The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

Afghanistan Escalation Creep


The New York Times reports: "President Obama will send an
additional 17,000 American troops to Afghanistan this spring and summer
in the first major military move of his presidency, White House
officials said on Tuesday. The increase would come on top of 36,000
American troops already there, making for an increase of nearly 50

Professor of history at New York University, Young is the author of books including Iraq and the Lessons of Vietnam: Or, How Not to Learn From the Past and most recently, Bombing Civilians: A 20th Century History.
She said today: "The uncertainty around Afghan policy seems to be
spreading, yet, the administration just announced an increase of
troops. This is one of the ways events seem to echo U.S. escalation in
the Vietnam War. Instead of saying: this is just not working, a
military solution cannot succeed, nor is there a viable political
solution the U.S. can engineer, the administration seems to have chosen
to add troops incrementally and drone attacks exponentially." Young
recently appeared on Bill Moyers Journal.

JOE VOLK, via Caroline Anderson
Executive secretary of the Friends Committee on National Legislation,
which sent a letter to Obama on the Afghanistan escalation on
Wednesday, Volk said today: "Bombing civilians and wielding the barrel
of a gun will only help extremists recruit more fighters. It failed in
Iraq, and it will fail in Afghanistan. What we need is diplomacy,
development, and cooperation with China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, India,
and other important regional actors."
More Information

The AP reported Tuesday:
"The number of Afghan civilians killed in armed conflict rose 40
percent last year to a record 2,118 people, the U.N. said in a new
report Tuesday."

A nationwide consortium, the Institute for Public Accuracy (IPA) represents an unprecedented effort to bring other voices to the mass-media table often dominated by a few major think tanks. IPA works to broaden public discourse in mainstream media, while building communication with alternative media outlets and grassroots activists.