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Gosh it’s good to know that the “free world” has such staunch allies in the war on “terror” who are willing to dispossess innocent multitudes in the name of victory. A fine application of Americans’ tax dollars, and of course all aboveboard and sacrosanct in the funhouse mirror of the post-9/11 world. Don’t expect the war crimes tribunals to convene around this event any time soon.
From The Guardian:
Demolished by the Pakistan army: the frontier village punished for harbouring the Taliban
A fading photo tossed on an empty bed is all that remains of the interrupted lives in Spinkai, a desolate Pakistani village that has endured the wrath of the army’s “collective punishment”.
An estimated 200,000 villagers have been displaced since the Pakistani army attacked the mountain redoubt of Baitullah Mehsud, the leader of the Pakistani Taliban and a suspect in the assassination of Benazir Bhutto four months ago.
Four months later the villagers are forbidden from returning home. Their wheat is rotting in the fields. But Pakistani commanders insist they have been merciful in their application of “collective punishment” – a practice invented by the British who demarcated the tribal areas over a century ago.
In March the CIA director, Michael Hayden, warned that the lawless area presented a “clear and present danger” to the west, and was the likely source of any future attack on America. On Sunday the new prime minister, Yousaf Raza Gilani, met President George Bush on the fringes of a conference in Egypt to discuss the situation.
The US is bankrolling the operations in North and South Waziristan, giving at least $5.5bn (about £2.8bn) in military assistance since 2002.