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Afghanistan– Time To Pack Up And Come Home… Fast

Posted by DownWithTyranny on March 12th, 2012

From our partners at DownWithTyranny!

Yesterday we talked about how Congressmembers on the take from the armaments industry and from defense contractors– particularly Rep. Buck McKeon (R-CA) and Sen. John McKeon (R-AZ)– are advocating for extending the already catastrophic and pointless occupation of Afghanistan… and for expanding it into Iran and Syria. Absolutely insane! These are dangerous sociopaths and voters in their constituencies should take the responsibility for removing them. We also mentioned the senators who had signed a letter to President Obama calling on him to accelerate the withdrawal from that country. Unmentioned at the time was another southern California Republican congressman who sees things very differently than his neighbor, bribe-besotted Buck McKeon. Dana Rohrabacher may be a right-wing extremist, but he at least has had some real life experience in Afghanistan– he actually did pal around with the terrorists at one point!

Rep. Rohrabacher dressed up as a Talib on the extreme right

Nonetheless, as Karzai and his cronies scurry all over southern Europe building villas from the money they skimmed off the U.S. aide bonanza and from the drug trade, Rohrabacher us demanding we at least look into the warlord and druglord culture our tax dollars are bolstering in this forlorn country. Yesterday another tragedy took place, in the Pashtun heartland, sure to further inflame Afghans against the American occupiers and the government who many Afs now see as collaborators.

Western forces shot dead 16 civilians including nine children in southern Kandahar province on Sunday, Afghan officials said, in a rampage that witnesses said was carried out by American soldiers who were laughing and appeared drunk.

One Afghan father who said his children were killed in the shooting spree accused soldiers of later burning the bodies.

Witnesses told Reuters they saw a group of U.S. soldiers arrive at their village in Kandahar’s Panjwayi district at around 2 am, enter homes and open fire.

Rohrabacher’s demands, though, aren’t directly related to this particular event. Last week, he called for an official GAO investigation into Karzai “misappropriating foreign aid funding to benefit himself and his family.”

The request for an investigation coincides with consideration in Congress of President Barack Obama’s 2013 budget proposal that includes $2.5 billion for Afghanistan.

Rohrabacher’s March 7 letter to the comptroller general of the Government Accountability Office asked for a report to Congress on US foreign aid funds that “have been stolen, diverted or otherwise inappropriately gone to, or benefited Afghan President Hamid Karzai and his family.”

Rohrabacher is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on oversight and investigations.

“American taxpayer money must cease being diverted and abused by the leader of a country whose people America has tried so valiantly to help,” Rohrabacher’s letter said. “A report that thoroughly quantifies how much US foreign aid has gone to the Karzai family is urgently needed.”

He cited media reports and Wikileaks cables as sources for his allegations.

The New York Times reported March 7 that Karzai’s brother, Mahmoud Karzai, received interest-free loans to buy a stake in the Kabul Bank, where the allegations of financial corruption are centered.

They involve suspicions that bank and government officials skimmed foreign aid money intended to support US and coalition forces in Afghanistan.

The bank came close to insolvency but was bailed out by the Afghan government with funds partially subsidised by Western nations.

“It is time to know for sure, on the record, exactly how dishonest the government in Kabul has become and how much money we are wasting there,” Rohrabacher wrote.

Yesterday’s tragedy overshadows all the smaller tragedies that keep happening throughout Afghanistan and are inevitable when one country is occupied by another. Like the one from Friday the Times article glosses over:

In a separate incident, four Afghans were killed and three wounded on Friday when coalition helicopters apparently hunting Taliban insurgents fired instead on villagers in Kapisa province in eastern Afghanistan, according to Abdul Hakim Akhondzada, governor of Tagab district in Kapisa.

Yeah, time to come home… past time to come home. And most Americans agree

A majority of Americans– 55 percent– believe that most Afghans are opposed to what the United States is trying to accomplish in that country, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. About as many Americans– 54 percent– want the U.S. military to withdraw even before it can train the Afghan army to be self-sufficient, a pillar of President Obama’s war strategy.

While most Democrats and independents soured on the war a long time ago, the poll found that Republicans, for the first time, are evenly split on whether the ­decade-long war is worth fighting.

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