Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Afghanistan - worse than ever

United Nations report documents poverty and social misery in Afghanistan.

Joanne Laurier writes in www.wsws.org about Afghanistan:

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2005/mar2005/afgh-m02.shtml

Afghanistan ranks 173rd out of 178 countries in the United Nations 2004 Human Development Index.

Life expectancy today is approximately 44.5 years.

Only 25 percent of the population has access to clean drinking water.

Abduction and trafficking in children is now a rapidly growing threat, with the most common forms of trafficking being child prostitution, forced labor, slavery, servitude and the removal of body organs.

Only 14 percent of women are literate.

An estimated 10 million scattered throughout the country have been responsible for disabling hundreds of thousands of Afghans.

One in every three people is either a refugee or an “internally displaced person.”

A survey of women in Kabul found that 98 percent met the diagnostic criteria for PTSD, major depression or severe anxiety.

More than 61 percent of children are not going to school in at least nine provinces. In ten provinces, more than 80 percent of girls are not enrolled in school.

In July 1979, President Carter signed a directive providing clandestine assistance to the Islamic fundamentalist forces. This was six months before the USSR invaded.

Brzezinski in a 1998 interview explained, “We didn’t push the Russians to intervene, but we consciously increased the probability that they would.... Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap. You want me to regret that?”

Carter-Brzezinski and the Reagan administration, during the 1980s, promoted Islamic fundamentalism to undermine the Soviet Union.

The UN study points out that during “the phase of the Cold War that stretched between 1979 and 1989, the Mujahideen groups received about $7 billion in military and economic aid from the US and some other western countries.” In this same period, the war created 5 million Afghan refugees.

The years following the US invasion witnessed "the majority of Afghans living in heightened states of both fear and want.” This era has seen an expansion of narco-warlordism and the opium trade. It is estimated that in 2003, Afghanistan produced three-quarters of the world illicit opium, and officials warn that the country could become “a narco-terror state in the future.”

Since 1992, approximately 75 percent of the ancient artifacts belonging to the National Museum in Kabul have been smuggled out of the country.

The current Afghan reality: foreign imperialist occupation, political power in the hands of mafia-like warlords; unspeakable conditions for broad masses of the population.

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"What kind of “aid” is America giving to Iraq when they have destroyed 90% of Iraq’s infrastructure and not rebuilt it? Where is that $9 billion dollars that disappeared under Paul Bremer?" http://www.uruknet.info/?p=m10087&l=i&size=1&hd=0

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