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Rogue troops? Rogue war!

Published Jul 18, 2010 11:41 PM

Suddenly this July 13 the British media was filled with stories of an Afghan soldier or soldiers who opened fire on Britain’s Gurkha Rifles, killing three, two of them British nationals. Given the increase in NATO forces in Afghanistan with more combat, and especially with more U.S. troops in battle, there will undoubtedly be more such incidents in the coming months involving U.S. as well as other NATO troops.

The British and U.S. corporate media consistently referred to the Afghan or Afghans involved as “rogue” or “renegade” troops. These words distort completely what happened and can only mislead readers if they are not replaced.

Not that we, at this time, know the motives of the individual Afghans who carried out the attack. We do know that U.S. planes had just bombed and killed five allied Afghan troops. This “friendly fire” happens frequently. Perhaps the “friendly fire” was returned.

We know that U.S. planes and troops have killed thousands of Afghan civilians. The Pentagon calls this “collateral damage.” One war opponent has called it “collateral murder.” Perhaps the Afghan was avenging some of his civilian relatives.

Then there is the third possibility, that the Afghan involved is a patriot. He was fed up with Britain and the U.S. and Germany and the Netherlands and anyone else occupying his country. He grabbed some pay and got some military training. And then he blew the hell out of the occupation forces and ran to the resistance.

For the vast majority of Afghans, that is, those not part of the puppet regime of Hamid Karzai, it is the troops that remain loyal to the NATO allies that are the “renegades” and “rogues.” Those who revolt and join the resistance are patriots or heroes.

Once the above is understood, it is clear that the only way to minimize the outrageously high human and material costs of the war in Afghanistan — not to mention neighboring Pakistan and nearby Iraq — is to get all NATO and all U.S. troops out.

There are some opportunities for people in the U.S. to get active and mobilize to do just that.

The National Conference to Bring the Troops Home Now! will meet July 23-25 in Albany, N.Y., to discuss an action program to plan demonstrations demanding immediate and unconditional withdrawal of troops from that region.

Make sure that plank of the program is adopted and that the mobilization goes forward.

UAW President Bob King and Rev. Jesse Jackson have announced a march for “Jobs, Justice and Peace” for Aug. 28 in Detroit, the epicenter of the depression.

Make sure an immediate end to the Afghanistan invasion stays up front as you build this very progressive action.