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And, yes, I DO take it personally: Not only doesn't the U.S. care what its own people think, it doesn't care what leaders of other countries think
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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Not only doesn't the U.S. care what its own people think, it doesn't care what leaders of other countries think

glenn has pointed out repeatedly (most recently here) - as has noam chomsky and others - that, for our ruling, super-rich, global elites and their bought-and-paid-for governmental puppets who claim to act on our behalf, listening to the citizenry is an annoyance and a distraction at best but, nonetheless, an illusion worth maintaining if for nothing else to keep the masses docile...

it's particularly sad and disturbing when the u.s. feels it can summarily ignore the president of afghanistan (surrounded by corruption though he might be) when he decries the killing of innocent people in his own country...


A spate of horrific civilian killings by NATO in Afghanistan has led Afghan President Hamid Karzai to demand that NATO cease all air attacks on homes. That is likely to be exactly as significant you think it would be, as The Los Angeles Times makes clear:

"This should be the last attack on people's houses," the president told a news conference in Kabul. "Such attacks will no longer be allowed."

Karzai's call was viewed as mainly symbolic. Western military officials cited existing cooperation with Afghan authorities and pledged to continue consultations, but said privately that presidential authority does not include veto power over specific targeting decisions made in the heat of battle

So we're in Afghanistan to bring Freedom and Democracy to the Afghan People, but the President of the country has no power whatsoever to tell us to stop bombing Afghan homes. His decrees are simply requests, "merely symbolic." Karzai, of course, is speaking not only for himself, but even more so for (and under pressure from) the Afghan People: the ones we're there to liberate, but who -- due to their strange, primitive, inscrutable culture and religion -- are bizarrely angry about being continuously liberated from their lives: "Karzai's statements . . . underscored widespread anger among Afghans over the deaths of noncombatants at the hands of foreign forces."

A poll of Afghan men released earlier this month by the International Council on Security and Development found overwhelming opposition to NATO operations in their country.




The Taliban is widely unpopular among Afghans (though in the South, a majority oppose military operations against them); but whatever else is true, 8 out of 10 men, spread throughout all regions of that country, believe that NATO operations are bad for the Afghan people.

i have the honor and privilege of working closely with a number of afghans in my current project not to mention those i've worked with in past years... i must point out that most afghans are among the nicest, sharpest, kindest and thoroughly decent people you'd ever want to meet... (i say "most" because - no surprise - afghanistan, just like everywhere in the world, has its share of a-holes and jerks...) i'm blessed, however, that over my years of working in afghanistan, i've developed a few very close afghan friends, friends that i know wouldn't hesitate to throw their bodies across the tracks for me (a poor metaphor since there are currently no railroads in afghanistan) and they know i would do the same for them... and, as i'm sure is the case with most of us, there simply aren't a lot of friends - afghan or otherwise - we can say that about...

the afghans only want what all of us want - the means to put food on the table, a roof over the heads of their families, clothes on their backs and the ability to live in a little peace and quiet - and who can argue with that...? there is simply no excuse for the killing of innocent women and children and i'm becoming less and less convinced of the need for killing of any sort, no matter what the supposed justification...

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