Sunday, May 10, 2009

Cries of US and its allies on civilian casualties

By S. Akurugoda

(May 10, Melbourne, Sri Lanka Guardian) While killing hundreds of civilians in Afghanistan and in Iraq, cries of United States and its allies on Sri Lanka (who has “Zero Civilian Death Policy” when fighting terrorism) remind us the story of a tricking thief who cried “thief, thief catch a thief”, just to avert the attention and as a part of a ploy set to escape from the crowd around him.

As per the media reports, US is planning to rush hundreds of millions of dollars to Pakistan help fight the Taliban and al-Qaida. Last week, US-led air strikes killed hundreds of Afghans, including women and children and destroyed houses. All we hear is that the Pentagon launched a joint investigation into what appeared to be one of the heaviest civilian death tolls at the hands of coalition forces. That is the end of the story.

In Pakistan’s Swat clashes, according to the information minister for the North West Frontier Province Mian Iftikhar Hussain, up to 500,000 people were expected to flee the valley. Swat is already struggling to house half a million people driven there by fighting from other northwestern regions over the last year. According to a AFP news item appeared in The Age, Austrlaian News paper, the United States and other Western nations, in contrary to what they preach to us, have opposed the peace deal with the Swat Taliban, ‘warning that other deals had broken down and given the militants time to regroup’.

A US bombing raid in August last year at Azizabad resulted in 90 civilian deaths. The US originally said no civilians died. It later issued a directive intended to reduce the chances of similar mass civilian deaths. That is the end of another story.

It is interesting to note that none of the so-called human rights organisations (who are vociferous when the Government of Sri Lanka initiates retaliatory or rescue operations) has asked the US and its allies to ‘Stop Killing Civilians’, ‘Arrange Cease Fire’ and ‘Start Peace Talks' immediately or to fulfil the 'Legitimate Aspirations' of the Afghanistan people and so on so forth.

Apart from their ability to dismissals of any crime committed by themselves out rightly, these super powers are champions of justifying and regretting after committing such crimes.

The US military said, little over two weeks ago, it was “deeply saddened” by a deadly raid it launched in Iraq that Baghdad said violated a landmark security pact with Washington.

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