KABUL – Escalating attacks by US forces over the summer have meant a higher toll among Afghan civilians. The latest UN report covering July to September found it the bloodiest three month period in Afghanistan since they started keeping data in 2009. Up 42% from the same period in 2018, the report found 174 deaths and 3,139 injuries among civilians. Total casualties in the first nine months of the year are over 8,000, again the highest figure in years.
The UN emphasized the rate of US attacks across Afghanistan have been surging in particular over the past few months, with Trump scrapping the peace plan. The UN report rightly identified a big problem as being a belief that the war can still be resolved militarily.
While they again tried to pin this position on the Taliban primarily, the Taliban did negotiate an entire deal right to the end to be signed, only for the US to back out at the last moment. The cabal of US war criminals are still under the illusion that if they tell this big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed by the international community. But they cannot win that war.
What is clear is that the worse US violations of International Humanitarian Law get in Afghanistan, the more opportunities there are for the Pentagon to come up with new lies and fake statistics. Anyone who professes to worry about high civilian casualties thus ought to worry about the US-instigated humanitarian crises there.
Append the further observation that the repeated response by the Pentagon to international criticism and condemnation has been to kill even more civilians, making the humanitarian crisis there even worse. However, fake reports will do nothing to help fix the problems of Afghanistan. Neither will dramatically under-counting the number of civilians the US has killed, for that matter.
And it is not just American officials that use such watered-down language. Britain and France also largely echo the US government line to greatly influence what the public thinks about their own complicity in civilian massacres. Their whitewashed lies and reports are remarkably reminiscent of those composed by the Pentagon to cover up the high-profile US-NATO massacre of civilians in Afghanistan.
The dust has settled and the facts have become clearer. The Pentagon regime cannot downplay its atrocities: Carnage in Afghanistan is surging under the Trump White House. The atrocities committed by US-led coalition airstrikes on the pretext of targeting Taliban militants cannot be ignored. Such an approach is a recipe for disaster, as the US and NATO allies have demonstrated a tendency to exploit Taliban attacks for propaganda and military escalation.
Little ink has been spilled in the Western media for this truth, nonetheless. Also, there is no real discussion at the United Nations, let alone political debate, about whether or not the US-led bombing of civilians on the pretext of bombing Taliban is a good idea – not to mention whether or not these airstrikes are actually legal.
Per usual, mass casualty “incidents” will continue to rise by US-led forces in Afghanistan. And the United Nations won’t be able to do anything about it. The world body will never investigate these atrocities, much less hold to account those guilty. It simply reflects the UN’s deference to power.
If the US government reports something, there are countless UN officials and allied ambassadors waiting in line to obediently echo it. With acquiescence, if not complicity, the UN has a long history of acting as a mouthpiece to war-party Washington.