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    The protester realizes the ina..., 2003-02-16 00:00:00 | Main | Panic: the new terrorism. Tod..., 2003-02-17 00:00:00

    A little debate waged about this between Kevin Thurman and Andy Knapp, in which it looks like Kev gets the point across in Knapp's comments:

      However, the substance of the debate ... if Bush requested the money in his budget ... why is the House's conference committee report stating this: Despite the lack of a budget request from the Administration, the Conference Report provides $295 million in humanitarian assistance for Afghanistan. This money is separate from AID money, and the rest of the budget requests that you keep mentioning. And before you start arguing that he did request it, the aide that is being quoted in the budget summary's everyone keeps linking to are not humanitarian aid, but foriegn aid, a completely different money that is given to foreign governments. As for how these two men disagree, I am not sure yet, but I will get to the bottom of it.

    The other issue at hand is how we're supposed to rebuild a country where aid workers are being attacked, and where they likely won't be staying if we invade Iraq: "In Kandahar, most relief groups have begun to draw down their staffs and develop contingency plans. Since almost all expect the violence to increase if the United States attacks Iraq, the talk is often of possible evacuation." If we fuck Iraq we fuck Afghanistan. We need a total re-alignment of US policy - and that doesn't mean just a better, less-dope ridden propaganda war involving moustacheless pictures of Saddam - and the first place to re-align it is, since we're entangled there already, Afghanistan. If we cannot reverse growing anti-US sentiment there and be seen as a benevolent force I don't see how we'll do it in Iraq. I don't even know if it's possible, I don't think anybody does, but there's no way invading Iraq is going to help.

    Some better news.

:: posted by buermann @ 2003-02-17 00:00:00 CST | link

      The whole Afghan situation is a sorry state of affairs. We are trying to save them from terrorists, and they don't want to be saved, and in the meantime our soldiers are ending up in bodybags and American heroes are going to jail for saving lives and the press is just reporting packs and packs of lies about the whole darn thing. This is a sickening state of affairs. WHAT EXACTLY are American Green Berets doing being held as Prisoners of War by the Afghan government? Who's side is Karzai on anyway?
      take a look at www.superpatriots.us for some very disturbing news and pictures from Afghanistan.

    posted by alanG @ 2005-05-22 10:30:17 | link

      Feedback is better late than never, glad to hear from you.

      I haven't heard anything about American GIs being held by the Afghan government, and can't dig up anything from google news on a brief search. There are plenty of Afghanis held by the US government in Afghanistan, on the other hand, and I expect feelings among Afghanis are similar to yours upon such news.

      Otherwise: the press reporting is full of packs of lies, our soldiers are ending up in bodybags, and regardless of who we're supposed to be saving them from they may not want saving. Karzai should be on Afghanistan's and its people's side, and I wonder which side he's on, too.

    posted by buermann @ 2005-05-22 22:31:41 | link

      RE: www.superpatriots.us, Jack Idema & Co.

      I completely accept the plausibility of their working as either private contractors or blackhats for the US government, and that they may have been sold up the river, smeared, or discounted by plausible deniability.

      If Idema&Co are not currently serving as members of the armed forces, on the other hand, they are, by our Administration's own definition, "illegal combatants", and as such are not POWs. So far as I understand anybody's definition of the things everybody ought to be afforded protection against inhuman/degrading treatment and/or torture. The government of Afghanistan may not understand that much better than our government, and that's a matter of some concern.

      If otherwise the Afghani government has wrongfully convicted a US citizen, which is really the crux of the matter, given their government's recent and US-guided installment I would wonder what the hell they're doing to Afghani citizens, and isn't the USG in a unique position to do something about it? Justice for all, I believe is the phrase.

      Or perhaps Idema is guilty of what he's been accused and he ought to be left to the Afghani authorities, maybe the ICC. They could be extradited, we could request it, I don't know if we have.

      The USG has no particular jurisdiction in Afghanistan outside whatever it wants to take, whenever it wants to. If it could, I imagine it would. It's certainly doing everything it can to keep US personell out of trials for far more terrible crimes elsewhere. So really in the end is, assuming they work for the USG, why is it hanging these particular guys out to dry and what's so wrong about it if they are?

    posted by buermann @ 2005-05-22 23:18:20 | link

    go ahead, express that vague notion

    your turing test:

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