Ten Things You Can Do to Oppose the War in Afghanistan
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The war in Afghanistan is a quagmire bordering on a catastrophe. With a current price tag of $2 billion a month, this drawn-out conflict took the lives of 155 American soldiers and 2,118 Afghan civilians last year--the bloodiest year of the war to date. Western airstrikes alone killed 522 civilians, fueling hostility toward the United States and causing more Afghans to join and support the Taliban insurgency that has spread into Pakistan. President Obama has escalated our military presence by committing an additional 17,000 US troops and 4,000 trainers to work with Afghan security forces. Where is the public outcry? The Nation and Z.P. Heller, editorial director of Brave New Films, have put together a list of things you can do to oppose the war.
1 Watch parts one and two of Brave New Films' documentary Rethink Afghanistan, which explores many fundamental questions.
2 Read up on the war. Anand Gopal's coverage for the Christian Science Monitor has been insightful; see also Ann Jones's Kabul in Winter and articles like Gilles Dorronsoro's "Focus and Exit: An Alternative Strategy for the Afghan War". The Nation 's own Robert Dreyfuss has more " For Your Reading Pleasure."
3 Check out the coalition of bloggers and activists seeking nonmilitary alternatives to escalation at Get Afghanistan Right.
4 Demand Congressional oversight hearings. It is Congress's duty to challenge policy-makers and inform the public about everything from the overall mission to the efficiency of military agencies. Sign a petition calling on Senator John Kerry and Representative Howard Berman to hold hearings immediately.
ZP Heller is the editorial director of Brave New Films. He has written for The American Prospect, AlterNet, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Huffington Post, covering everything from politics to pop culture.