What really astounded me were his opening comments when he made the following statement “We are engaged in a contest of wills. Our enemies are doing all that they can to undermine the confidence of the Afghan people. In so doing, they are killing and maiming innocent Afghan civilians on a daily basis.”
From my perspective I would like to remind Gen. Petraeus of the genocide being inflicted on the people of Afghanistan by US and coalition forces as a direct result of their extensive use of weapons that contain uranium components. I would also add to this the fact that the US military themselves used Tactical Nuclear Weapons also with extremely dire consequences.
Lets just reflect for one moment on this very thoughtless action (or should I say well planned action) inflicted on not only the people of Afghanistan but also in all the downwind countries and beyond. I would like to refresh your memory on the implications and usage of these weapons.
When they use Depleted Uranium the highly radioactive nano particles immediately drift around the region, cross international border and eventually the world.
We also know they used Tactical Nuclear Weapons such as the B61 bomb (Dial up low yield) on locations in the Tora Bora Mountains in North East Afghanistan. This is a war crime of gigantic proportions and will have far reaching effects on millions of people in a totally indiscriminate way.
So what are the implications for a dial up nuclear weapon? The B61 -11: Tactical or strategic bomb has multiple yield options presumably ranging from 10 Kt (and possibly lower yields) to 340 Kt. What does this mean as far as casualties and the environment?
A single warhead, set on 1 kiloton, will penetrate into the ground and spread 60,000 tons of radioactive debris. The radioactive fallout will spread throughout the planet and lead to many more casualties. Pentagon models project, in the 1 kiloton scenario that 3 million people would die, mostly in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. 35 million people would also be exposed to cancer causing radiation. If the same warhead is set to 100 kilotons, it will emit 1.5 million tons of radioactive debris into the atmosphere. The fatalities from that scenario are unknown but obviously would be of gigantic proportions.
There have been many concerns about the US current policy with weapons that appears to be hidden from the public eye. The current push by Obama on the NPT plan is totally flawed and is hiding the hidden agenda on the extensive use of weapons containing Depleted Uranium components, other “High Tech Dirty Bombs” and Tactical Nuclear Weapons as required. Many of these weapons are sent to existing areas of conflict for testing, followed up by experts who then carry out an analysis on the impact of such weapons in the region concerned.
The Brookings Institute in the US made the following statement:
The United States is now fielding a new tactical and strategic nuclear military capability that has already been used to threaten a non-nuclear country. This new capability was certified without nuclear testing, using an existing surrogate testing facility with capabilities much less than those under construction and planned. The weapon was developed and deployed in secret, without public and congressional debate, contrary to domestic and international assurances that no new nuclear weapons were being developed. Other new or "modified" nuclear weapons, earth-penetrating and otherwise, are planned.
One can also clearly see the US totally supporting Israel who now has a totally out of control research programme an also has a very impressive stockpile of WMD’s. It has (like its partner in crime the US) been testing its weapons on Lebanon (2006) and more recently in Gaza 2008/9. The following is an extract from the Brookings Institute and clearly shows that the US is truly playing games with such countries as Iran and North Korea when it is itself violating the very principles of the NPT:
• The B61-11's unique earth-penetrating characteristics, not to mention its wide range of yields, allow it to threaten otherwise indestructible targets from the air and are its raison d'etre. The new weapon is uniquely useful from a military perspective? And hence provocative from an arms control and nonproliferation perspective.
• A central and expressed purpose of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) has always been to arrest the further evolution of the world's nuclear arsenals. This modified weapon? Certified without nuclear testing and deployed after signing the CTBT? Undercuts that treaty and could provide political cover to countries which have their own unsatisfied nuclear ambitions.
• Earth-penetrating weapons, deployed by the Clinton administration in the post-Cold-War era, were rejected for deployment by Presidents Carter, Reagan, and Bush. What is the new reason to deploy these weapons? What are the new targets? What is known about the B61-11 strongly suggests that its rushed development has been motivated by a desire to target one or more non-nuclear-weapon states.
• On July 8, 1996, the International Court of Justice ruled that any use or threat of use of nuclear weapons, other than possibly in the case where the very survival of a nation was threatened, was against international law. After this landmark decision, it is difficult to legally support the deployment, let alone the new development, of any tactical nuclear weapon? Especially one whose development appears to have been motivated by a desire to target non-nuclear weapon states.
• In order to gain support for indefinite extension of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the United States repeatedly assured the world during April and May of 1995 that it would not continue "vertical proliferation." Yet during these same months the Department of Energy (DOE) was seeking, and obtaining, approval for a weapon modification with significant new military utility.
• Development of this weapon was approved outside the regular budget process and without congressional debate, by means of secret letters to key committee chairmen, raising constitutional questions.
• In their efforts to gain acceptance for the advanced surrogate testing of the "science-based stockpile stewardship" program, Clinton administration officials and nuclear weapons laboratory spokespersons have for years assured a skeptical public that no new nuclear weapons would be developed or built. At the very same time, secret development of this provocative weapon was being requested by the Department of Defense (DoD) and carried out by the DOE in complete secrecy.
• The DOE claims that this weapon, with its unique new military characteristics, is not a new weapon but rather a minor modification of an existing weapon. Lab spokespersons admit that other "modifications" are now in the works or planned for the future. What are these?
• The current B61 modification allegedly involves only the nonnuclear components of the bomb (notwithstanding months of effort at Los Alamos National Laboratory [LANL]). Yet the labs maintain that in the future, modifications to the nuclear components will definitely be made and certified as well, using computer simulations and surrogate tests. Since none of the modifications can be explosively proof-tested, why won't "confidence" in the reliability of U.S. nuclear weapons decrease under these plans? Unfortunately, allowing such changes to be made will likely result, over time, in calls for the resumption of nuclear testing.
• Continued modification of the U.S. stockpile is expensive. While this particular project may or may not be expensive in itself, the DOE's $3 billion construction plans for new nuclear test simulators, along with its planned Cold-War-level nuclear weapons program funding, is largely driven by the proclaimed "need" to maintain the capability to develop new warheads and bombs. These DOE expenses, it must be said, are just a fraction of the $26 billion spent annually by the U.S. to field and maintain its nuclear arsenal.
• For these reasons and others, new or "modified" nuclear weapons like the B61-11 are not in the security interests of the United States. On the contrary, it is in our manifest interest to get rid of such weapons as fast as possible and to end their further legitimization, as the former commander of the United States Strategic Command, General George Lee Butler, and others have recently said.
When one adds to this the fact that since the start of 2009 the US Military has been secretly double up on its stockpiles in other countries such as Israel and Guam etc. This is the new policy for the US Military which they call “Lilly Pad Bases.” and benefits the US in so many ways:
• Because this is classified as an internal US military transfer from one US base to another no clearance for such weapons need to pass though Congress.
• The new policy allows the host country to use the stockpile for its own security as required
• Forms a strategic staging post for other actions such as a possible attack on Iran
Back to Gen. Petraeus speech…….he went on to say “No tactic is beneath the insurgents; indeed, they use unwitting children to carry out attacks, they repeatedly kill innocent civilians, and they frequently seek to create situations that will result in injury to Afghan citizens.”
“In answer, we must demonstrate to the people and to the Taliban that Afghan and ISAF forces are here to safeguard the Afghan people, and that we are in this to win. That is our clear objective.”
Perhaps I would ask Petraeus how he compares the above two sentences to the fact that as a direct result of US actions by using these WMD they have killed the genetics of Afghanistan with long term suffering that is beyond words. This evil depopulation plan has gone well beyond the battlefields of the Balkans, Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Somalia and Yemen with equally devastating implications on the entire world. These wars are nothing to do with bringing democracy to the countries concerned but rather all about controlling the world’s resources and their associated lucrative markets.
The only reason our street remain unsafe is because of our greed and determination to grab someone else’s resources or alternatively to stop them from obtaining their own world markets that remain outside of US/Western control. This is the true face of war and the sooner all western forces return to their native countries the sooner terrorism will cease. These wars cost all our respective countries trillions of dollars and it is obvious that if they did not exist our economy would be much stronger.
Peter Eyre – Middle East Consultant - 6th July 2010