Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Covered Up: One Massacre in Iraq, and One Village Destroyed in Afghanistan. posted by Richard SeymourSocialist Worker carries a report by Simon Assaf on the massacre at Najaf I wrote about last week. It contains a link to video footage of some of those rounded up by Iraqi security forces after what the puppet government had alleged was a firefight between soldiers at an army checkpoint and a 'messianic cult'. The arrested, of course, are clearly civilians, including many women and children, which gives further support to the investigations which have suggested a politically motivated massacre by the SCIRI.
You might have heard today that in Afghanistan, a 'Taliban base' was 'cleared'. This base consisted, reportedly, of nothing more than 'compounds' in which 'Taliban fighters' lived. It has been reported in sources like Agence France Press with the soft sell of the British MoD (Mendacity or Death), in which readers are told that with the pesky Taliban out of the way, a new hydroelectric dam can be built. However, I am reliably informed that on Indian television stations, a different picture is emerging: it is reported that the 'Taliban base' that was 'cleared' by Royal Marines was in fact a village, and the residents have now been left homeless. The reports come with footage of the destroyed mud houses and smoke billowing into the air. It was surreptitiously reported some while ago that the resistance, especially in the Helmand province, is not exclusively or necessarily principally the Taliban. If there is popular local resistance to the occupiers, then the adoption of tactics that punish the civilian population is one characteristic response of occupying forces. If I find out more, I'll tell you more. Meanwhile, the IRIN news service reports that 8,000 people have already been driven out of their homes in Musa Qasala after Nato forces dropped two bombs on the village, destroying a passenger car. It is anticipated that Nato intends to launch further air strikes in operations against Taliban forces which have taken the village.