Weekly Update into Afghanistan Situation – March 19, 2010

-A Los Angeles Times report from this past Saturday announced that Taliban militants were now refusing to collaborate with Al Qaeda fighters. Newsflash!: The Taliban has refused to co-operate with Al Qaeda since at least 1998. Afghanis fighting foriegn-occupation in their country, of whom the Taliban make up only about 10% (despite what your meanstream media tells you), have always seen Al Qaeda as a foriegn entity and therefore no different from the Soviet, American or Canadian armies as an occupying force of imposition.
-In fact, evidence now available from various sources, including recently declassified U.S. State Department documents, show that the Taliban regime imposed strict isolation on Al Qaeda affiliates, including Osama Bin Landen, as early as 1998 in order to prevent any terrorist plots against the United States, which the Taliban have never supported.

-The evidence contradicts all claims by top officials of the Barack Obama administration that the Taliban was complicit in the terrorist attacks in the United States on Sep. 11, 2001. It also bolsters the credibility of Taliban statements in recent months asserting that the Taliban has no interest in Al Qaeda’s global jihadist aims.
-It is becoming increasingly clear to the citizens of Afghanistan and the Middle East that Al Qaeda is a ghost organization that serves the purpose of giving US politicians and media the pretext and justification for invading and occupying countries like Iraq and Afghanistan. The people of Afghanistan have long realized this and don’t need to be micro-managed by people who haven’t, or worse, by the people who use the narrative of Al Qaeda to serve their own interests at the expense of others.
-A US State Department report released on March 11, 2010 declared that:
“The country’s human rights record remained poor. Human rights problems included extrajudicial killings, torture, poor prison conditions, official impunity, prolonged pretrial detention, restrictions on freedom of the press, restrictions on freedom of religion, violence and societal discrimination against women, restrictions on religious conversions, abuses against minorities, sexual abuse of children, trafficking in persons, abuse of worker rights, the use of child soldiers in armed conflict, and child labor.”
and this is a US State Department description of the government that US and Canadian soldiers are dying to keep in place.
-CNN announced this past week that the US military was changing its policies regarding holding Afghani Detainees. Previously, the US military was allowed to hold Afghanis for 96 hours without charge during questioning. This week the US military announced that it would expand this time frame to 14 days for holding prisioners without charge. This news might come as a shock, no pun intended, to prisoners still in Guantanomo Bay who have been held without charge for as long as 8 years in some cases.

An Ottawa University professor, Amir Attaran, claimed on the CBC that he has seen first-hand some of the documents that the Canadian government refuses to release to Canadian Parliament and the Canadian Public and that these documents show that Canda is involved in the torture of Afghanis up to their eyeballs:
“If these documents were released [in full], what they will show is that Canada partnered deliberately with the torturers in Afghanistan for the interrogation of detainees,” he said.
The professor further states that what these documents show is that Canada is guilty of war crimes.
“There would be a question of rendition and a question of war crimes on the part of certain Canadian officials. That’s what’s in these documents, and that’s why the government is covering up as hard as it can.”
-On the program last week we speculated that these documents might reveal Canada’s hands-on particpation in the torture of Afghanis. Professor Attaran, from the University of Ottawa, who has seen some of the documents, makes it clear that these documents will implicate Canadian government officials in War Crimes.
-The FMA contacted Amir Attaran for an interview but he told us that he is unable to reveal more information because of “the limits of his promises to others”

-No wonder the conservative Government has gone to such extraordinary lengths to keep these documents secret. Even as far as shutting down parliament through prorogation. Opposition MPs clearly state that the government-proposed Iacobucci-inquiry to address the issue of Afghani Detainees is simply a tactic to avoid proper accountability on the issue.

Frank Iacobucci, despite his credentials, is not a sitting judge and therefore can’t legally rule or force the government to do anything, it isn’t even clear if the government will make his recomendations or the hearing itself public. Canadians should take note and demand a full public inquiry into the Afghani Detainee issue. Anything less would be unpatriotic. Because the actions of the Conservative government have hung the stigma of war crimes over the entire country, a full, open public inquiry is the only way to answer the question of Canada’s guilt to ourselves, as well as the rest of the world.

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Filed under Canadian Politics, Community Rights, Human Rights, International Politics, Political Accountability, United States Politics

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