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JFP 8/16: US Afghan war deaths under Obama now equal to those under Bush

Just Foreign Policy News
August 16, 2010

Today, By U.S. Deaths, Afghanistan is Obama's War
According to the data tallied by the website icasualties.org, which is regularly cited in the news media, as of today 575 U.S. soldiers had died in the Afghanistan war since Obama took office - the same number that died in the war under President Bush. News media often report on such landmarks; they should report on this one, and press secretary Robert Gibbs should be asked to comment on it.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/by-us-deaths-as-of-today_b_683441.html

Academics, authors and analysts urge France to repay debt to Haiti
In an open letter published today in the French national newspaper Libération, more than 90 leading academics, authors and other prominent figures from around the world are publicly calling on the French government to reimburse the 90 million gold francs France extorted from Haitians following Haiti's independence.
http://www.diplomatiegov.info/openletter.en.html

Bacevich: Washington Rules
Andrew Bacevich's new book, "Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War," is a call for Americans to reject the Washington consensus for permanent war, and to demand instead that America "come home."
Get the book
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/buywashingtonrules
September 24th: JFP "Virtual Brown Bag" with Andrew Bacevich
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/bacevichtalk

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Today, U.S. Afghan War Deaths Under Obama Same as Bush

575: That's how many U.S. soldiers have lost their lives in the Afghanistan war since Barack Obama became President at noon on January 20, 2009, according to the icasualties.org website, which tracks U.S. soldiers' deaths using reports received from the Department of Defense - and which is widely cited in the media as a source of information on U.S. deaths.

According to the same website, 575 is also the number of U.S. soldiers who lost their lives in the Afghanistan war during the Presidency of George W. Bush.

Therefore, total U.S. deaths in Afghanistan have doubled in Afghanistan under President Obama, and when the next U.S. soldier is reported dead, the majority of U.S. deaths in Afghanistan will have occurred under President Obama.

This grim landmark should be reported in the media, and White House reporters should ask Robert Gibbs to comment on it. It is quite relevant to Gibbs' implicit attempt to marginalize critics of the war in Afghanistan by claiming that they wouldn't be satisfied with anything less than the abolition of the Pentagon. The majority of Americans - including the overwhelming majority of Democrats, and at least 60% of House Democrats - are deeply skeptical of the Administration's Afghanistan policy not because they are knee-jerk pacifists - obviously they are not - but because the human and financial cost of the war is rising, we have nothing to show for the increased cost, and the Administration has not articulated a clear plan to reach the endgame; indeed, Administration officials, led by General Petraeus, have just launched a public relations campaign to undermine the substantial drawdown in troops next summer that Democratic leaders in Congress, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi, have said that they expect.

U.S. Deaths in Afghanistan, 2001-2010 (table as web page)

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US Deaths in Afghanistan, 2001-2010

This table(view as web page) (download excel spreadsheet) shows deaths of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan by year and month since 2001, according to the icasualties.org website, as of Monday, August 16, 2010. The table also shows that as of August 16, 2010, 575 US deaths have been recorded since President Obama took office, equal to the 575 that were recorded under President Bush.

JFP 8/13: UN Appeals for Pakistan Aid; India faces Kashmir "Intifada"

Just Foreign Policy News
August 13, 2010

Obama: Prioritize Pakistan Flood Relief Over Afghan War
The government of Pakistan has urgently asked the U.S. and other supplies to rescue victims of the catastrophic floods in Pakistan. U.S. military officials say there is a trade-off: we have helicopters, but they are busy fighting the war in Afghanistan. The U.S. is providing some supplies, but Pakistan is facing catastrophe. Urge President Obama to prioritize Pakistan flood relief over escalating the war in Afghanistan.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/pakistanfloods

Background: Helicopters for War, But Not Flood Relief?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/obamas-pakistan-katrina-h_b_678755.html

Oxfam America: Flood Relief and Recovery Efforts in Pakistan
Oxfam USA is taking donations for Pakistan flood relief.
http://bit.ly/99t99n

Bacevich: Washington Rules
Andrew Bacevich's new book, "Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War," is a call for Americans to reject the Washington consensus for permanent war, and to demand instead that America "come home."
Get the book
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/buywashingtonrules
September 24th: JFP "Virtual Brown Bag" with Andrew Bacevich
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/bacevichtalk

Mark Weisbrot: Rohter Strikes Out Yet Again on South of the Border

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JFP 8/12: Pakistan flood aid not enough; officials try to minimize Afghan drawdown

Just Foreign Policy News
August 12, 2010

Obama: Prioritize Pakistan Flood Relief Over Afghan War
The government of Pakistan has urgently asked the U.S. and other supplies to rescue victims of the catastrophic floods in Pakistan. U.S. military officials say there is a trade-off: we have helicopters, but they are busy fighting the war in Afghanistan. Urge President Obama to prioritize Pakistan flood relief over escalating the war in Afghanistan.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/pakistanfloods

Background: Helicopters for War, But Not Flood Relief?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/obamas-pakistan-katrina-h_b_678755.html

National Education Association Protests IMF Pressure on Teachers in Jamaica
The National Education Association (3.2 million members) sent a letter of protest to the U.S. Treasury Department over reports pressure from the International Monetary Fund was causing the Jamaican government to violate contracts with Jamaican teachers.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/node/671

Bacevich: Washington Rules
Andrew Bacevich's new book, "Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War," is a call for Americans to reject the Washington consensus for permanent war, and to demand instead that America "come home."
Get the book
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/buywashingtonrules
September 24th: JFP "Virtual Brown Bag" with Andrew Bacevich

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National Education Association Protests IMF Pressure on Teachers in Jamaica

The National Education Association (3.2 million members) sent a letter of protest to the U.S. Treasury Department over reports pressure from the International Monetary Fund was causing the Jamaican government to violate contracts with Jamaican teachers. Text below; the PDF is here.

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August 10, 2010

 

Timothy F. Geithner

Secretary, Department of the Treasury 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, D.C. 20220

 

Re: IMF and Jamaican Teachers Association

 

 

Dear Secretary Geithner:

 

 

The National Education Association (NEA) would like to express our

concern about reports that pressure from the International Monetary

Fund (IMF) is causing violations of fairly negotiated agreements

between Jamaican Teachers Association and the Government of Jamaica.

We respectfully request that you look into this matter.

 

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Helicopters for War, But Not Flood Relief?

"You never want a serious crisis to go to waste," Rahm Emanuel said, correctly, in November 2008, referring to the economic crisis, and that fact that it created political opportunities to advance long-needed reforms.

But if the White House does not prominently, quickly and decisively bring all assets to bear in response to the flood crisis in Pakistan, it will be letting a serious crisis go to waste. It will be passing up an opportunity to show the Muslim world that the United States cares more about saving Muslim lives than taking them away. It will be passing up a unique opportunity to reframe and de-escalate the conflict in Afghanistan.

Yesterday, the Washington Post reported ("Fearing unrest, Pakistan seeks more U.S. flood aid"):

 

Pakistan wants the United States to supply immediately dozens more helicopters and significantly more money and supplies to help deal with the widespread flooding that has affected at least 14 million people there, senior Pakistani officials said Monday.

The U.S. has helicopters in the region. But:

 

A senior U.S. military official said transfer of additional helicopters, which are in short supply in Afghanistan, would require a political decision in Washington. "Do they exist in the region? Yes," he said. "Are they available? No."

A "political decision in Washington" means a decision by President Obama. That senior U.S. military official is exactly right. The decision to allocate more resources to flood relief isn't a decision for the military, and it would be absurd to blame the military for whatever decisions are made, because they are political decisions by the White House.

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JFP 8/10: Afghan Deaths Increase; Pakistan Pleads for US Helicopters for Flood Relief

Just Foreign Policy News
August 10, 2010

Obama vs. Obama on Endless Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan
A video produced by Ben Craw of Huffington Post juxtaposes Senator Obama and President Obama on the war in Iraq and the war in Afghanistan.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/10/obama-vs-obama-on-afghani_n_676836.html

Bacevich: Washington Rules
Andrew Bacevich's new book, "Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War," is a call for Americans to reject the Washington consensus for permanent war, and to demand instead that America "come home."

Get the book
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/buywashingtonrules

September 24th: JFP "Virtual Brown Bag" with Andrew Bacevich
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/bacevichtalk

Oliver Stone's "South of the Border," scheduled screenings:
http://southoftheborderdoc.com/in-theatres/

Help Support Our Work
Your donation helps us educate Americans and create opportunities to advocate for a just foreign policy.
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Summary:
U.S./Top News

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JFP 8/9: 43% say Afghan war was a mistake; TIRC countries resist anti-Iran front

Just Foreign Policy News
August 9, 2010

How Many Iraqis Did We "Liberate" from Life on Earth?
Attempts to estimate the Iraqi death toll from the U.S. invasion support the conclusion that hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have died as a result of the war, which we can now state with high confidence. This suggests a test for anyone who claims that demands for occupying Afghanistan or bombing Iran have anything to do with human liberation: if they can't be bothered to know or won't acknowledge that the war killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, their claims of "humanitarian" motivation should be ignored.
http://www.truth-out.org/how-many-iraqis-did-we-liberate-from-life-earth62112

South of the Border, scheduled screenings:
http://southoftheborderdoc.com/in-theatres/

Help Support Our Work
Your donation helps us educate Americans and create opportunities to advocate for a just foreign policy.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/donate

Summary:
U.S./Top News
1) 43% of Americans say it was a mistake to go to war in Afghanistan, USA Today reports.

2) Venezuela says it won't accept Larry Palmer as US Ambassador following reports of his criticisms of the Venezuelan government and military, Christopher Toothaker reports for AP. [Toothaker downplays what Palmer said, but notes that the criticism was unusually strong for an ambassador assigned to Venezuela - JFP.] The Senate has not yet acted to confirm Palmer for the post.

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Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total
2001 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 3 7
2002 10 1 9 4 1