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July 13, 2009
Obama wants investigation of 2001 Afghan massacre
President Obama has ordered his national security team to look into an apparent massacre of Taliban prisoners by an Afghan warlord back in 2001, according to Jake Tapper of ABC News:
"So what I've asked my national security team to do is to collect the facts for me that are known," the president said. "And we'll probably make a decision in terms of how to approach it once we have all the facts gathered up....There are responsibilities that all nations have even in war. And if it appears that our conduct in some way supported violations of the laws of war, then I think that, you know, we have to know about that."
A Saturday New York Times story reported that Bush administration officials obstructed requests for an investigation into the incident from the FBI, State Department, and other groups "because the warlord, Gen. Abdul Rashid Dostum, was on the payroll of the C.I.A. and his militia worked closely with United States Special Forces in 2001, several officials said. They said the United States also worried about undermining the American-supported government of President Hamid Karzai, in which General Dostum had served as a defense official."
Human rights groups applauded President Obama's remarks.
Of course they did. They are not responsible for the security and strength of the Afghan government. Apparently, Obama doesn't believe he is either.
Perhaps he should resign the presidency and become Emperor of Human Rights or something. As far as standing up for vital US interests, he is a joke.
Would it have been better to prosecute the warlord rather than protect him? In a perfect world, of course. But war is about making bad choices sometimes and Bush made the right one. Those who do not have the responsibility - or, like Obama, who refuse to accept responsibility - can get on their moral high horse and feel very good about themselves and their superior position above the rest of us cretins.
But risking the stability of the Afghan government in order to get human rights groups to praise us is a little too high a price considering all the blood and treasure we have expended in Afghanistan to bring stability to that country.