as President George W Bush telegraphed in his "surge" speech on Wednesday.


Afghan Refugees: Current Status and Future Prospects
January 26, 2007


Mullah Omar issues Eid message
31.12.06. Al jazeera.

Taliban commander vows bloody 2007 in Afghanistan
02.01.07. Reuters

Afghan MPs predict 'very big war'
05.01.07. C. Sands, ICH.

Starving Afghans sell girls of eight as brides
07.01.07. Observer. Villagers whose crops have failed after a second devastating drought are giving their young daughters in marriage to raise money for food

Afghan war needs troops
07.01.07. D. Wood, Balt. Sun. Taliban expected to push against thin U.S., NATO forces

Fugitive Mullah Omar leaves only a trail of devotees
20.01.07. D. Walsh, Guardian. The capture of the Taliban spokesman Muhammad Hanif produced a sensational confession: that Omar was hiding in south-west Pakistan. … Quetta, a mountain-ringed city with a rich history of spycraft and intrigue, holds many secrets. All are jealously guarded. … The Quetta security services might have more luck catching Omar if they paid as much attention to the Taliban as they do to foreign reporters. … On Thursday and yesterday the Guardian was shadowed by between one and three men from the police's Special Branch unit and the ISI. (This story is not Graham Greene - but could be …)

Taliban militants to open own schools in southern Afghanistan, spokesman says
21.01.07. Santa Barbara News Press.

Harsh Winter Has Afghans Struggling For Survival
22.01.07. Washington Post. 5 Years After Invasion, Many in Kabul Lack Central Heat, Water, Power

Fugitive warlord claims U.S. facing Soviet-style defeat in Afghanistan
23.01.07. IHT. In a recording obtained by The Associated Press in Pakistan, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar also accused Washington of fomenting conflict among Afghan ethnic groups on a scale comparable with the strife in Iraq.

Karzai offers Taliban talks to end bloodshed
30.01.07. The Int. Times. Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Monday offered peace talks with a resurgent Taliban after the bloodiest year since the hardline Islamists were ousted in 2001 and amid warnings of a violent spring offensive.
More than 4,000 people, including about 170 foreign soldiers, died in fighting last year, a year that saw a dramatic jump in suicide bombings as the Taliban and other militants copy tactics from insurgents in Iraq.


Pakistan begins fencing on its border with Afghanistan
03.01.07. Hindustan Times.

Pakistan to complete border fencing with Afghanistan by July
11.01.07. Zee news.

Photo AP/Ishtiaq Mahsud

19.01.07. Photo AP/ Ishtiaq Mahsud

This story refers to another bombing in Pakistan on 22.01.07.
Coalition forces in Afghanistan bomb Pakistani territory
22.01.07. Indianmuslims.

Afghanistan, Pakistan and NATO to share intelligence
25.01.07. Monsters and Critics.

PM: Bin Laden not hiding in Pakistan
25.01.07.Reuters / CNN.

ISAF in Afghanistan using some Pak airbases for emergency
26.01.07. Zee News.

U.S. Seeks to Alter Pakistan-Terror Bill
26.01.07. S.. Graham, AP / San Francisco Gate. The Bush administration will press Congress to drop a provision in a new bill linking military assistance for Pakistan to its commitment to fighting terrorism, a U.S. official said Friday. (The “Imperial’ Warning)

Pakistani lawmakers demand details of US military presence
29.01.07. RxPG News. “The government has not been forthcoming.’


Special deals and raw recruits employed to halt the Taliban in embattled Helmand
04.01.07. D. Walsh, Guardian.

Blow for Britain as Helmand's 'cleanest' governor is sacked
09.01.07. Times on Line.

Blair defends military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan
12.01.07. 4rfv.

Shoot the messenger: PM blames media for anti-war mood
13.01.07. Sengupta / Brown, Independent. The Prime Minister rejected as "ludicrous" the notion that removing two dictatorships in Afghanistan and Iraq and replacing them with a UN-backed process to democracy had made Britain a greater target for international terrorism.

We need them: how do we pay?
14.01.07. S. Raimont, Sunday Telegraph. “The message to the Army recruits was blunt but clear: parachute training is cancelled. The RAF has run out of aircraft. For the troops who had joined the four-week military parachuting course at RAF Brize Norton, in Oxfordshire, just four days earlier, it was a morale-sapping blow. … There certainly appears to be a great deal of financial waste in the MoD. It was revealed last year, for instance, that the military spends more than £3 million a year on household staff in 37 "grace-and-favour" houses and apartments used by senior generals. In one house alone, the bill for a chef, butler, housekeepers and a gardener came to more than £192,000.”

Britain's war on two frontlines: In Afghanistan and Iraq, two missions, one deadly outcome
21.01.07. Raymond Whitaker, Independent.
The offensive reported on the previous pages highlights the very different dangers faced by UK troops in the killing fields of Helmand and the streets of Basra. Although efforts continue to root out rogue elements in the Basra police, troops are largely staying within their bases and seeking to avoid casualties. A steady trickle of losses to small arms fire, mortars and roadside bombs continues, however, with another soldier killed on patrol last week.
The British military, in short, is on the front foot in Afghanistan and on the back foot in Iraq. But the number of troops stationed in and around Basra - around 7,100 - is still well above the total in Helmand, where some 4,000 troops are based out of a total force in Afghanistan of about 5,200. While the US prepares to send in extra forces to seize control of Baghdad, British military chiefs have long sought to "draw down" their Iraq contingent so that the Afghan mission can be beefed up. The delays in achieving this are beginning to impose increasing strains on forward planning. … The US, Britain, Canada and the Netherlands, the four nations bearing the brunt of the fighting in southern Afghanistan, have for months been seeking about 2,500 more front-line troops to form a "quick reaction force", ready to intervene when clashes with the Taliban flare up. With the fighting expected to intensify within weeks as winter eases its grip, the need for such a force has become urgent. Since other Nato members refuse to commit more troops or change the rules of engagement of their contingents in Afghanistan, however, London and Washington now appear to accept that they will have to supply their own reinforcements.

Root causes of terror must be addressed: PM
26.01.07. International news. He said the world has to understand the real issue behind terrorism. “It is not related to any religion, culture or areas. It is related to poverty, suffering, removing sense of deprivation and injustice in the world.” (Palestine/Israel, eg.?)

See NATO, Participating Countries, below.


photo Yahoo. Gen. Bantz Craddock and Pres. Karzai 29.01.07

for disturbing details on B. Craddock, see: here.

US will be defeated in Afghanistan: Former CIA hand
01.01.07. New Ind Press

Report: Militarization of U.S. Embassies Arouses Suspicion
11.01.07. SECRECY NEWS. This story is about a Senate staff report,

Pentagon Abandonning Its Limit on Total Active-Duty Time Required of Guard and Reserve
12.01.07. AP / ABC.

Sec. Gates lauds U.K. for military aid
14.01.07. R. Burns, Gates met with Prime Minister Tony Blair and later with Des Browne, the British defense secretary, to discuss President Bush's new approach in Iraq and Britain's plan to withdraw troops from southern Iraq. "Britain is our most important international partner in both Iraq and Afghanistan," Gates said. … they took no questions from reporters. … Gates said he would be traveling to Afghanistan "in a few days. … A senior official on Gates' flight to London said the defense secretary wanted to consult with Afghan officials and U.S. commanders there to see if they had adequate resources.

New Law Could Subject Civilians to Military Trial
15.01.07. Washington Post. Private contractors and other civilians serving with U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan could be subject for the first time to military courts-martial under a new federal provision that legal scholars say is almost certain to spark constitutional challenges.

How US is deferring war costs
16.01.07. R. Scherer, CS Monitor. As war spending on Iraq and Afghanistan nears the levels for Vietnam and Korea, concern is rising over the 'borrow now, pay later' approach.

Strikes on U.S. Afghan forces up fourfold
17.01.07. Washington Times.

Gates may OK troop boost for Afghanistan
17.01.07. Yahoo / ABC. Defense Secretary Robert Gates suggested on Wednesday that he is likely to urge President Bush to send more troops to Afghanistan to fight the resurgent Taliban.

As Raids on Afghan Border Increase, U.S. Military Seeks More Troops
17.01.07. D. Cloud, NY Times / uruknet.

Democrat Agenda Omissions
18.01.07. sjlendman. With an unwinnable war in Iraq only an end to US occupation will resolve, you'd think the leadership in both parties would raise and debate the other unwinnable one now raging out-of-control in Afghanistan, mostly below the radar. Instead the other US war of aggression against the Afghan people goes on with almost no discussion of it publicly or any hint the Democrat leadership will end that conflict along with the one in Iraq. It's also never mentioned that like Iraq, this is another resource war for control of the great energy reserves in Central Asia in the landlocked Caspian Basin. … The US-led war of aggression created a state of unaddressed desperation for the great majority of Afghans creating high unemployment, extreme poverty, one of the lowest levels of life expectancy in the world, the highest infant mortality rate in the world, one-fifth of all children dying before age five, little access to electricity, clean drinking water and sanitation, little available medical care or most other essentials of life, and an overall surreal situation throughout the country where in parts of Kabul an opulent elite have grown rich from rampant corruption and drug trafficking while most others struggle to survive and many don't.

Is it high treason or just a simple case of dereliction of duty?
23.01.07. Maher Osseiran, ICH blog. The Bush administration was the closest ever to Bin Laden and could have captured him on September 26, 2001, intelligence operatives were feet from him.

Rumsfeld’s transition raises problems
Washington Times. Former Defense Sec. Donald H. Rumsfeld has left the Pentagon but not the Defense Department. … He has seven Pentagon-paid staffers working for him. (he is) a nonpaid consultant, a ‘status he needs in order to review secret and top secret documents, the official said.’

U.S. brigade gets four more months in Afghanistan
24.01.07. CNN.

Pentagon says 3,200 soldiers face extended tour of duty in Afghanistan
25.01.07. AP / Shelbyville News.

Bush to pump another $8bn into Afghanistan
26.01.07. E. MacAskill, Guardian. The White House is to ask Congress next month for $8bn (£4.1bn) in new funds, which is more than half the $14.2bn Washington has spent on Afghanistan since the US-led invasion in 2001. ( For the benefit of Cheney / Halliburton / KRB?)

Washington Ups the Ante in Afghanistan
27.01.07. Jim Lobem, anti-war. for escalating US military intervention in Iraq, US President George W. Bush is calling for a sharp increase in Washington's economic and military commitment to Afghanistan.

US Majority Opposes Afghan War
27.01.07. Thomas Barton, GI Special. According to a poll by Opinion Research Corporation released by CNN, 52 per cent of respondents oppose the U.S. conflict in Afghanistan, up four points since September.

America foments trouble in Afghanistan
28.01.07. Abid Mustafa, Greater Kashmir. comments on US policy of fanning the fire in Afghanistan by pitting groups against each other. “Lately, relations between Kabul and Islamabad have taken a dramatic turn for the worse. Hamid Karzai has accused Pakistan of spurring the Taliban to carry out attacks against his fledgling government and the NATO troops that defend it. He is not alone in holding Pakistan responsible for the re-emergence of the Taliban. NATO commanders, the New York Times and the International Crisis Group (ISG) have all pointed the finger at Pakistan for fomenting the Pushtoon resistance that shows no sign of abating. … is America encouraging the emergence of Taliban as a way of extricating itself from Afghanistan? The answer lies in the Afghan coalition America cobbled together to ouster Taliban.

Pelosi: NATO partners must step up in Afghanistan
30.01.07. The Hill.

Inflation: The Hidden Cost of War
30.01.07. Rep. Ron Paul, anti-war. The Pentagon recently reported that it now spends roughly $8.4 billion per month waging the war in Iraq, while the additional cost of our engagement in Afghanistan brings the monthly total to a staggering $10 billion. Since 2001, Congress has spent more than $500 billion on specific appropriations for Iraq. This sum is not reflected in official budget and deficit figures.

The big Afghanistan push comes to shove
30.01.07. S. Tisdall, Guardian. Overshadowed by President George Bush's controversial, last-chance bid to salvage American honour in Iraq, the US is mounting a parallel military and reconstruction "surge" in Afghanistan ahead of an anticipated Taliban spring offensive. But Washington is also encountering some familiar Iraq-style obstacles: reluctant allies, meddlesome neighbours, a weak central government and the realisation that time is not on its side. … Whether this latest surge of US interest will decisively improve Afghanistan's longer-term prospects is an open question. Mr Karzai yesterday reiterated his offer of peace talks with the Taliban. But Ms Rice's tone is familiarly unyielding. Re-burying the mistakes made in Iraq, she is once again conjuring dramatic black-and-white choices: "This is a defining moment for Afghanistan, for Nato and for our wider democratic community ... We must stay, we must fight, and we must win."

US Lawmakers Paint Grim Picture of Iraq, Afghanistan
31.01.07. D. Robinson, VOA. Lawmakers again expressed concern that Iraq has siphoned troops and funds from Afghanistan, where U.S. and NATO troops have been fighting the Taleban, al-Qaida and other insurgents.

President Bush’s Speech on Iraq
11.01.07. AP. 21,500 more troops to Iraq. But, after speech, “the base commander (democratically) prohibited the 300 soldiers who had lunch with the president from talking with reporters.”

Commanders seek more forces in Afghanistan
08.01.07. President Bush is expected to announce this week the dispatch of thousands of additional troops to Iraq as a stopgap measure. Such an order, Pentagon officials say, would strain the Army and Marine Corps as they man both wars. A US Army battalion fighting in a critical area of eastern Afghanistan is due to be withdrawn within weeks to deploy to Iraq.

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin says we are ignoring Afghanistan
11.01.07. QJBD. Durbin says that's a place where reinforcements would do some good. He says the president of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, is a friend of America, but if the U.S. is to have success there, it will demand more attention.

Afghanistan a source of worry
13.01.07. Barnes, Spiegel, LA Times. Sen. Clinton says more troops needed to fight Taliban, not in Iraq.

Video. Bring Them Home. Pete Seeger.

U.S. House Speaker Pelosi meets with troops in Afghanistan
28.01.07. USA Today. Also met with Pres. Musharraf of Pakistan.

The neocons have learned nothing from five years of catastrophe
31,01,07. *** Francis Fukuyama, Guardian.

Nemesis on the Imperial Premises
31.01.07. Chalmers Johnson,Tomgram.


Secretary of Army.

See NATO, below.

3. Military Contracts

U.S. Arms Sales: Agreements with and Deliveries to Major Clients, 1998-2005
15.12.06. Congressional Research Service

General Dynamics gets Army contract
02.01.07. UPI, Washington Times.

The Revolving Door syndrome

Lockheed Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
01.07. R. Cummings, Playboy. ... " As The New York Times put it in a 1997 article, "at night Bruce Jackson is president of the U.S. Committee to Expand NATO, giving intimate dinners for senators and foreign officials. By day, he is director of strategic planning for Lockheed Martin Corporation, the world's biggest weapons maker. That's how D.C. works. Many of the people making decisions have been in and out of the same set of revolving doors connecting government, conservative think tanks, lobbying firms, law firms and the defense industry. So strong is the bond between lobbyists, defense contractors and the Pentagon that it is known in Washington as "the iron triangle." And this triangle inevitably gets what it wants. Why? Because in the revolving door system, a defense contractor executive can surface as an official in the Department of Defense, from which position he can give lucrative contracts to his former employer, and his prospects for an even better paying job in the private sector brighten. Former aides to members of congress become handsomely paid lobbyists for the companies they were able to help in their position on Capitol Hill. Such lobbyists can spread their corporate-funded largesse to the friendliest members and their aides on the Hill. And so on. These "blow-dried Republican lobbyists," as one Washington district court judge calls them, wield far more power than most of the elected officials in town. Forget dime-a-dozen congressmen." information about Stephen Hadley, Randy Scheunmann, Julie Finley, Rend Al Rahim Franke, and key Lockheed people. ...
When the United States gives military aid to its allies, the benefits accrue to Lockheed Martin, too. Israel, for example, spends much of the $1.8 billion a year it receives in military aid from the U.S. on planes and missile systems from Lockheed. ... Britain's involvement: Bush couldn't go into Iraq without a major ally and Lockheed knew it. To sweeten the pot for Blair, Lockheed dragged BAE Systems into the F-35 deal. ... To make things even better for Blair, Lockheed brought the British in on the new presidential helicopter deal,

Updated Arms Trade Case-Studies Show Post-Sept. 11 Increase in Military Assistance
03.01.07. Center for Defense Information. In the five years since the Sept. 11 attacks, the Bush administration has solidified a trend of supplying high technology weapons and millions of dollars in military assistance to allies in the “war on terror.” “We’ve found that in exchange for support of U.S. efforts to stamp out international terrorist networks or operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States is sending military assistance to countries with poor human rights records, lack of democracy, and even past support of terrorism, “ said Center for Defense Information Senior Analyst Rachel Stohl. “This is an alarming trend,”
see also: here.

Army Eyes Advanced Hypersonic Weapon
05.01.07. E. Grossman,, NewsStand. As the Defense Department is working final budget details for its fiscal year 2008 appropriations request to Congress, Army officials are eyeing $30 million for development and testing of the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon, according to defense and congressional officials.

AHW supporters hope it might win hearts and minds in the Pentagon and on Capitol Hill as a future "prompt global strike" weapon that could attack so-called "high value" targets anywhere around the globe within one hour of an order to attack.

If AHW's Army promoters succeed in landing such a big budget in FY-08 for the missile -- one that must compete against other priorities as the Pentagon struggles to replace equipment worn out in Iraq and Afghanistan -- it would exceed the funds a skeptical Congress offered in FY-07 for an initial and more modest prompt global strike capability.

Tomgram: Frida Berrigan, How the Pentagon Stole the Future
09.01.07. Tom Dispatch. “We are not winning the war on terrorism (and would not be even if we knew what victory looked like) or the war in Iraq. Our track record in Afghanistan, as well as in the allied "war" on drugs, is hardly better. Yet the Pentagon is hard at work, spending your money, planning and preparing for future conflicts of every imaginable sort. From wars in space to sci-fi battlescapes without soldiers, scenarios are being scripted and weaponry prepared, largely out of public view, which ensures not future victories, but limitless spending that Americans can ill-afford now or twenty years from now.

Who Rules America?
11.01.07. J. Petras, ICH. “In tackling the question of ‘ruling’ one needs to clarify a great deal of misunderstandings, particularly the confusion between those who make governmental decisions and the socio-economic institutional parameters which define the interests to be served.”

Riches keep the US in Iraq
17.01.07. Asia Times. Ismael Hossein-zadeh.In light of the fact that by now almost all of the factions of the ruling circles, including the White House and the neo-conservative warmongers, acknowledge the failure of the Iraq war, why, then, do they balk at the idea of pulling the troops out of that country?
Perhaps the shortest path to a relatively satisfactory answer would be to follow the money. Not everyone is losing in Iraq. Indeed, while the Bush administration's wars of choice have brought unnecessary death, destruction and disaster to millions, including many from the Unites States, they have also brought fortunes and prosperity to war profiteers. At the heart of the reluctance to withdraw from Iraq lies the profiteers' unwillingness to give up further fortunes and spoils of war.
Pentagon contractors constitute the overwhelming majority of these profiteers. They include not only giant manufacturing contractors such as Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Boeing, but also a complex maze of more than 100,000 service contractors and subcontractors such as private army or security corporations and "reconstruction" firms. [1] These contractors of both deconstruction and "reconstruction", whose profits come mainly from the US Treasury, have handsomely profited from the Bush administration's wars of choice.

Civilian contractors in Iraq placed under US military law
17.01.07. Indybay. The measure was proposed by Senator Lindsey Graham (Republican, South Carolina) as a means of placing legal restraints on the nearly 100,000 private security contractors who have until now operated with impunity in Iraq and Afghanistan. While the new law has provoked predictable opposition from private security firms, civil liberties lawyers say the new law is written so broadly that its impact could reach much further than the mercenaries contracted by the Pentagon.

The Living Reality of Military-Economic Fascism
20.01.07. By Robert Higgs, Mises. In countries such as the United States, whose economies are commonly, though inaccurately, described as "capitalist" or "free-market," war and preparation for war systematically corrupt both parties to the state-private transactions by which the government obtains the bulk of its military goods and services: Garden-variety Corruption of Officials; Legal Corruption of Officials; Absence of Proper Accounting Invites Theft; PAC Contributions Are Bribes; How Government Corrupts Business. Can Anything Be Done?; References.

Globecomm Systems Receives $13.1 Million Notice of Award from NATO for Additional Systems Supporting a GPS-Based Force Tracking System
24.01.07. Epicos.

Outsourcing Iraq war a grave threat to democracy
25.01.07. J. Scahill, We should say no to the wider use of mercenaries. … They were highly trained mercenaries deployed to Iraq by a secretive private military company based in North Carolina — Blackwater USA. … From Iraq and Afghanistan to the hurricane-ravaged streets of New Orleans to meetings with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger about responding to disasters in California, Blackwater envisions itself as the FedEx of defense and homeland security operations. Such power in the hands of one company, run by a neocrusader bankroller of the president, embodies the "military-industrial complex" President Eisenhower warned against in 1961. Further privatizing the country's war machine — or inventing new back doors for military expansion with fancy names like the Civilian Reserve Corps — would represent a devastating blow to the future of American democracy.

Gangsters for Capitalism
27.01.07. *** Clinton L. Cox, ICHblog. 01/27/07 -- -- “Although benign U.S. intentions are an article of faith among many Americans, theft, murder and oppression have always been central to U.S. policies and practices in the non-white world. George Bush’s crusade for ‘democracy’ is yet another chapter in the shameful saga. The U.S. has routinely destroyed democracy throughout the globe while its leaders spout words about spreading democracy.”

U.S. Army Probes War Contractor Fraud
27.01.07. AP/Fox News. Army investigators have opened up to 50 criminal probes involving battlefield contractors in the war in Iraq and the U.S. fight against terrorism, The Associated Press has learned. "All of these involve operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and Kuwait," Chris Grey, a spokesman for the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command, confirmed Saturday to the AP. "CID agents will pursue leads and the truth wherever it may take us," Grey said. "We take this very seriously."

Radar Love: Robbing the Cradle to Pay War Profiteers
27.01.07. *** Chris Floyd, uruknet. Another day, yet another scandal involving the saintly Tony Blair and highly connected Anglo-American arms peddlers. … Blair's speech rang with distinct echoes of the neo-con "national greatness" rhetoric that glories in constant warfare in distant lands - and has been codified as the official "national security doctrine" of the United States government by Bush. Speaking on board the naval assault ship Albion, Blair was brutally honest in his call for Britain to remain a "war-fighting" nation, unlike those other sissy countries, such as Germany and France, who "have, effectively, except in the most exceptional circumstances, retreated to peacekeeping alone." … Ah, but why must Britain's youth be sent to kill and die in exotic, far-flung climes? Because "the frontiers of our security no longer stop at the Channel," says BAE bagman Blair. "What happens in the Middle East affects us. What happens in Pakistan, or Indonesia, or in the attenuated struggles for territory and supremacy in Africa, for example, in Sudan or Somalia - the new frontiers for our security are global." Of course, many people around the world - in the Middle East, Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan, East Asia and Africa - will doubtless wonder how this enlightened stance differs from the policies pursued by Blair's predecessors when they came calling in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. … A final echo of Bushist militarism came when Blair - calling for a foreign policy that "keeps our American alliance strong and is prepared to project hard as well as soft power" - finally got down to brass tacks: "The covenant between armed forces, government and people has to be renewed." This does not mean, as you might think, that the people should have a say as to when and where their children are to be sent to "the lands of other nations far from home, with no immediate threat to our territory." No, the new covenant means "increased expenditure on equipment, personnel and the conditions of our armed forces." It means, in other words, bigger bucks for BAE and the many American war firms, such as Halliburton, the Carlyle Group and others, who have been hard-wired into Britain's military-industrial complex.

This is the mind-set - and the depraved morality - of the leaders of the Anglo-American democracies in the 21st century: More war, more money for war, more money for the merchants of war, no matter who must suffer for it, no matter how badly it skews and perverts national policies.”

4. Investment and Aid in Afghanistan

NATO Correct to Recognize Afghans Killed, Now Must Provide Families With Aid
04.01.07. Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict, Common Dreams.

Aid failures are killing UK soldiers in Afghanistan, think tank claims
20.01.07. GERRI PEEV, Scotsman. “BRITISH troops are dying in Afghanistan because the government's aid department is failing to get food to the poor in the southern provinces, an international security and development think tank claims. Angry Afghans are turning to the Taleban for support, said the Senlis Council, a French think tank which has staff in the volatile Helmand province.

"The failure of USAID, the Canadian International Development Agency and DfID to provide effective development programmes has substantially contributed to the hostile environment in which the troops are fighting," Ms MacDonald said. "These agencies are therefore responsible for the significant number of military deaths." Up to 70 per cent of the population in the south was facing food shortages.

Can More Aid Save Afghanistan?
26.01.07. Time. ‘The Bush Administration's efforts this week to get its NATO allies to contribute more troops and money to Afghanistan — by pledging more of both from the U.S. — are a reminder of mounting problems in Washington's ?other? war. Indeed, even if, as expected, the Administration's request for $10.6 billon more to beef up the Afghan security forces and reconstruction efforts sails through Congress, the additional funds are unlikely to arrive in time to help the Afghan security forces hold their own against the Taliban's spring offensive.’

Individualism and the dog
27.01.07. I Sayeed, uruknet. After the war in Afghanistan, the citizens of the United States, out of the goodness of their hearts, donated 50 precious cents for every Afghan man, woman and child; each animal in the zoo received $10,000. Marjan, the wounded lion, became a celebrity, and died in regal style after his 16 minutes of fame. No stronger evidence of the tendency of Westerners to identify more with animals than with human beings can be adduced by the author.

US military: Afghan leaders steal half of all aid
28.01.07. G. Chamberlain, Telegraph.


Official: NATO killed too many civilians
03.01.07. Mercury News.

Afghan Mission Could End NATO
08.01.07. OnLine News. Former secretary general of Nato Lord Carrington has warned that the current mission in Afghanistan could sound the "death knell" for the organisation.

NATO: poor communications to blame for civilian deaths in Afghanistan
10.01.07. AP.

DoD News Briefing with Secretary Gates From Brussels, Belgium
15.01.07. US Dept of Defense. SEC.-GEN. DE HOOP SCHEFFER transcript. “We spent of course some time on Afghanistan where it first of all is important that NATO delivers, that NATO lives up to expectations; that it is important that we embark on a comprehensive strategy and that means the involvement - you know my mantra - the full involvement of the international community, first of all of NATO, but also of the Afghan government and of the international community as a whole. You know at the 26th we'll have a meeting here of the NATO Foreign Ministers and that fits very well together I think with the Defense Ministers meeting in Seville. … I should add that we also discussed Iraq and the NATO training mission in Iraq which is running well. I would hope that training mission can be expanded in the near future; that is at least the wish of the Iraqi ( sicgovernment.” … On the transformation side of NATO, the way NATO is changing, the way NATO is adapting to 'global' threats and 'global' challenges, we discussed the items which will be on our agenda in the Seville meeting where Ministers will discuss the ongoing transformational activities of NATO.” (The main 'global' threat comes from the US government, who present a 'global' threat to our world?)

Eikenberry nominated for NATO post
19.01.07. Stars and Stripes. Army Lt. Gen. Karl Eikenberry, now in command of about 12,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, has been nominated to become the deputy chairman of the NATO Military Committee in Belgium, the Defense Department announced late Wednesday.

Surging on the Afghan Front
19.01.07. CFR.

Europe resists US pressure to boost presence in Afghanistan
27.01.07. I. Traynor, Guardian. As the European commission announced it was cutting aid to Kabul, Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, used a special meeting of Nato foreign ministers in Brussels to demand greater input from the Europeans. … Since the Taliban regime was overthrown by the Americans in 2001 the EU and member states have spent €3.7bn more than was initially pledged, according to the commission. … As well as pressing for more money, the Americans are looking to European Nato members "to share more of the burden"

Nato reveals dark arts of psy-ops
22.01.07. Times on Line. Leaflets showing the bloody body of a dead gunman and a hooded prisoner of war warned Tier 1: “Enemies of Afghanistan leave now. Capture and death await you.” The footsoldiers were told: “Choose peace, return to your homes and meet with your elders.” More than 88,000 leaflets were dropped.

NATO invites Saudi Arabia and four other GCC states to join in its Istanbul Summit

NATO sending more troops to Afghanistan
25.01.07. AP, The State. ‘Gen. David Richards said the brigade will consist of members of different nations participating in NATO's International Security Assistance Force. A brigade is typically 1,500 to 3,500 troops. Richards did not specify how many reinforcements he expected.’

U.S. to push NATO allies to match big increase in funding for Afghanistan
25.01.07. A. Gearan, 570 news.

Pak, NATO finalise draft for coalition forces in Afghanistan
26.01.07. Daily India. NATO's demand seeking tax exemption on arms and ammunition and other equipment transported to Afghanistan through air and land routes have been rejected, they said. NATO's request that its troops be allowed to carry weapons during their stay in Pakistan on way to Afghanistan has also been turned down. NATO troops would not enjoy diplomatic status during their transit stay in Pakistan and would not also be allowed to use Pakistani soil for military operations, they added.

On a google news alert, it was reported on English People’s Daily (26.01.07) that Jaap de Hoop, NATO Secretary General, said: “"The message has been clear: the international community intends to keep the initiative in Afghanistan" The following google news alert was: NATO Allies Wary of Sending More Troops to Afghanistan (26.01.07. NY Times.) (So it is that one learns to ‘read’ spin.

Condoleezza Rice At NATO Afghanistan Meeting
30.01.07. Remarks at the NATO Afghanistan Contributing Nations

6. NATO: participating countries Countries (Canada, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, UK)


War in Afghanistan chosen as Canadian news story of the year
01.01.07. Canada com.

Future of the Afghanistan conflict will be a prominent national issue in the year ahead
03.01.07. Esquimaltnews.

Canada to beef up military punch in Afghanistan, but no more infantry: general
19.01.07. Brooks Bulletin. More support elements, such as heavy artillery and, possibly aircraft, are expected to find their way to the battlefield, Lt.-Gen. Michel Gauthier, who is in charge of the Ottawa-based Canadian Expeditionary Force, acknowledged Friday.

Fresh Canadian Troops depart for Afghanistan
27.01.07. CBC.

Afghan war takes a toll on Canada
29.01.07. King / Farley, LA Times / Fairuse. For the last six months, the task of confronting insurgents in volatile Kandahar province in southern Afghanistan has largely fallen to Canada, whose troops have participated in myriad peacekeeping missions in recent years but had not seen high-intensity combat since the Korean War.
Although its nearly 3,000 troops account for less than 10% of the allied forces in Afghanistan, Canada absorbed nearly 20% of the coalition's combat deaths last year, losing 36 soldiers. A Canadian diplomat also was killed, by a suicide bomber.


08.01.07. ADNKI.


Suspend NATO membership
18.01.07. Budapest Sun. A ROW broke out last week between Defence Minister Imre Szekeres and Liam Fox, an MP with Britain’s opposition Conservative party, after the latter called for Hungary and Poland to have their NATO membership suspended due to the two countries failing to meet defence spending criteria.


Lieberman: Israel should join NATO, EU
02.01.07. Israel Today.

Nato to thrash out Afghanistan policy
07.01.07. Pak Tribune.

Israel suggests NATO troops take over occupation of Gaza Strip
14.01.07. Arab monitor. However, Israeli Deputy Defence Minister Efraim Sneh, speaking on Israel Radio, rejected Lieberman's idea saying that NATO troops in Gaza could create additional poblems because they possibly would be regarded by the Palestinians as occupation forces, on a par with the Israeli ones.


Most Italians want to withdraw troops from Afghanistan

26.01.07. adnkronos.

Divided Italy cabinet agrees funds for Afghanistan
26.01.07. Alertnet.


Blair: UK to remain in Iraq, Afghanistan in 2007
01.03.07. Jerusalem Post.

Britain 'out of step with Nato allies'
06.01.07. Ahmed Rashid, Telegraph.

British Troops face fiercest Afghanistan fight so far
12.01.07. On Line News. About 100 Royal Marines - including members of Arbroath-based 45 Commando - clashed with militants in a four-hour desert firefight after setting out on a dawn mission dubbed Operation Bauxite. … Two laser-guided 1,000lb bombs were dropped on insurgents holed up in 10ft deep irrigation ditches near Gereshk in southern Helmand. Anti-tank weapons, 105mm artillery guns and mortars were also used.

Blair signals UK will send more troops to Afghanistan
17.01.07. The Herald. during a private meeting in No 10 on Sunday, Robert Gates, the US Defence Secretary, asked the Prime Minister for additional British forces to keep up the military momentum against the insurgents. … Military sources have suggested that the US request could result in as many as 1000 extra British troops being sent to Afghanistan. If it happens, then it will put further pressure on a stretched - some say overstretched - army, which is already struggling to cope with a rolling deployment of 5800 soldiers to Afghanistan and 7100 to Iraq every six months. The Americans have 20,000 troops in Afghanistan and are about to take command of all Nato forces, including the British, next month.

Frontline troops are refused kit to fight Taliban
21.01.07. Sean Rayment, Telegraph. Demands by officers for attack weapons and vital tools, as well as night-vision equipment and thermal-imaging devices used to distinguish friend from foe, have all been refused by the Ministry of Defence.

The revelation has sparked accusations that Tony Blair has reneged on promises he made to British troops just four months ago, when he pledged that commanders would be supplied with whatever they needed to "get the job done"… all four of the Army's mine protected vehicles (MPVs), used to extract injured troops from minefields in Afghanistan, have broken down. Officers have also complained that the shortage of Chinook helicopters, first raised by senior officers last summer, was still a fundamental problem for commanders in Helmand province, where 4,500 British troops are fighting the Taliban. .. Another source described the situation in Afghanistan as "farcical". He said there were reports of specialist soldiers such as engineers and signallers being flown by helicopter to remote out-stations to perform a "two-hour job" and being stranded for a week because of the helicopter shortage.

Defence spending is lowest since the 1930s
22.01.07. Hope /Jones, Telegraph. Britain spends less of its wealth on defence than Bulgaria, Greece and Turkey despite the constant demands placed on its Armed Forces, official figures show.

'One year to win in Afghanistan'
22.01.07. C. Johnson, Times on Line.

600 more troops set to bolster frontline Afghan forces
23.01.07. M. Evans, Times on Line. An extra infantry battalion of about 600 soldiers has been put on standby to be sent to Afghanistan in March to increase the size of the British force to more than 6,500 Service personnel.

One year on, Helmand is a bloody failure
27.01.07. K. Sengupta, Independent

Inside Afghanistan: The battle for Kajaki
28.01.07. K. Sengupta, Independent.

No foreseeable end to assaults facing Royal Marines in Helmand
30.01.07. Independent. What is predictable, however, is that there is no foreseeable end to the assaults facing the Royal Marines in this, the most dangerous part of Helmand.

UK general admits to mistakes in Helmand
31.01.07. K. Sengupta, Independent. General Richards, who finishes his tenure as commander in four days, has repeatedly requested, and been denied, a reserve force. Washington has now announced, however, that his US successor, General Dan K McNeill, will get such a force when he takes over. General Richards also said publicly for the first time that he believed that the policy of British troops setting up "platoon houses"in Helmand, which led to fierce fighting and the deaths of British soldiers, eight in just one location, had been a mistake. He also revealed he had not been consulted on the policy, implemented just before he assumed command. British forces had arranged local peace deals in Helmand under which they had withdrawn in return for pledges that the Taliban would be kept out. The Americans, however, have been sceptical of such deals and there is strong apprehension among the British that they will take a much more aggressive stance.

7. Opium

More heroin from Afghanistan pouring into U.S. cities
07.01.07. Pak Tribune.

Supply and demand
12.01.07. M. Taylor, the state. U.S. drug enforcement officials deny there is an increase of drugs from Afghanistan.

Opium war revealed: Major new offensive in Afghanistan
21.01.07. R. Whitaker, Independent. The poppy fields to be targeted are on the Helmand river near Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital and headquarters of the British task force. … The British official said there were some 22,000 hectares of opium poppies in the target area. … Despite the deployment of British forces in Helmand last year, opium production in the province soared by 160 per cent, faster than anywhere else in Afghanistan.

Doctors propose using Afghan opium as NHS pain-killer
24.01.07. Justin Huggler, Independent. "If we were harvesting this drug from Afghanistan rather than destroying it, we'd be benefiting the population of Afghanistan as well as helping patients,"

Bucking US, Afghanistan won’t spray opium fields
25.01.07. AP / NBC. Karzai reportedly would spray fields in 2008 if harvest doesn’t decline

Afghanistan rejects US plan to eradicate opium poppies
26.01.07. Chicago Tribune.

Dutch troops will not aid destruction of poppy crops in Afghanistan
30.01.07. USA Today/legitgov.

Aussie police to be sent to Afghanistan
31.01.07. smh / legitgov. Justice Minister Chris Ellison said two officers would be stationed in the capital Kabul to mentor senior police and act as high-level advisers to the Afghan National Police (ANP). Another two AFP agents will work in advisory roles with the Counter Narcotics Police of Afghanistan (CNPA) in Jalalabad, in the country's east.

8. Human Rights, War Crimes: Report, Articles, Rendition, Guantanamo, Unitary Executive, Polichaki Prison, Dilawar, Media


World Report 2007
Human Rights Watch. this year's report takes particular aim at the United States which used to lead the world in promoting global human rights. But the group argues that because of the antiterrorism policies of U.S. President George W. Bush, U.S. credibility on rights has been "utterly undermined." They say “EU Should Fill Leadership Void on Human Rights.”



Deep in Le Carré country, the remote Polish airport at heart of CIA flights row
04.01.07. N. Watt, Guardian. The 737, which stayed for just 57 minutes after landing at 9pm on September 22 2003, had an unusual flight plan. It arrived from Kabul and then took off for Guantánamo Bay in Cuba, site of the US's notorious detention centre, via Warsaw, where it refuelled. … MEPs now allege that 11 "CIA-operated" planes landed in Poland from, or bound for, countries "linked with extraordinary rendition circuits and the transfer of detainees". … ‘Zbigniew Siemiatkowski, head of Poland's military intelligence agency at the time of the flights, is adamant there were no secret prisons in Poland, but admitted cooperating with the US. "I have confirmed myself that CIA planes landed in Poland ... In 2003 this cooperation was very intense. People were moved around, equipment was moved around. This required a lot of flights." ‘

Records show Diego Garcia link to alleged torture flights

At least 22 UN staffers killed in 2006
O4.01.07. R. Norton Taylor, Guardian. ‘A CIA jet flew at least twice to Poland from Kabul in Afghanistan, where the US detained numerous terrorist suspects, new details about aircraft involved in "torture flights" show. …The journeys of the aircraft, a Gulfstream registered N379P, are disclosed in a list of more than 3,000 flight logs obtained by Stephen Grey ‘Foreign Office minister Kim Howells recently told MPs that the "US authorities have repeatedly given us assurances that no detainees, prisoners of war or any other persons in this category are being held on Diego Garcia, or have at any time passed in transit through Diego Garcia or its territorial waters or airspace".’

Five years of Camp X-Ray: Why are two British residents still in Guantanamo Bay?
07.01.07. M. Woolf, Independent. Two British residents (Mr. Bishir Al Rawi; Jamil el Banna) left languishing for years in Guantanamo Bay despite being charged with no offence are suffering such serious health problems their lawyers warn they may never recover. … Both men were snatched five years ago by the CIA while on a business trip to Gambia. After a tip-off by MI5, they were arrested by Gambian authorities in 2002 and taken on a secret CIA flight to the Dark Prison in Kabul by masked Americans who claimed they were from "the embassy".

Banning CIA flights won’t end European complicity in torture
January 07. Human Rights Watch.

UK admits prior knowledge of secret CIA prison network
20.01.07. The Jurist.


Ex-Guantanamo prisoner, once among youngest held, back in U.S. custody
18.01.07. AP / / IHT. “Nearly three years after his release, an Afghan who was one of three teens from his country held at Guantanamo Bay, is in custody in Afghanistan for fighting against US Forces. Name and details withheld.

Gitmo case rankles Germany
27.01.07. J. Fleishman, LA Times /ICH. The case began in 2001 when Murat Kurnaz, a German-born Turk, was suspected of being a militant. He was detained by U.S. forces in Afghanistan, where, he says, American interrogators hung him from chains. He was transferred to Guantanamo and held until last August, when he was released. He was never charged with a crime.

The Unitary Executive

The Unitary Executive: Is The Doctrine Behind the Bush Presidency Consistent with a Democratic State?
09.01.06. JENNIFER VAN BERGEN, FindLaw.

A voice from Gitmo's darkness
11.01.07. By Jumah al-Dossari, LA Times.

The Imperial Presidency
14.01.07. D. Lithwick, Washington Post. The purpose of Guantanamo is to destroy people, and I have been destroyed." I fear he al-Dossari) is wrong. The destruction of Dossari, Padilla, Zacarias Moussaoui, Yasser Esam Hamdi and some of our most basic civil liberties was never a purpose or a goal -- it was a byproduct. The true purpose is more abstract and more tragic: to establish a clunky post-Watergate dream of an imperial presidency, whatever the human cost may be.
See also: Jane Mayer’s article on David Addington

Polichaki Prison

22 to a cell - life in a notorious Afghan prison
08.01.07. Brinley Bruton, Guardian.

Dutch court rejects ex-Afghan secret cops appeal
29.01.07. Reuters.

9. Some of the Dead in Afghanistan: ‘regrets’ are not enough

Foreign forces kill two civilians in Afghanistan: officials
01.01.07. Channel News Asia. KABUL : Two civilians were killed in a shoot-out that erupted when foreign forces raided a compound in eastern Afghanistan, officials said Monday, while Taliban rebels briefly captured a district overnight.

More than 200 people travelled in convoy to the capital of Nangahar province Sunday with the bodies of the men killed hours earlier to demand authorities confront the forces involved, provincial governor Gul Agha Sherzai said.

Torture, Lies, and Videotape
03.01.07. Arlen Parsa, Truth Out. Not long before Christmas Day 2002, a young man was being held in a US facility known as the Bagram Collection Point, in Afghanistan. Like many other Afghan nationals, he had only one name: DILAWAR. He led a simple, quiet life. He had a wife, a young daughter, and one friend. He was 22 years old, and weighed only 122 pounds. He had become a cab driver because he couldn't feed his family as a farmer anymore. Most of his captors believed he was not guilty of anything and had "simply driven his taxi past the American base at the wrong time." He died on December 10th. The incident was covered up by the Pentagon. They told inquiring reporters that he had died from natural causes. His family had no idea what really happened.

It turns out he was tortured to death by American guards and interrogators.

Aid failures are killing UK soldiers in Afghanistan, think tank claims
20.01.07. GERRI PEEV, Scotsman. “BRITISH troops are dying in Afghanistan because the government's aid department is failing to get food to the poor in the southern provinces, an international security and development think tank claims. Angry Afghans are turning to the Taleban for support, said the Senlis Council, a French think tank which has staff in the volatile Helmand province.

"The failure of USAID, the Canadian International Development Agency and DfID to provide effective development programmes has substantially contributed to the hostile environment in which the troops are fighting," Ms MacDonald said. "These agencies are therefore responsible for the significant number of military deaths." Up to 70 per cent of the population in the south was facing food shortages.

NATO Begins Fund For Civilian War Victims
26.01.07. Millions of dollars in cash and relief aid have been given by the U.S. government in recent years as compensation to relatives of civilians accidentally killed by U.S. military strikes in Iraq and Afghanistan. But since NATO took command of operations in Afghanistan last October, far less compensation has been given for innocent civilians killed in combat-weary provinces like Helmand and Kandahar.

President dubs alleged Pearl killer MI6 spy
29.09.06. Gulf Times. Pakistan President General Pervez Musharraf has disclosed that Omar Sheikh, who kidnapped and murdered American journalist Daniel Pearl and is now facing death penalty, was actually the British secret Agency MI6’s agent and had executed certain missions on their behest before coming to Pakistan and visiting Afghanistan to meet Osama and Mullah Omar.

Official: NATO Killed Too Many Civilians
02.01.07. J. STRAZIUSO, AP.

Bomb kills newborn twins, mothers in Afghanistan
07.01.07. AFP, Middle East Times.

“Civilians were killed in Paktika”, says Taliban spokesman
12.01.07. International News. Purported Taliban spokesman Mohammad Hanif said Thursday the allied forces killed the civilians in Paktika crackdown; they were not Taliban militants.

NATO forces say killed 150 “insurgents” in Afghanistan
11.01.07. Reuters. The fighting on Wednesday night was concentrated in Bermal district of Paktika province, bordering Pakistan, the statement said.

NATO Occupation Forces Kill Afghan Civilians, Police Say
12.01.07. Reuters / ICH. NATO aircraft attacked Taliban rebels in southern Afghanistan and killed 16 insurgents and 13 civilians, Afghan police said on Friday, but NATO denied causing civilian casualties.

Officials cagey on driver shot in Iraq
16.01.07. Misha Schubert, The Age. The Houston Chronicle reported recently that 95 KBR employees and subcontractors have died while working on US Government contracts in Afghanistan, Iraq and Kuwait. According to Halliburton, 430 KBR staff have been injured.

Afghan MP shot dead in Kabul
28.01.07. Pak Tribune.

President dubs alleged Pearl killer MI6 spy
29.09.06. Gulf Times. Pakistan President General Pervez Musharraf has disclosed that Omar Sheikh, who kidnapped and murdered American journalist Daniel Pearl and is now facing death penalty, was actually the British secret Agency MI6’s agent and had executed certain missions on their behest before coming to Pakistan and visiting Afghanistan to meet Osama and Mullah Omar.

Over 1,000 civilians killed in Afghanistan in 2006, Human Rights Watch says
30.01.07. Fisnik Abrashi, AP/ Sign On Sandiego. More than 1,000 civilians were killed in Afghanistan in 2006, most of them as a result of attacks by the Taliban and other anti-government forces in the country's unstable south, a rights group said Tuesday.

Human Rights Watch said that at least 100 of those civilian deaths were caused by NATO and U.S.-led troop operations, far below another estimate by an Afghan rights group.

In all, more than 4,400 Afghans – comprising civilians and combatants – died in conflict-related violence, twice as many as in 2005 and more than in any other year since the U.S. helped oust the Taliban in 2001, the Human Rights Watch said in a statement.


Media Blind to Afghan Civilian Deaths
01.01.07. Z Net.


Please also see other source material on Afghanistan:

Index on Afganistan to end 08.06.

Nato: The Bathtub of Unreadiness

Afghanistan: NATO is now US-ATO

Index on Afghanistan September 2006

Index on Afghanistan October 2006

Index on Afghanistan November 2006

Index on Afghanistan December 2006


Sarah Meyer is a researcher living in England.

The url to Index on Afghanisgan: January 2007 is:

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