Thursday, December 20, 2007

Secret Air War Confirmed

A recent (typically apologetic) study by the CSIS of US bombing raids in Iraq and Afghanistan has produced figures that confirm what many of us have been arguing - that the US has drastically escalated its aerial assault on Iraq and Afghanistan, below the radar of the corporate media. You may not have realised by how much, though. These are the figures (click to enlarge):

Which statistics, fed into Excel, produce this (click to enlarge):

As you can see, both countries have taken a hammering, but Afghanistan in particular has taken the brunt of a massive series of air attacks in part due to the 'risk-transfer' conception of war, in which civilians are to bear the brunt of death and destruction rather than US combatants. The hostile terrain of Afghanistan, and the fact that few are actually covering it very extensively, makes it an ideal target for this kind of ferocious assault - with, as we saw last year, a rolling wave of massacres in the country. Inevitably, since the air war hasn't been covered much by the media, and given its insensitivity to 'enemy' casualties, those massacres reported are a tiny sample of the true total. Without a Lancet-style survey, we will remain very much in the dark about the true nature of this assault and its effects.