Afghanistan - Killing civilians
WORKERS, OCTOBER 2008 ISSUE
The US/British occupation forces in Afghanistan killed 577 civilians between January and August this year (up from 477 in the same period last year), 384 by bombing. Far more civilians than have been killed by them than by the national resistance forces.
A USAF air strike on 22 August killed 90 civilians, including 60 children, by the UN’s estimate. The US forces at first claimed that they had killed no civilians, and then later said that they had killed “only” seven civilians.
Civilian deaths caused by US/British air strikes tripled between 2006 and 2007. The occupying forces dropped 272 tonnes of bombs on the country in June and July, the same tonnage as in the whole of 2006.
The RAF’s oldest squadron, No. 1 Fighter Squadron, carried out 1,450 operations in nine-and-a-half months. Its Harrier planes are fitted with two cannons, each able to fire up to 1,850 rounds per minute, and with the Angle Rate Bombing System (ARBS).
They can drop standard “dumb” ordnance, including general purpose high-explosive bombs, napalm bombs, and cluster bomb units, as well as “smart” weapons such as laser-guided Maverick missiles.
The USA also carried out illegal attacks on Pakistani territory in the first two weeks of September, killing at least 60 Pakistani civilians.