Afghanistan

On October 7, 2001 the United States and a “coalition of the willing” launched Operation Enduring Freedom in apparent response to the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States. The stated purpose was to destroy Al -Queda, the group that claimed responsibility for the attacks on the U.S. Additionally, the U.S wanted to remove the Taliban from power in Afghanistan and move it towards democracy. Within a few months of the war, the major leadership of Al-Queda moved out of Afghanistan into neighboring countries, such as Pakistan.

The situation in Afghanistan began to destabilize as Afghanis pressed back against the U.S backed government of Hamid Karzai as well as the U.S occupation of Afghanistan.

On December 1, 2010 President Barack Obama sent an additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan over 6 months. On June 22, 2011 President Obama announced a troop withdrawal of 10,000 US solders with an additional 23,000 to be withdrawn by the summer of 2012. The current troop level is over 100,000.

On October 7, 2010 Afghanistan became the longest war in American history.
The cost of the war in Afghanistan is crushing the U.S economy. A March 2011 Congressional Research Service report notes that: 1) following the Afghanistan surge announcement in 2009, Defense Department spending on Afghanistan has increased 50%, going from $4.4 billion to $6.7 billion a month. During that time, troop strength has gone from 44,000 to 84,000, and it is expected to be at 102,000 for fiscal year 2011; 2) The total operational cost for Afghanistan from the beginning of the conflict in 2001 through 2006 only slightly exceeds the amount spent in 2010 alone — $93.8 billion. The projected total cost relating to Afghanistan in fiscal year 2011 is expected to be $118.6 billion.
While the monetary cost of the war in Afghanistan is staggering, the cost in human life is an even bigger cost. According to www.icasulaties.org, which gets it’s data from the Department of Defense, as of May 2011:
The number of U.S dead in Afghanistan is 1,663 and counting
The number of coalition dead is 925 and counting
The number of Afghani dead is unknown
The number of U.S wounded is 11,191
The number of Afghani wounded is unknown

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Photos from CAPA’s Dean Baker Talk

Posted on by Roxane Assaf | Posted in Afghanistan, CAPA News, Iraq, Military Spending, The Issues, U.S. in Conflict | Leave a comment

Click here for the full photo collection of Dr. Dean Baker’s discussion Need or Greed: Who’s Responsible for the Global Economic Crisis?

Durbin Signed Letter to Obama – Thank You

Posted on by Roxane Assaf | Posted in Afghanistan, Military Spending, The Issues, U.S. in Conflict | Leave a comment

. Dear Senator Durbin, On behalf of Chicago Area Peace Action (affiliate of the national Peace Action — working for Peace since 1957), I wish to thank you for signing the letter to President Obama in “support of a transition …

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2012: Looking Forward to History

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by Peter Deccy, Peace Action Development Director The occupy movement has strengthened the demand for corporate and government accountability. It is a rare moment in history where crisis and opportunity combine to create the potential for sweeping social and political …

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Troops coming home from Iraq

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By years’ end, the US war and occupation of Iraq will be over. Opposing the war from the start, Peace Action participated in the February 2003 protest where tens of millions around the world voiced their opposition.  Peace Action continued its …

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Obama’s “Mission Accomplished”

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Troops and Prisons Move, Wars and Torture Never Ends by Ted Rall Most Americans–68 percent–oppose the war against Iraq, according to a November 2011 CNN poll. So it’s smart politics for President Obama to take credit for withdrawing U.S. troops. …

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Congressional Victory for a Quicker End to the Afghanistan War

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The Senate voted by voice vote this week in favor of Senator Jeff Merkley’s (D-OR) bipartisan amendment on behalf of 21 Senators to the National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2012 asking the President to to submit a plan …

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