legacy of US intervention: Taliban, KLA…


Jan Slakov

Dear RN list,     May 5

In recent RN postings, the topic of the aftermath of the Kosovo bombing has
come up: 
"it is not too early to start worrying 
about human rights and freedom of opinion in post-war 
Kosovo, Serbia and Montenegro -- since the KLA leaders 
can be assumed not to have had extensive training in 
the area of democratic institutions and rights."

And Bill Blum's Quick Political Scholastic Aptitude Test (QPSAT) (in the
"Keep Up the Protests" posting of May 2) is a witty reminder that (despite
all the stupid proaganda) bombing does not bring democracy.... (Bill sent us
a revised list of countries visited by US bombs; see end of this message.)

Afghanistan provides us with a horrible example of what the aftermeth of war
can bring. 

I do not have references for this myself, but Richard once wrote to me that
the US has been very responsible for creating the current terrible situation
in Afghanistan. Apparently, the US created the Afghan war as a way to
destablize the USSR (this has recently been confirmed by State Dept
statements). This was done by arming fundamentalist groups who then took
over Afghanistan and are now ruining it.

As we know, the KLA seems to be about as "lovely" as the Taliban; how many
times will we end up "helping out" groups like the Taliban and the KLA in
the name of freedom, democracy and human rights before we find a way to end
our complicity in the killing?

all the best, jan
Date: Wed, 05 May 1999 16:06:52 +1000
From: Lynette Dumble <•••@••.•••>

"In the 90 percent of Afghanistan ruled by the Taliban, women are banned from 
working outside the home and girls are not allowed to go to school. Health 
care is segregated and there are complaints of insufficient doctors, beds 
and medicines for women".

While the world rightfuly mourns the situation in Kosova, Afghani women 
living in terror under the shadow of the Taliban receive scant attention.
Please read on, Lynette.
Reflection of RAWA protest rally on Black Day of April 28 in the media

By Kathy Gannon
Wednesday, April 28, 1999
Associated Press

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AP) -- Carrying placards denouncing Afghanistan's 
Taliban rulers, Afghan women marched on U.N. offices in Pakistan today to 
demand world attention for their plight.
"We get only silence from the international community ... we need help,'' 
said Huma Saeed, a spokesman for the protesters, who were led by the 
Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan.
In a one-page letter, the group criticized the international community and 
media, saying their central Asian country had received only sporadic 
attention while the plight of refugees from Kosovo had received extensive 
"Is it because European blood is (more important) than the blood of the 
people of Afghanistan?'' said the letter, which was delivered to the U. N. 
In the 90 percent of Afghanistan ruled by the Taliban, women are banned from 
working outside the home and girls are not allowed to go to school. Health 
care is segregated and there are complaints of insufficient doctors, beds 
and medicines for women.
The association says the anti-Taliban alliance, made up of Islamic groups 
who ruled Kabul from 1992 until the Taliban took over in 1996, are not much 
Association members have received numerous threats from Afghans who identify 
themselves as Taliban.
In December in northwestern Pakistan, men saying they were Taliban 
threatened to break the legs of women who went ahead with an anti-Taliban 
march. The march was canceled.
The women today also criticized U.N. peace efforts that offer radical 
Islamic groups a share of power.
"We demand to know why the United Nations and other world bodies insist on 
delivering the destiny of our people into the hands of fundamentalist 
murderers,'' the statement said.
However, the United Nations has had very little success at negotiating a 
peaceful end to the protracted and bitter conflict.
Like previous U.N.-negotiated accords, the latest agreement reached in 
Turkmenistan in March quickly fell apart and the two sides returned to the 
A U.N. team from New York is in Pakistan to determine how civilian monitors 
being sent to Afghanistan can assess human rights.

The Frontier Post, April 29, 1999
ISLAMABAD (PR) - Afghan women and children Wednesday staged a demonstration 
here against human rights abuses in Afghanistan. 

The human rights group "Revolutionary Association of Women of Afghanistan" 
(RAWA) organised the rally in front of the United Nations office. 
The demonstrators were holding banners and placards, inscribed with slogans 
against Taliban and demanding of the United Nations to take note of 
violation of women rights in Afghanistan. 

Huma Saeed, spokeswoman for the RAWA, handed over a memorandum to a UN 
official Muhammad Maqbool, who assured the demonstrators that the memorandum 
would be sent to the Secretary General Kofi Annan. The demonstrators were 
standing in front of the UN office for 30 minutes and later peacefully 
The RAWA leader regretted that the world community has for the most part 
remained a spectator to the multitude of atrocities committed in Afghanistan 
and no country or world authority has undertaken any  meaningful step 
against the fundamentalists in the interest of ending the human rights 
tragedy in this country.
The memorandum reads, "according to Amnesty International, Afghanistan 
continues to remain "to world's largest forgotten tragedy". World media has 
lashed itself and world opinion into a frenzy over Kosovo, but the brutally 
savage massacre of ten of thousands of innocent people by the 
fundamentalists in Kabul alone did not
even get into the news. Is it because European blood is thicker than the 
blood of the people of Afghanistan? Has providence decreed that our people 
should everlastingly swim in an ocean of tears and blood of and be doomed to 
an existence of agony as far prey of world bullies and their indigenous 
It adds, "The United Nations and other world forums sleep the sleep of the 
just when every now and then they manage to bring the fundamentalists 
together and tether them to the same peg as a sign of their 'concord' and 
laying aside of their irreconcilable self-interests".
Please visit our web site to view the photos and a report of the procession

~  Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA)
~  Mailing Address:
                           P.O.Box 374,
                           Quetta, Pakistan
~  ICQ UIN #: 2717083
~  Mobile #: 0092-300-551638
~  E-mail: •••@••.•••
~  Home Page: http://www.rawa.org 
From: •••@••.•••
Date: Sun, 2 May 1999 17:44:35 EDT
Subject: revised list of countries bombed by US

United States Bombings -- The Awful Record

There appears to be something about launching bombs or missiles onto towns 
and people that appeals to American military and political leaders.  Here's 
the record of countries they've bombarded since the end of World War II ...

China 1945-46
Korea and China 1950-53
Guatemala 1954
Indonesia 1958
Cuba 1959-60
Guatemala 1960
Congo 1964
Peru 1965
Laos 1964-73
Vietnam 1961-73
Cambodia 1969-70
Guatemala 1967-69
Grenada 1983 
Lebanon 1983, 1984
Libya 1986
El Salvador 1980s
Nicaragua 1980s
Panama 1989
Iraq 1991-99 
Kuwait 1991 
Somalia 1993
Bosnia 1994, 1995
Sudan 1998
Afghanistan 1998
Yugoslavia 1999

Bill Blum
Author: Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II
(notice the capital "A" and the underline _ )