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05/07/2009 11:49 AM ID: 78619 Permalink   

Up to 120 Civilians Dead in US Airstrike, Afghanistan


Ganjabad and Gerani, AFGHANISTAN - 120 civilians were killed during a U.S. bombing, claims the Red Cross, marking the bloodiest episode since the 2001 U.S.-led invasion. Red Cross members and and their family were also among the slain.

Official and unofficial counter-claims have been made varying from Taliban's use of human shields to Taliban commanders order the slaying of villagers and blaming it on the U.S. forces.

Last August, the U.N. claimed 90 civilians died in Azizabad (U.S. claimed the number to be 33). In recent demonstrations Afghani Police have shot and wounded local protesters, angry at the deaths.

    WebReporter: redstain Show Calling Card    
ASSESS this news: BLOCK this news. Reason:
  What in the hell...  
are the US doing, are they enjoying slaughter people that are already being persecuted and just because they can't catch these Taliban.
How Brave of the police, take them to a wall and shoot the lot.
  by: captainJane     05/07/2009 01:50 PM     
  they're good  
In making a lose lose situation for those who try to invade. So... how about we just lose this, and go for a win at home?
  by: Trevelyan   05/07/2009 02:47 PM     
  That will win their hearts and minds...  
There's nothing like blowing up someone's family and friends to convince them of how wonderful the US is. And if you don't like it we'll pay your own police to kill you too. I'm sure this will work.....asshats.
  by: Valkyrie123     05/07/2009 03:38 PM     
  Red Cross  
Stop them complaining.....Bomb the crap out of them...Up yours USA......
  by: steve2045     05/07/2009 05:29 PM     
  Death Toll up to: 147 (updated at source)  
Watch this news get buried so quick. Has anyone seen news from Afghanistan lately? The Iraqi one was more popular than the reality shows.

This news has been suppressed so much, I'm wondering who's actually doing the dirty:

Article includes:
* Hillary Clinton
* Hamid Karzai
* Gen. Kieran (US, NATO)
* lot more top brass than you can shake a stick at
  by: redstain   05/07/2009 06:42 PM     
  And people wonder  
why other countries Hate americans. What a disgust...
  by: pineal420   05/07/2009 09:54 PM     
  I really hate that  
it happened, but what else can be expected if one is going try to live in a combat zone.?.?
  by: Hytekhik   05/07/2009 10:04 PM     
I'm pretty sure the people there probably can't help where they live. Oh, and it probably wouldn't be a combat zone if we, um, stopped dropping bombs in it?

I read one article which stated in one attack 45 people were killed, 39 of which were women and children. Way to go, USA. I bet those women and children were going to bring about my demise! I feel so much safer now!! War on Terror! Yeah!!

I hope all of those people who were proud to be an American again are eating their words now. I'm still pretty ashamed to be an American.
  by: deadvenusblue     05/07/2009 10:12 PM     
I thank god every day for keeping people like the posters in this article out of power.
  by: alcred   05/07/2009 11:23 PM     
  @alcred: why?  
Are they being unpatriotic?
  by: redstain   05/07/2009 11:41 PM     
  @alcred: why?  
Are they being unpatriotic?
  by: redstain   05/08/2009 01:13 AM     
You all seem to be making out that the U.S is trying to kill civ's or enjoys it.

It is a great tragedy that this happened and it needs to be sorted out why it happened and how it can never happen again.

You need to understand though...this is war, in war there are unintended tragedy's. It has happened all throughout history, and it will follow into the future, death follows war.

On top of all this, this is one of the hardest types of wars to fight, un-uniformed millitants walking among civillians, ready to blow up said civillians at any time. Seriously what did you expect?
  by: pexa02   05/08/2009 01:29 AM     
  @pexa: "war is hell"  
You claim that there are casualties...
If you're up in a plane; where does the tactical order come from to bomb a VILLAGE? Oh look, lots of tightly packed [small] building, enough for at least 147 (I dunno the size of the village yet) villagers. Hmm.. must be an abandoned rock festival; deploy multiple 1000 pound bomb. <<-- Notice the disconnect in logic there?

You can't assume that the whole of Afghanistan has decided to evacuate the entire country 'cos we're in the vicinity.

Un-uniformed militants. That'd be the protesters you're radicalizing when the police shot at them.

What did I seriously expect, I expected you and perhaps BBird, Malefice and Cray0la to come out of the woodwork to defend/justify it.
  by: redstain   05/08/2009 03:54 AM     
Defending it? i don't know how you got that from my post, maybe you just like grouping people and their views into a nice neat package so they are easier to identify and attack?

Like i said (which you conviently ignored), this was a tragedy, it shouldn't have happened and steps should be taken to ensure it never happens again. It is always terrible when innocent civillians are killed due to a conflict between two idealogical forces, whether it is 1 or 120.

"Un-uniformed militants. That'd be the protesters you're radicalizing when the police shot at them."

you have taken me out of context, i was talking about the war in general, not this specific incident.

What i WAS attempting to say infact was a reply to posts such as this.
"are the US doing, are they enjoying slaughter people that are already being persecuted and just because they can't catch these Taliban."

Prehaps if you take a breath, read that quote, then read what i wrote, you might understand a little better what i was saying and what i wasn't.
Alernativly you could just reply with another surefire us vs them attitude and ignore most of what i say.

It's easy to get caught up in the emotion of it all, its harder to step back and look at the big picture.
  by: pexa02   05/08/2009 06:31 AM     
  @pexa: "tragedy": a trigger word that disempowers (Tragedy)

Tragedys are Greek or Shakespearean plays about suffering where the audiance watches but has no power over.

The crash was a tragedy. [but we didn't implement safety procedures]
The war is a tragedy. [But we didn't speak out against it]
The flood was a tragedy. [but our deforestation caused it]

Tragedy is a term where people can 'shrug' their shoulders in an attempt to distance themselves.

It is also a word people use to invite others to do the same; dismiss it .. like a TV novella.
  by: redstain   05/08/2009 01:31 PM     
do tend to kill a lot of innocent people. However, there are other countries around the world doing likewise, Myanmar and Zimbabwe for instance. It's hardly good company to be in but they're certainly not alone.
  by: Maxx20     05/08/2009 03:35 PM     
  The way i see it  
Secondary objective complete.

I am against bombing civilian but you have to admit that 120 casualties when they were not supposed to be the objective is a little weird to say the least...
  by: Korzen   05/08/2009 03:37 PM     
  They are mighty pissed

The article is kind of long if you want to read/post it I'm not good at this stuff. But I have an interesting quote from the article:

"Pictures of the aftermath of the attack show people standing beside the remains of a relative which often only looks like a muddy pile of torn meat."
  by: Korzen   05/09/2009 02:51 AM     
  Lets be onest, Nobody in America cares  
if a few "Sand-N*****s" get killed. Sadly this is the attitude of many Americans. The USA is the new Third Reich in my Opinion.
  by: evilrat   05/09/2009 03:27 AM     
  Collateral Damage  
Is the name that the US has used for many years when reporting civilian casualties in a war zone. Six syllables that sanitize and distance us all from the actual horror of combat.
  by: White Albino   05/09/2009 12:20 PM     
A lot of Americans don't care when the news story reads, "10 Americans killed in Iraq".

What's your point?
  by: Dayron   05/09/2009 02:00 PM     
Your over-analytical approach to the term "tragedy" doesn't make it any less true.

Try to actually see what "pexa" is saying. You sound like you're arguing with yourself.

He did not defend the US. And when you accused him of it, and he denied you, to decided to tear apart terms that he used in order to prove he's defending it.
  by: Dayron   05/09/2009 02:09 PM     
  Sorry, slaughtered the English language...  
"and he denied you, to decided to tear apart terms that he used in order to prove he's defending it."


"And he denied it, you decided...etc."
  by: Dayron   05/09/2009 02:10 PM     
"On top of all this, this is one of the hardest types of wars to fight, un-uniformed millitants walking among civillians, ready to blow up said civillians at any time. Seriously what did you expect?"

Maybe I'm taking this out of context - maybe not. This statement sounds like:

"un-uniformed millitants walking among civillians, ready to blow up said civillians at any time." -pexa

The 2+hr airstrike doesn't seem like the work of un-uniformed militants.

Apathy of Afghanistan is due to the lack of media coverage. 1000 casualties so far.
  by: redstain   05/09/2009 04:46 PM     
  What "tragedy"  
anyone taken a look at how this is being covered in the US press that really is a "tragedy".

The Bad PR of Dead Civilians
Afghan airstrikes and the corporate media


Early reports of a massive U.S. attack on civilians in western Afghanistan last week (5/5/09) hewed to a familiar corporate media formula, stressing official U.S. denials and framing the scores of dead civilians as a PR setback for the White House's war effort.

Scanning the headlines gave a sense of the media's view of the tragedy: "Civilian Deaths Imperil Support for Afghan War" (New York Times, 5/7/09), "Claim of Afghan Civilian Deaths Clouds U.S. Talks" (Wall Street Journal, 5/7/09), "Afghan Civilian Deaths Present U.S. With Strategic Problem" (Washington Post, 5/8/09).

As is frequently the case with such incidents (Extra! Update, 8/07), the primary fallout would seem to be the damage done to U.S. goals. The New York Times reported that civilian deaths "have been a decisive factor in souring many Afghans on the war." As CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric put it (5/6/09), "Reports of these civilian casualties could not have come at a worse time, as the Obama administration launches its new strategy to eradicate the Taliban and convince the Afghan people to support those efforts." Other outlets used very similar language to explain why the timing was "particularly sensitive" (Washington Post, 5/7/09) or "awkward" (Associated Press, 5/7/09) for the Obama administration.

While it is important to be cautious about early reports of such atrocities, many accounts played up U.S. denials. Some anonymous U.S. military officials vigorously denied that they were responsible, instead blaming the deaths on Taliban grenades and use of "human shields."

The New York Times reported (5/7/09):

Defense Department officials said late Wednesday that investigators were looking into witnesses’ reports that the Afghan civilians were killed by grenades hurled by Taliban militants, and that the militants then drove the bodies around the village claiming the dead were victims of an American airstrike.

The initial examination of the site and of some of the bodies suggested the use of armaments more like grenades than the much larger bombs used by attack planes, said the military official, who requested anonymity because the investigation was continuing.

It is troubling to see an anonymous source given so much space to make such an elaborate case, seemingly based on little evidence. By the next day's edition of the Times (5/8/09), military sources appeared to be backtracking: "Initial American military reports that some of the casualties might have been caused by Taliban grenades, not American airstrikes, were 'thinly sourced,' a Pentagon official in Washington said Thursday, indicating that he was uncertain of their accuracy." That "thin" sourcing was good enough for most of the press, though, and similar instances continued.

On CNN's American Morning (5/8/09), anchor Kiran Chetry announced, "CNN is learning that the Taliban may have been using women, children and men as human shields during U.S. air strikes earlier this week." That would stretch the meaning of "learning" quite a bit, since CNN's reporter from Afghanistan, Stan Grant, had little to report beyond vague official assertions ("We're still waiting for a formal statement, a formal report to come down from the U.S. military here in Kabul"). CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr had already (5/6/09) floated the "much grimmer scenario" coming from U.S. officials--that the Taliban had killed civilians and then paraded them around the area.

On May 8, the Washington Post was stressing the notion that, whatever the truth, Afghans are going to believe what they want: "The truth of what happened in Farah may be less important than what the Afghan people believe took place in the remote western region. [Defense Secretary Robert] Gates said that a cornerstone of the Taliban campaign is to blame civilian deaths on U.S. troops."

CBS's Couric (5/6/09) likewise posited to U.S. Army General David McKiernan: "Whatever the outcome, rumors alone that many civilians were killed by U.S. airstrikes--that is very problematic, particularly at this moment in time." Couric closed her report by paraphrasing McKiernan's assessment: "The general added, because it takes time to uncover the truth, the U.S. is at a distinct disadvantage in the propaganda war with the Taliban, who often blame the United States for any civilian deaths."

It is difficult to see the corporate media's credulous, cursory coverage of these killings as evidence of a U.S. public relations "disadvantage."
  by: Hugo Chavez     05/12/2009 07:29 PM     
  another update  
Pentagon: US Forces Violated Rules in Afghan Bombings

A Pentagon probe has found US forces committed serious errors in the deadly bombings of two Afghan villages last month. According to the New York Times, the investigation found at least half the bombings wouldn’t have occurred had US forces followed operational rules. It’s the latest acknowledgment of wrongdoing after the Pentagon’s initial effort to blame the Taliban for the casualties. The death toll remains disputed, with the Afghan government claiming 140 civilians were killed and the US claiming a lower figure of thirty civilians dead.
  by: Hugo Chavez     06/04/2009 10:22 AM     
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