During the past two weeks, the Sri Lanka armed forces have continuously denied employing artillery or heavy weapons in pounding away at trapped members of the Tamil Tigers. Today, it announced it was ending the use of artillery and air strikes which is remarkable given that they have never used such weapons in recent days. “Our security forces have been instructed to end the use of heavy caliber guns, combat aircraft and aerial weapons which could cause civilian casualties.” The United Nations claims that over 6,000 civilians have died since January due to the non-existent bombardment. A doctor working in the “no-fire zone” claims the area is still being bombed. Thangamutha Sathiyamoorthy says there have been nine air strikes in his vicinity during the day.
The Sri Lanka government yesterday rejected an offer by the Tamil Tigers for a cease fire arguing the offer was a “joke,” After decades of fighting and killing it is difficult for anyone to accept the Tamil Tiger claim they seek a cease fire for “humanitarian” reasons. They are whipped, they are defeated, and want a face saving way to surrender. Unfortunately, the struggle has lasted too long and they will not receive any consideration by the government.
Posted in Asia, Human Rights, Military, Multicultural, Peace, Politics, War, World News
Tagged air strikes, civilian deaths, Sri Lanka, surrender, Tamil Tigers
The history of guerrilla warfare provides abundant evidence that insurgents over time learn to adjust their tactics in response to attacks on their positions. Afghan militants are adapting to air attacks by scattering quickly after an attack on US or coalition forces. Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell noted insurgents “have a pretty good idea of how long it takes for close air support to arrive” which increasingly gets them to move away from the field of operation when they believe air attacks will soon be hitting them. The history of guerrilla warfare also provides evidence air attacks have minimal effectiveness against insurgents who do not fight in the manner of an organized army that confronts another force.
President Obama in his inaugural speech emphasized we would destroy terrorists. Unfortunately, the United States will not destroy the Taliban or al-Qaeda. Those groups will only be destroyed by people in Afghanistan who believe their government has earned their support.
Posted in Asia, Barack Obama, Human Rights, Multicultural, Muslims, Peace, Politics, United States, US Foreign Policy, War, World News
Tagged Afghanistan, air strikes, Taliban
After the initial American success in Afghanistan, the Tabliban was allowed to group and once again become a powerful force. During the past few years, this has resulted in continual American and coalition military strikes which frequently have resulted in deaths of innocent Afghan civilians. An ongoing problem is lack of sufficient ground forces which has necessitated reliance on air power. Last week in an operation against Taliban militants, American forces held off from firing at points during the battle to avoid killing Afghan civilians. Several days ago, uS forces killed 37 Afghan civilians and wounded 35 at a wedding party which has increased pressure on the part of the American military to be cautious when civilians are in the area.
The Taliban obviously is now using the presence of civilians in order to assist in their operations. They undoubtedly will use the cover of civilians in order to carry out operations. The apparent solution lies in having more ground forces in Afghanistan.
Senator John McCain and other Republican leaders have been arguing that Israel must be supported in its efforts to defend itself against possible Iranian attacks. There have been hints on the part of McCain about backing any Israel action, including possible air strikes. However, according to the British Guardian newspaper, President Bush bluntly told the Israel government he would not be supportive of any Israel military action against Iran. He told Israel that view would not be changed as long as he was president. Prime Minister Olmert supposedly discussed with Bush in May his nation’s thoughts about launching an air strike to destroy Iran’s nuclear capability.
The unconfirmed report about this Israel plan suggests even George Bush understands attacking Iran would result in disruption of shipping in the Gulf and the reality of an over extended American military mission in the region. Ironically, Bush when asked, has said the United States has never taken military action against Iran off the table.
George Bush lives in the world of rhetoric and sometimes his love of “tough language” leads to disastrous results such as in the flawed invasion of Iraq.
Posted in 2008 Elections, Barack Obama, Conservatives, Democrats, George Bush, Human Rights, Iran, Israel, Liberals, Military, Multicultural, Peace, Politics, Republicans, War, World News
Tagged air strikes, Bush, Iran, Israel