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Why Aren't U.S. Troops Already At Work Clearing Unexploded Bombs From Afghan Villages?

December 16, 2001

It's bad enough that we have bombed villages of impoverished Afghans who had nothing to do with Al Qaeda and never did us any harm.  What's worse is that after our "accidental" strikes on these villages -- which killed hundreds, if not thousands of Afghan civilians -- we seem to be doing nothing to assist those we have so grievously harmed.

I'm not even talking here about the obvious right thing to do: provide emergency medical aid, long-term rehabilitative care, and financial support for the men, women, children and families our bombs and missiles have injured.

An even simpler, less expensive action would be to ensure that further maimings and deaths do not result from unexploded munitions from our recent airstrikes.  Specially trained U.S. troops should already be fanning out into the Afghan countryside to villages identified in numerous press reports as containing unexploded cluster bombs and even larger munitions.  The military must also investigate on its own all the other areas it bombed to ascertain if there are any unexploded bombs in those locations which must be removed.

Such work is not risk-free, as shown by a recent incident at the Kandahar airport in which three Marines were injured when a mine went off as they worked to clear an area of mines, booby traps and unexploded ordnance.

Still, George Bush never gets tired of repeating that we are not at war with the Afghan people.  If that's really the case, let's remove the deadly remnants of our war from their villages.

This was a selection from The Daily Diatribe

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