News Release

Afghanistan: * War Profits * Vietnam II * Crocodile Tears * U.S. Bombing


ANDREW COCKBURN,, @andrewmcockburn
Washington editor of Harper’s Magazine, Cockburn recently wrote the piece “How the U.S. military got rich from Afghanistan” for The Spectator. He is author of the soon to be released book The Spoils of War: Power, Profit and the American War Machine. He also wrote the piece “The Long Shadow of a Neocon” about Zalmay Khalilzad, architect of the Doha agreement with the Taliban “who originally set up the Afghan ‘government’ to fail.”

Professor of international law at the University of Illinois, Boyle said today: “The entire U.S. foreign policy and military establishment have proven themselves to be completely bankrupt. Not that they will learn any lessons from this. They learned nothing after the Vietnam War. Indeed, they learned the wrong lessons: ‘Shock and Awe’ as well as how to control the media.”

MATTHEW HOH,, @MatthewPHoh
Hoh resigned in protest from his State Department position in Afghanistan in 2009 over the escalation of the Afghan War by the Obama administration. He recently wrote the pieces “What critics of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan get wrong” for CNN and “A Cruel and Unjust Peace for Afghanistan” for Newsweek.

He said today: “With the Taliban taking power, primarily through deals with warlords in the government, we may now witness a significant reduction in the cycle of violence. Perhaps with violence coming to an end, or even just declining, Afghanistan can have a chance to rebuild and reconcile.

“For example, 70 percent of Afghans live on less than one dollar a day. … Now with the chance for a break in the cycle of violence, there may be an opportunity for reconstruction and reconciliation.

“This outcome was not inevitable. The only thing that made it so was the United States’ insistence on military victory through three presidents. Up until September 2018, the United States never once considered any negotiations with the Taliban that were not otherwise a call for the Taliban surrender. Donald Trump’s negotiations were, of course, conducted for his own political purposes and the aggrandizement of his ego. Through all of this the Afghan people have suffered, which is why ‘concern’ from politicians, pundits and media in the U.S. over the fate of the Afghans is hollow and hypocritical.” Hoh also raises issues regarding the nature of deal making between the Taliban and the U.S. government, issues surrounding the drug trade and how surveillance using Pegasus is being used in Afghanistan.

Mottern is with the group Ban Killer Drones, which just released a statement calling on the U.S. government to “immediately cease bombing Afghanistan to ensure the most peaceful transition in Afghanistan possible.

“The U.S. bombing campaign over the last several weeks has been enabled by the use of killer drones for direct attack and for guiding bombing by manned aircraft in what has been termed by the Biden Administration ‘over the horizon’ air assault to shore up the now evaporated Afghan government. …

“This latest use of drones comes after years of U.S. drone slaughter and terrorization in Afghanistan. According to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, as many as 10,000 Afghans may have been killed by U.S. drones since 2004, more people by far than killed by U.S. drones in any other country. …

“Ban Killer Drones is organizing, and encouraging others to organize, protests against further U.S. air attacks against Afghanistan at U.S. drone control centers and other military facilities on, or about, Friday, August 20, 2021.” Also, see the recent piece “Biden Must Call Off the B-52s Bombing Afghan Cities.”