Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
Opinion Editorials, October 2009
Obama Awarded the Nobel Prize While US Wars Continue in the Muslim World
By Abid Mustafa
ccun.org, October 14, 2009
No sooner had Obama received the prize for peace he convened his war council to discuss how best to wage war in Afghanistan. “The president had a robust conversation about the security and political challenges in Afghanistan and the options for building a strategic approach going forward," an administration official told AFP. One of the measures Obama will endorse is to increase the number of US soldiers deployed in Afghanistan. This will be on top of the huge number of private security contractors that already work for the Pentagon and are responsible for much of the mayhem and the slaughter of innocent Afghan civilians.
Obama’s war council is also deliberating options to expand America’s war in Pakistan. American officials are openly debating whether to launch missile attacks on Quetta— Baluchistan’s largest city. If the nod is given this will mark a new phase in America’s war against Pakistan and means that fortification of the US embassy in Islamabad—one of the largest in the Muslim world— will be used as the nerve centre to plan and orchestrate the killing of Muslims. Additionally, America has mandated two private US security firms Blackwater and InterRisk to hound and terrorize Pakistanis.
In Iraq, Obama’s so called draw down policy masks a similar sinister plan that relies heavily on private security contractors to strengthen America’s military presence in the country and to compensate for the withdrawal of US troops. The private security contractors operate with complete impunity, spilling Muslim blood and humiliating ordinary Iraqis.
According to new statistics released by the Pentagon this year, there has
been a 23% increase in the number of private security contractors working
for the Department of Defense in Iraq in the second quarter of 2009 . The
figure for the same period in Afghanistan is a 29% increase. Overall,
contractors (armed and unarmed) now make up approximately 50% of the
“total force in Centcom AOR [Area of Responsibility].” This means there are
a 242,657 contractors working on these two US wars under the leadership of
commander in chief Barack Obama. This exceeds the present number of
forces in Iraq and Afghanistan which amounts to 132,610 and 68,197
Against Iran, Obama is not advocating peace, but urging crippling
sanctions that will surely hurt ordinary Iranians and incubate resentment
against America for decades to come. Likewise Obama’s continued support for
autocratic rulers of the Muslim world has convinced many Muslims that Obama
is no different to his predecessor George Bush.
Abid Mustafa is a political commentator who specializes in Muslim affairs.
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