News Release

Ten Years of Afghan War: * Protests * Costs * From Afghanistan

DAVID ROVICS, drovics at gmail.com
Friday, October 7 is the tenth anniversary of the United States’ invasion of Afghanistan. “Occupation” protests begin today at Freedom Plaza in Washington, D.C. opposing wars and corporate power:  livestream rotating from different cities.

Singer-songwriter Rovics will be preforming at the launch of the Freedom Plaza protests today. At a preliminary event Wednesday night, he performed his songs:
“Bullies”
“You Don’t Fool Me”

JO COMERFORD, jo at nationalpriorities.org
Comerford is executive director of the National Priorities Project, which has just released “10 Years After 9/11,” a set of analyses and tools focused on the financial costs of a decade at war. The group finds that the U.S. has spent $7.6 trillion on “security-related” budget items such as Homeland Security, nuclear weapons, war and the base-line military budget since 2001.

Comerford said today: “The latest budget battle in Congress occurred over $3.6 billion in emergency storm relief funding for FEMA. If members of Congress needed to find budget savings to offset FEMA spending, they could have considered war costs. FY2011 spending on the Iraq war ($47.4 billion) alone would pay for all the public disaster funding that FEMA disbursed from Fiscal Year 1999 through Fiscal Year 2010.”

REENA, SONALI KOLHATKAR, also via Sana Shuja, press at afghanwomensmission.org,
Currently in Afghanistan and available for a limited number of interviews, Reena is a member of Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan, which warned of dire consequences of the U.S. invasion at the time.

Kolhatkar is author of Bleeding Afghanistan: Washington, Warlords, and the Propaganda of Silence and is co-director of the Afghan Women’s Mission, which is organizing a live video stream discussion with Reena and a live audience in Los Angeles on Friday at 7 p.m. PT / 10 p.m. ET.

Reena said today: “Ten years of war has not made Afghanistan safer for anybody except the fundamentalist warlords in the Afghan government, and the Taliban.” She urges Americans to “call for the withdrawal of the troops, as the military presence has not helped Afghan people in any way.”