Progressive Politics Research and Commentary by Janette Rainwater
 
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     Minus Button which collapses the expandable menu Afghanistan, "Terrorism," and Blowback
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Afghanistan, "Terrorism" and Blowback: A Chronology
by
Janette Rainwater, Ph.D.

                                p19

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 21

October 5, 2001    The White House announces that congressional briefings involving classified information will be restricted to only eight members of Congress. The administration alleges that there have been unauthorized leaks to the media. [Strong criticism from Congress and the public forced the White House to rescind the memo and include all members of the Intelligence Committees in the briefings.]

October 7, 2001    Air Strikes begin on Afghanistan: 31 targets are hit during the night hours by US and British forces targeting "military aircraft, runways, missile launchers and 'terrorist' training camps." A spokesman for the Northern Alliance reports that the Taliban's radar system was "completely destroyed." The Taliban says there are 20 casualties, including women, children and elderly people. The UN World Food program is forced to suspend its food convoys. The ration packs dropped by two US planes as the "humanitarian" part of the mission represent only a minute fraction of that supplied by the convoys. [World Food program officials have said that a quarter of the Afghan population will be dependent on food aid by the end of the year--- 5.5 million people. There are only a few weeks left to get food convoys into the remote areas before they are blocked by the winter snows. The people also need seeds to plant the winter wheat which will feed them next year. Chris Buckley, an aid officer: " The real Afghanistan is one where 85 per cent of the population are subsistence farmers. Most Afghans don't have newspapers, television sets or radios. They will not have heard of the World Trade Centre or the Pentagon, and most will have no idea that a group of zealots has attacked these icons of western civilisation. There isn't even a postal service. Now, in these isolated villages, families are down to their last weeks of food and already men, women and children in the refugee camps are dying of cholera and malnutrition. I have spoken to orphans with swollen bellies. I have spoken to men who have no money to hire trucks to escape the drought and make it to the camps. I have spoken to families who say they will wait in their villages for death.... To punish innocent Afghans would be immoral," Z Magazine, 14 September 2001.]

October 8, 2001    Tom Ridge starts his first day at work as head of the Office of Homeland Security, a new cabinet position announced by Bush in his address to Congress on September 20. This department will have responsibility for overseeing all aspects of domestic security in response to the September 11 attacks. [A former congressman and two-term governor of Pennsylvania, Ridge won his first term on a get-tough-on-crime platform, using Willie Horton-type ads against his opponent. Once in office, he had many anti-crime bills passed, several of which were declared unconstitutional. He believes all juveniles (and not just murderers) should be tried as adults and do adult time in prison. His state police roughed up death penalty protesters and made pre-emptive strikes against headquarters of the protesters at the Philadelphia Republican Convention in 2000. Civil libertarians, beware! ]

October 9, 2001    The Times of India reveals that Lt. General Mahmud Ahmed was recently fired as head of Pakistan's ISI because of evidence (provided by India) of his links to Mohammed Atta, one of the alleged suicide bombers of the World Trade Center on September 11th. [At the general's instance Ahmad Umar Sheikh had wired $100,000 to Atta. Sheikh was one of the three militants who hijacked an Indian Airlines plane in 1999. They were allowed to go free in exchange for the safe release of the plane's passengers. James Taranto, Wall Street Journal, October 10, 2001.]

October 10, 2001    More Blowback on the Right to Know: The five major US TV networks accede to the "request" of the White House to not air live, unedited tapes of Usama bin Laden or his aides (as they had on October 7 and 9) on the rationale that al-Qaida might be using the transmissions to send coded messages to terrorist "sleepers".

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This site was last changed November 28, 2001. It was created on March 20, 1997.

© Janette Rainwater 1997-2001

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