Friday, 28 April 2017

Afghanistan – Bring the troops home

As of October 28, 2009, there have been 1,428 coalition deaths in Afghanistan as part of ongoing coalition operations (Operation Enduring Freedom and International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).

During the first five years of the war, the vast majority of coalition deaths were American, but between 2006 and 2009, a significant proportion were amongst other nations, particularly the United Kingdom and Canada which have been assigned responsibility for the flashpoint provinces of Helmand and Kandahar, respectively. This is due to the fact that in 2006, ISAF expanded its jurisdiction to the southern regions of Afghanistan which were previously under the direct authority of the U.S. military.

With 446 Operation Enduring Freedom and ISAF deaths so far, 2009, has been the deadliest year for foreign military troops since the U.S. invasion in 2001, continuing the trend that has occurred every year since 2003.

As of October 26, 2009, the British forces have suffered 223 fatalities and 790 wounded in action, another 1,951 have suffered from disease or non-battle injuries. The vast majority of fatalities have taken place since the redeployment of British forces to the Taliban stronghold of Helmand province in 2006, as only 5 men died between April 2002 and early March 2006. 192 fatalities were a result of hostile action, while 31 are known to have died either as a result of illness, non-combat injuries or accidents, or have not yet officially been assigned a cause of death pending the outcome of an investigation.

What are these deaths for? For defending a fake, corrupt puppet regime which now wants to have a one-candidate election run-off after election fraud of heroic proportions?

Certainly we have not brought peace and prosperity. This country has some of the world’s worst health indicators, with an average life expectancy of 44.

About one in five children dies before their fifth birthday and it has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world (one in 50 births).

Most people lack access to safe drinking water and sanitary facilities. Disease, malnutrition and poverty are widespread and millions of people are dependent on food aid.

British Troops in Afghanistan are brave and professional but they are being asked to fight a losing battle. This is not our war. Bring our troops home. Then perhaps aid could be sent in to address drinking water, food shortages and health care. As long as our troops are there as occupiers, the Afghans cannot rebuild their country and the Taliban will continue to murder innocents with their suicide bombings. The only solution I see, is to stop occupying the country and then offer aid to those in need.

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