Will Obama Bring an End to Open Season on Afghan Civilians?
I am still smiling – and at times teary – at the thought that we have elected Barack Obama. The joy of Grant Park – and it was a night of astonishing joy – is an important sign to all of us that change is possible. Walking up Michigan Avenue afterwards with Marnix Peeters of Het Laatse Nieuws in Belgium, we paused to remember ’68 and think on the distance we have come - and how this night might change America's role in the world.
People near Kandahar in Afghanistan were also celebrating last week, celebrating a wedding – and once again, US air strikes brought death and despair rather than joy to these innocents. 37 died, 35 more were wounded. Nine “insurgents” were also killed. This time, the Pentagon and the Afghan government seem to agree on what happened – "insurgents" used the civilians as human shields during a battle with US forces:
The U.S. military said Thursday that civilians attempted to leave during the battle in Shah Wali Kott, "but the insurgents forced them to remain as they continued to fire on the ANSF (Afghan National Security Forces) and Coalition forces along the highway."