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NATO Airstrike Kills Three Afghan Children


October 16, 2012
AntiWar.com & Agence France-Presse

A NATO airstrike killed three children in Afghanistan‘s Helmand province on Sunday, Afghan officials report. "Two Taliban mine-planters were identified and targeted by [NATO] from the air and killed," district police chief Ahmad Shah Khan told AFP. "Three children, two boys and a girl, who were nearby collecting firewood were also killed." Civilian casualties caused by NATO operations have turned people against the Afghan government and serve as a Taliban recruiting tool.

http://news.antiwar.com/2012/10/15/nato-airstrike-kills-three-afghan-children/



NATO Airstrike Kills Three Afghan Children
John Glaser / AntiWar.com

(October 15, 2012) -- A NATO airstrike killed three children in Afghanistan‘s Helmand province on Sunday, Afghan officials said Monday. "Two Taliban mine-planters were identified and targeted by ISAF from the air and killed," district police chief Ahmad Shah Khan told AFP. "Three children, two boys and a girl, who were nearby collecting firewood were also killed," Khan added.

The claim that two insurgents and three children were killed was corroborated by another Afghan official in Helmand. The US-led coalition in Afghanistan confirmed the airstrike took place and said three insurgents were killed, but that it would investigate the claims that children were killed.

NATO airstrikes rather frequently kill innocent Afghan children and other civilians in a war that a large segment across the American political spectrum now believes is useless and a failure.

The NATO response to killing innocents in airstrikes is typically to claim an investigation has started, or that they formally apologize. No accountability for the loss of life is forced on the military occupiers who are needlessly killing Afghans



Children Killed in NATO Attack: Afghan Officials
Agence France-Presse

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (October 15, 2012) — Afghan officials said Monday that a NATO air strike killed three children while it was targeting Taliban insurgents planting mines on a road in southern Afghanistan. NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) confirmed an air strike in Helmand province's Nawa district on Sunday, saying that three insurgents died and it was investigating reports that children were also killed.

"Two Taliban mine-planters were identified and targeted by ISAF from the air and killed," district police chief Ahmad Shah Khan told AFP. "Three children, two boys and a girl, who were nearby collecting firewood were also killed," Khan added.

Farid Ahmad Farhang, a spokesman for Helmand police, confirmed the incident and said the raid killed two insurgents and three children.

Civilian casualties caused in NATO operations against insurgents are a sensitive issue in relations between the US-led force and the government of President Hamid Karzai. Karzai often reacts angrily, arguing that such incidents turn people against his administration amid an ongoing insurgency by Taliban Islamists trying to bring him down.

Thousands of civilians are killed in the war each year, with the United Nations saying the vast majority of such deaths are caused by insurgents.

Copyright © 2012 AFP. All rights reserved.


Killing Children in Afghanistan
John Glaser / AntiWar.com

(October 16, 2011) -- The estimable Angela Keaton crystallized the war in her last post [1] (below). The war becomes difficult for the establishment to talk about when it is presented as it is by the video of injured Iraqi children. They can't inject their technocratic policy-wonkery, and even nationalistic themes and Exceptionalist rhetoric [2] is grossly misplaced…. For context, civilian casualties in Afghanistan have seen a sharp rise in 2011 [3].

In a US airstrike in July, 14 civilians were killed, 8 of them children [4]. In May, US soldiers killed a 12 year old Afghan girl in a night raid [5]. In March, nine Afghan boys collecting firewood in eastern Afghanistan were annihilated [6] by US airstrikes. US-supported Afghan militias have recently beat children, hammered nails into the feet of a young boy, and gang-raped another 13-year-old boy [7]. In February of last year, a US night raid killed a teenage girl and two pregnant women [8].

In September of last year, NATO attack helicopters bombed seven civilians, four of them children [9]. A UN report last year found that almost 350 Afghan children were killed in 2009 alone.[10]

In another video, from back in 2008, the Guardian covers various incidents of atrocities against Afghanistan civilians by coalition forces [11]. It doesn't allow embedding, so click the link to see it. Here's a quote from one of the people interviewed the video's corresponding article:

"We were walking, I was holding my grandson's hand, then there was a loud noise and everything went white. When I opened my eyes, everybody was screaming. I was lying metres from where I had been, I was still holding my grandson's hand but the rest of him was gone. I looked around and saw pieces of bodies everywhere. I couldn't make out which part was which."

And yet all Barack Obama and his minions in Congress can talk about regarding the Afghan war is the extraordinary service of American soldiers [12], lies [13] about Afghan security [14], and arbitrary dates which we are misleadingly told [15] will see an American withdrawal. The useless, aimless, lie of a war [16] continues unabated, without any attention paid to children like Grana [17].

Footnotes

[1] crystallized the war in her last post: http://www.antiwar.com/blog/2011/10/15/putrid-vulargity-on-the-ap-wire/

[2] nationalistic themes and Exceptionalist rhetoric: http://original.antiwar.com/jglaser/2011/07/06/the-ism-that-wont-go-away/

[3] a sharp rise in 2011: http://costsofwar.org/article/afghan-civilians

[4] 14 civilians were killed, 8 of them children: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/07/07/another-nato-strike-kills-14-afghan-civilians-in-khost/

[5] killed a 12 year old Afghan girl in a night raid: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/05/12/nato-troops-kill-12-year-old-afghan-girl-police-officer-in-overnight-raid/

[6] nine Afghan boys collecting firewood in eastern Afghanistan were annihilated: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/03/01/nato-kills-nine-children-in-afghan-air-strike/

[7] beat children, hammered nails into the feet of a young boy, and gang raped another 13 year old boy: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/09/12/us-supported-afghan-militias-commit-widespread-human-rights-abuses/

[8] killed a teenage girl and two pregnant women: http://news.antiwar.com/2010/02/12/family-us-troops-killed-civilians-in-latest-afghan-night-raid/

[9] four of them children: http://news.antiwar.com/2010/09/29/nato-kills-four-children-in-afghan-attack/

[10] almost 350 Afghan children were killed in 2009 alone: http://news.antiwar.com/2010/02/24/un-report-346-afghan-children-killed-in-2009-mostly-by-nato/

[11] various incidents of atrocities against Afghanistan civilians by coalition forces: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2008/dec/16/afghanistan-civilian-casualties

[12] extraordinary service of American soldiers: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/10/07/obama-marks-decade-in-afghanistan-with-false-statements-on-wars/

[13] lies: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/10/05/al-qaeda-affiliated-terror-cell-in-kabul-broken-up-afghan-officials-say/

[14] Afghan security: http://www.antiwar.com/blog/2011/09/13/elites-know-their-foreign-policy-endangers-america/

[15] misleadingly told: http://www.antiwar.com/blog/2011/10/10/how-war-monger-in-chief-will-again-get-the-peace-vote/

[16] useless, aimless, lie of a war: http://news.antiwar.com/2011/10/06/nothing-gained-in-ten-years-of-afghan-war/

[17] Grana: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2009/jun/25/afghanistan

Posted in accordance with Title 17, Section 107, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.

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