Rethink Afghan: “I Don’t Want This Kind Of Life”

This video from Robert Greenwald shows civilian casualties in Afghanistan. Some may find this video disturbing.

Here’s what Greenwald says about this part of his film series.

Well-reasoned foreign policy results in more housing and jobs, better health care and education. When that policy consists of applying a military solution to a political problem, however, it results in death, destruction, and suffering. I witnessed the latter during my recent trip to Afghanistan–the devastating consequences of U.S. airstrikes on thousands of innocent civilians.

Crossposted @ the Progressive Electorate and the the Daily Kos  

Greenwald continued

The footage you are about to see is poignant, heart-wrenching, and often a direct result of U.S. foreign policy. It came from a combination of filmmakers: Nazir, a man who tracked me down through Facebook, met me at the Kabul airport, and showed me segments of his exclusive look inside Afghan refugee camps; a stringer we hired who was arrested by the Taliban in filming a bombing victim in Kandahar; and my own interviews while in Kabul. Together, we bring you Rethink Afghanistan: Civilian Casualties.

A powerful video like this needs little comment. We know how painful civilian casualties are, that’s why we’re in this war. We owe it to the civilians to actually have a plan for Afghanistan. What does it mean to make sure Afghanistan is not a training ground for terrorists? That sounds like permanent occupation. And as the video shows it’s a negative cycle.

Bill Moyers has an excellent interview about Af/Pak. It certainly is more upbeat than the fearmongering we’ve been hearing about the Taliban taking over Islamabad. They’d get control of the nukes! Or not… Here’s Bill Moyers with Juan Cole and Shahan Mufti.

(Playtime 30 minutes)

Here’s a little bit about what’s in that second video.

Shahan Mufti

Pakistanis, a lot of them, still see the Taliban as a fringe movement, which they are. The numbers say that. And a fringe movement which is able to wreak a lot of havoc. … But this threat of the state failing – I think Pakistanis, especially, say that this talk of Pakistan being a failed state, ‘We’ve heard that. That’s been around for 50 years, 60 years.’ And nobody in that country takes that too seriously.

Juan Cole

Washington is alarmed at the spread of the Taliban in the northwest frontier province because it has implications for the security of southern Afghanistan, and therefore for US troops and NATO troops in Afghanistan. And so, from their point of view, this is a big crisis. They don’t want more safe havens for the Taliban in Afghanistan who are killing US troops. And they were upset with the Pakistani elite for not taking this problem more seriously. And, I think, sort of saying that Pakistan is unstable, or it’s about to fall, or the nukes are in danger, all of this sort of thing, is a signal to Islamabad that you had better get serious about this, because it matters to us. So this is Washington strong arming Pakistan.

And the full transcript


  1. for the Greenwald video!

  2. here and that other place.

    Thanks for spreading the word.


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