News Release

U.S.’s Unreported War in Afghanistan

Doctors Without Borders reports that their hospital in “Kunduz [Afghanistan] was hit several times during sustained bombing by coalition forces” over the weekend. The group states: “Precise locations were communicated to all parties on multiple occasions over the past months, including most recently on 29 September.” General Director of Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) Christopher Stokes states: “MSF is disgusted by the recent statements coming from some Afghanistan government authorities justifying the attack on its hospital in Kunduz. These statements imply that Afghan and U.S. forces working together decided to raze to the ground a fully functioning hospital — with more than 180 staff and patients inside — because they claim that members of the Taliban were present.

“This amounts to an admission of a war crime.

“This utterly contradicts the initial attempts of the U.S. government to minimise the attack as ‘collateral damage’. There can be no justification for this abhorrent attack on our hospital that resulted in the deaths of MSF staff as they worked and patients as they lay in their beds.”

Glenn Greenwald notes: “One Day After Warning Russia of Civilian Casualties, the U.S. Bombs a Hospital in Afghanistan.”

On Twitter, see @accuracy Afghanistan list and #Kunduz hashtag.

Dr. HAKIM, hakimoryoung at rediffmail.com
Hakim, is a medical doctor who has provided humanitarian relief in Afghanistan for the last decade. He works with Afghan Peace Volunteers, an inter-ethnic group of young Afghans dedicated to building nonviolent alternatives to war. Dr. Hakim is the 2012 recipient of the International Pfeffer Peace Prize.

He appeared on “Democracy Now” this morning, stating that Afghans are not surprised, though they are definitely angry at the bombing. He stated that given mainstream media coverage, people in the U.S. might not even be aware that the U.S. government is continuing to bomb Afghanistan. See accuracy.org news release from November 2014: “Obama Secretly Extended Afghanistan War.”

KATHY KELLY, kathy at vcnv.org, @voiceinwild
Kelly is co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence. She is just recently back from Afghanistan. Also appearing on “Democracy Now,” Kelly called the U.S. government “the most formidable warlord in Afghanistan.” She talked of people at the Doctors Without Borders hospital seeing patients burning in their beds. She stated that given that Doctors Without Borders informed the U.S. military where the hospital was, it seems clear that the U.S. military knew that it was bombing a hospital and went ahead anyway.

See “VCNV Calls for Emergency Protest of Airstrike on Afghanistan Hospital.”

PHYLLIS BENNIS, pbennis at ips-dc.org
Bennis is a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies. Her most recent book is Understanding ISIS and the New Global War on Terror. She just wrote the piece “Bombing Hospitals All in a Day’s Work,” which states: “The destruction of the Doctors Without Borders (MSF) hospital in Kunduz, with 22 dead so far, including doctors, other staff and patients, capped a week that also saw the bombing of another hospital in Afghanistan, plus the U.S.-backed Saudi Arabian bombing of a wedding party in Yemen set up in tents far out in the desert, away from anything remotely military. … The Pentagon relied on its language of ‘collateral damage,’ trying once again to distance itself from any responsibility for this most recent atrocity in Afghanistan. But there is no distance. This is the direct and inevitable result of an air war waged by U.S. pilots flying U.S. planes dropping U.S. bombs on an impoverished and war-devastated country still immersed in the war that began 14 years ago this week.”