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7 Oct, 2011 18:00

War in Afghanistan: a crime against humanity?

The decade-long war waged by the US and its allies in Afghanistan does not seem to be coming to an end. With tremendous civilian casualties and a ruined economy and institutions, the justification for the war seems to be dubious and ill-considered.

The war against Afghanistan was an act of illegal aggression by the United States and NATO despite its being presented as a response to 9/11, believes Michel Chossudovsky, editor at the Center for Research on Globalization.However, “Afghanistan as a country was not behind the attack,” he underlines.The legacy of the war which started in 2001 is a wrecked economy and institutions, lack of public health and mass unemployment, he adds.Chossudovsky doubts that it is possible to plan a large-scale war in Central Asia in just four weeks.“The war on Afghanistan was on the drawing board of the Pentagon. Iit was in advanced stages of planning before 9/11,” he claims. “And 9/11 provided the pretext and justification for waging a war on a sovereign country, an impoverished country in Central Asia,” he says, labeling it as a fabricated pretext.“This war still stands out as violation of international law and a crime against humanity,” he claims.On the eve of the 10th anniversary of the invasion of Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, former commander of coalition forces in Afghanistan, has harshly criticized the US campaign in Afghanistan, claiming that allied forces are only “50 per cent of the way” towards achieving their goals.The retired general said "We didn't know enough and we still don't know enough. Most of us, me included, had a very superficial understanding of the situation and history, and we had a frighteningly simplistic view of recent history, the last 50 years." According to Michel Chossudovsky “the statement by General McChrystal is a cynical statement.” He notes that it somehow suggests that this is a humanitarian operation to come to the rescue of the people of Afghanistan, while all the evidence demonstrates quite the opposite.