The United States has butchered its way across the Middle East for two decades now, leaving a trail of innocent bodies, armed and empowered extremists, and open-air slave markets in its wake. The imperial state will continue to do so, safe and secure in the knowledge that the American public is utterly apathetic and uncaring about the lives of anyone who does not live in the United States and thus there is no political force in America willing to hold them accountable for their actions.
That is the only conclusion we can draw from the news that the U.S. government will not be imposing any disciplinary action on anyone for the murders of ten Afghan civilians — including seven children — by drone strike on August 29th. The Pentagon even had the gall to say that they “stood by the intel” that lead to the strike, even though they admitted there were no ISIS-K fighters killed, thus proving their “intelligence” entirely wrong.
BREAKING: Gen. McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, to announce no ISIS-K fighters killed in U.S. drone strike in Kabul Aug 29. 10 civilians killed, including 7 children in Toyota. No disciplinary action expected, officials say. US military stands by intel leading to strike.
— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) September 17, 2021
This news confirms the New York Times investigation that discovered there was no ISIS bomb at all in the reprisal bombing that followed the alleged ISIS-K bombings at the Kabul airport. Instead, the Biden administration murdered an Afghan man who worked for a U.S. aid organization, along with nine members of his family — including seven kids, all aged 7 or younger.
The target of the strike was identified as Zemari Ahmadi, 43, who had worked as an electrical engineer for a California-based aid group called Nutrition and Education International since 2006. That day, he went to meet with his boss to drop off his laptop, picked up breakfast, drove his co-workers to a police station to get permission to distribute food to refugees, filled water containers for his family, dropped off his coworkers, and then went home. Because one of the locations was suspected to be — but not confirmed — an ISIS safehouse, the U.S. military marked him for death.
“…the people who rode with Mr. Ahmadi that day said that what the military interpreted as a series of suspicious moves was simply a normal day at work” reports the Times. The military claims that they only saw a single adult male greeting Ahmadi as he got home — but relatives say that “several of his children and his brothers’ children” went out to see him.
Then the drone fired its missile, brutally killing them all. The Times’ examiners found no evidence of a secondary explosion, exposing Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Gen. Milley’s public assertion as a lie.
It’s fairly clear that the military acted without bothering to confirm the identities of the people involved, the strength of the “intelligence” that tied Ahmadi to the “suspected” ISIS safe house, or whether there were any civilians around before firing a Hellfire missile into the middle of a packed residential neighborhood.
This is a war crime, through and through, and the Biden administration openly lied to the American people about it because they needed an eye for an eye and didn’t have any better options because we never bothered building up the networks of human intelligence that a place like Afghanistan requires at any point during the past two decades.
“I have no visibility into who the bad guys are…we are woefully deficient in human intelligence,” complained Donald Rumsfeld in 2003, according to cables obtained by the Washington Post. It would appear that we still are, and seven kids are dead because of it.
The American military and the public have shown an appalling disregard for the lives of innocents on every battlefield that the War on Terror has been waged; now we must bear the burden of having accomplished nothing but prove to the world that we are exactly what they always said we were.
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.