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Nadia Zahel – Given Away as a Child Bride, Afghan Woman Describes 24 Years of Abuse

Spogmai was just 12 years old when she was separated from her parents and handed over to another family. But this was no ordinary arranged marriage. Instead, she was given to a man more than three times her age in order to settle a family feud. Her voice trembles as she recalls the day she entered a form of slavery. …

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PEPE ESCOBAR – Afghanistan; It’s the Heroin, Stupid

Here we go again. In yet another Pentagon precision strike, a residential building in Achin district of Nangarhar province was hit as a crowd welcomed home a tribal leader returning from the Hajj. At least 13 civilians were turned into «collateral damage». The Pentagon of course does not «discuss the details of counter-terror operations», but it’s «currently reviewing all materials …

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Alfred W. McCoy – How a Pink Flower Defeated the World’s Sole Superpower

After fighting the longest war in its history, the United States stands at the brink of defeat in Afghanistan. How can this be possible? How could the world’s sole superpower have battled continuously for 15 years, deploying 100,000 of its finest troops, sacrificing the lives of 2,200 of those soldiers, spending more than a trillion dollars on its military operations, lavishing a record hundred …

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Robert Fisk – Isis and the Taliban are brutally carving up modern Afghanistan

If anyone wants to understand the shame of Afghanistan – the yearly cull of civilians, the beheadings, the execution by single shots, the kidnapping of women – they have only to read the shocking UN report just published in Kabul. It is laced with fearful eyewitness descriptions of brutality. Isis features in its 87 pages with its usual depravity (in …

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Andrew Cockburn – A Special Relationship

One morning early in 1988, Ed McWilliams, a foreign-service officer posted to the American Embassy in Kabul, heard the thump of a massive explosion from somewhere on the other side of the city. It was more than eight years after the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, and the embassy was a tiny enclave with only a handful of diplomats. McWilliams, a …

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Martin Berger – ISIL Death Squads Dispatched to Afghanistan. Who is Behind Them?

The increase in the level of terrorist activities of ISIL in Afghanistan has recently been the topic of various reports being published in the international media. Along with the massacre of the local population which seems to be a trademark of this Islamist group it has recently entered in a direct confrontation with the Taliban. It’s now safe to assume …

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Ann Jones – Afghanistan “After” the American War

Ten months ago, on December 28, 2014, a ceremony in Kabul officially marked the conclusion of America’s very long war in Afghanistan. President Obama called that day “a milestone for our country.” After more than 13 years, he said, “our combat mission in Afghanistan is ending, and the longest war in American history is coming to a responsible conclusion.” That was then. …

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Jon Queall – ‘Endless War’ Continues as US Troops Re-Enter Combat Against Taliban in Kunduz

Two days after Taliban fighters launched a surprise attack and took control of the northern city of Kunduz, promises made by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani that his forces could quickly re-take the city have not been realized and reports on Wednesday reveal that U.S. Special Forces units are now on the ground engaging in the fight as new rounds of …

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Afghanistan’s changing of the guard: ISIS recruits in Taliban territory

By Nick Paton Walsh, CNN Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN)The flag is crude, handmade, but the message is clear — allegiance to ISIS in Afghanistan. And the timing — with America withdrawing, the Taliban fractured, young men disillusioned and angry — could not be worse. A group of fighters in Afghanistan agreed to be filmed by a CNN cameraman parading their ISIS …

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As Afghan Opium Production HIts All-Time High, ISIS Makes Billions

Since around 2003, when Afghanistan was raided by the US government, opium poppy cultivation and heroin production has risen exponentially. Prior to the US invasion, Afghanistan’s opium production had been nearly eradicated by the Taliban. In 2014, reports concluded that Afghani opium/heroin production is at an all-time high. The poppy fields, guarded by the US military at times, are the source of most of …