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“Forces of Outrage: Best Military in the World, Really?”

An astute piece by John LaForge in CounterPunch:
“In response to regular reports of atrocities by US soldiers, drone controllers, pilots and interrogators, the White House routinely tries to help. Every president promises to honor our armed forces and says ours is the finest military of all, etc. At last years Veterans Day ceremony, president fill-in-the-blank boasted, ‘America is and always will be the greatest nation on Earth.’ This Nov. 11th, Mr. Obama said that since 9/11 the US is ‘defining one of the greatest generations of military service this country has ever produced,’ and, of course,'[W]e have the best-led, best-trained, best-equipped military in the world.’

Really? On Veterans Day 2001, one headline blared: American Soldier is Convicted of Killing Afghan Civilians for Sport. US aggression, occupation, torture of prisoners, massacres, drone attacks, offshore penal colonies and sexual assaults against our own service members, take the luster from our official self-image of exceptionality.

In a bold invitation, Human Rights Watch has called on 154 parties to the UN Convention on Torture to bring charges against US officials under explicit language in the treaty, ratified by the US in 1994. The treaty requires such action when reputable allegations are not prosecuted by the accused governments, and ours doesnt need any more evidence, just some of which may be found in these mainstream US media stories:

US Practiced Torture after 9/11, Nonpartisan Review Concludes (Apr. 16, 2013)

Afghans Say an American Tortured Civilians (May 13, 2013)

CIA Drones Kill Civilians in Pakistan (Mar. 18, 2011)

GI Kills 16 Afghans, Including 9 Children, in Attacks on Homes (Mar. 12, 2012)

Libya Effort is Called Violation of War Act (May 26, 2011)

NATO and Afghan forces killed 310 civilians over the same period, mostly from airstrikes, the UN reports (Aug. 3, 2009)

100,000 Iraqis killed since U.S. invasion analysis says (Oct. 29, 2004)

U.N. Chief Ignites Firestorm by Calling Iraq War Illegal (Sep. 17, 2004);

Iraq Says Blast in Baghdad Kills Dozens of Civilians: U.S. Blamed (Mar. 29, 2003)

U.S. Presses for Total Exemption from War Crimes Court (Oct. 9, 2002)

Pentagon Says U.S. Airstrike Killed Women and Children (Mar. 13, 2002)

Bombing Necessary Despite Toll on Civilians, U.S. Envoy Says (Jan. 9, 2002);

U.S. helicopters fire on women, children in Somalia (Sep. 10, 1993)

US forces buried enemy forces alive (Sep. 13, 1991)

200,000 died in Gulf War, and counting (May 30, 1991)

The Militarys Dirty War on Women

Atrocities against people of occupied or targeted countries arent the only ones accumulating. According to a July 2012 report by the Pentagon, over 25,000 sexual assaults occurred in fiscal year 2012, a 37 percent increase from FY 2011. About ‘500 men and women were assaulted each week last year,’ USA Today reported July 25. See: ‘Reports of Military Sexual Assault Rise Sharply,’ NY Times, Nov. 7; & ‘Sexual Assaults in Military Raise Alarm: 26,000 Cases Last Year, May 7, 2013.'”
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John LaForge is co-director of Nukewatcha nuclear watchdog and environmental justice group in Wisconsinand edits their quarterly newsletter.

Posted by Steve on December 23, 2013 at 6:47 am | Permalink

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