Afghan war prompts new questions, fresh protests
By Susan C. Ingram
With a spike in the death of
For U.S. Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin,
“Our main problem is al-Qaida, primarily located in
Cardin said current troop levels reflect the
“That’s not our responsibility,” he said.
Cardin said he has been strongly in favor of the
“That’s their job,” he said.
According to the Department of Defense, since the beginning of the war, 889
Max Obuszewski, a Baltimore peace activist, has been involved in many actions protesting the
In September he sent a letter on behalf of the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance seeking a meeting with President Obama on withdrawing all
“We are greatly concerned that the people of
It urged a meeting to discuss the administration’s exit strategy from
Obuszewski cites the billions of dollars being spent on the war, while the
In addition to troop withdrawal, the group called for the closure of all military bases, the prison at Bagram Air Base, and for an end to the bombing of
“We need an economic revival in this country, not a war of choice in
A better use of resources would be clean energy programs and universal health care in the
With no response from Obama, Obuszewski joined about 60 others in a protest outside the White House last month, carrying a poster-sized copy of the letter.
Obuszewski said the protesters were all arrested.
“They didn’t entertain any of our concerns about reading the letter, and then they arrested us,” he said. “They used force to get us off that site.”
Over the weekend, Obama asked the Pentagon for a range of alternatives on troop deployment to
“We’re against any increase in troops. We want the troops to come home,” Obuszewski said. “We realize if we say that, they won’t be coming home tomorrow. We want a safe withdrawal.”
Obuszewski likened the conflict to the Vietnam War.
“You had the same type of situation in
Daniel Ellsberg was a military analyst during the Vietnam War and author of “The Pentagon Papers,” which helped turn public opinion against that war.
In an Oct. 25 interview on the Real News Network (trnn.org), Ellsberg echoed Obuszewski’s feelings.
“No victory lies ahead in
Ellsberg said that Afghan troops will not likely ever be dedicated to fighting against other Afghans for a foreign power, namely the
“And we are a foreign power in
In September, a former Pentagon and State Department official, Matthew Hoh, resigned in protest of administration
Hoh said in his resignation letter that during his five months of service in
“I fail to see the value or the worth in continued