War Developments

OVER 1,000 civilians have been killed by the US bombing campaign in Afghanistan according to the Taliban. Many more innocents are certain to die as the US uses B52 bombers to drop cluster bombs, i.e., landmines from the sky.

By Stephen Boyd
Socialist Voice November 2001

It is estimated by international aid agencies that 100,000 Afghan children could die this winter because food aid can't penetrate the bombing campaign to feed those desperately in need. The brutality of this war is graphically portrayed by the pictures of dead children and those horribly maimed by the so-called mistakes of the US Airforce. 1000lb bombs have ripped through mud brick and wooden huts. In one example of 'collateral damage' eight members of one family died including four boys under the age of eight. The civilians who are injured in these attacks have virtually no chance of survival as the hospitals have no electricity and no blood. Half a million Afghans have fled their homes already but have no where safe to go.

Even US Republican Senator Chuck Hagel admits: 'When people have no hope because they're living in poverty and hunger and pestilence, people like bin Laden will seize upon that lack of hope. Until we start to recognise that...we will never really get to the core of stopping terrorism.' This war, even if it overthrows the Taliban and eliminates bin Laden will not solve the problems that face the Afghan people. The US, Britain and their fragile international coalition are trying to stick together a coalition of mass murderers and reactionary warlords to replace the Taliban. This coalition if it ever gets to power will be fundamentally no different to the oppressive Taliban regime.

The anti-war movement internationally is growing. In London on 13 October 50,000 marched against the war. Blair is feeling the pressure as is clearly seen by his panicked attempts to reclaim the high moral ground recently in media, by reminding people not to forget why 'we' are fighting this war, and not to forget the victims of 11 September. But as the growth of the anti-war movement shows, many people are now drawing the conclusion that this war will only create thousands of more innocent victims to add to the death toll of 11 September and create the conditions for more terrorist attacks.

This war is expected to cost the world economy 470 billion. In Britain the cost is estimated at 13 billion. Instead of using this money to save the hospitals under threat of closure across Northern Ireland, New Labour believes it is more of a priority to kill innocent Afghans. Get involved in the anti-war movement, but don't stop there. Join with us to fight for a socialist world, free from poverty, war and terror.

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