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Karzai: US should reduce military operations

WASHINGTON — Afghan President Hamid Karzai has said that the United States must reduce the visibility and intensity of its military operations in Afghanistan, The Washington Post reported. The United States should end special operations forces raids that aggravate Afghans and could exacerbate the Taliban insurgency, Karzai said in an…

Kucinich to force Congress to vote on withdrawing from Afghanistan after news Obama will extend war to 2014

President Obama said he would begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan in 2011. Now, the Administration says 2011 is still in play, but has begun floating the year 2014 as a more “reasonable” date for the war’s end. One Congressional Democrat is not happy. Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) blasted President Barack…

Poll: Majority of Afghans back talks with Taliban

Poll: 83 percent of Afghans back the government’s efforts to negotiate with the Taliban An overwhelming majority of Afghans support the government’s efforts to negotiate peace with Taliban insurgents, according to a poll released Tuesday that ranks insecurity as the top concern among citizens, followed by unemployment and corruption. Some…

Blackwater in Afghanistan ‘dissolved,’ Kabul claims

Afghanistan has formally banned eight foreign private security firms, including the controversial company formerly called Blackwater, a spokesman for President Hamid Karzai said on Sunday. The Afghan government announced in August that it was giving security firms working in Afghanistan four months to cease operations, potentially hitting hard efforts by…

UN suppressed report on US, Soviet ‘atrocities’ in Afghanistan: report

GENEVA — The United Nations buried a report into rights violations in Afghanistan between 1978 and 2001 that accused Soviets, Islamists and US forces of “atrocities”, a Swiss newspaper said on Saturday. The revelations emerged a day after the UN published a hotly contested report into crimes committed by armed…

House panel denies aid to Afghanistan

A key House panel voted Wednesday to cut off almost $4 billion in aid to the government of Afghanistan pending an investigation into charges that Afghan officials are blocking corruption probes and huge amounts of foreign aid is being stolen. The bipartisan move by the foreign aid appropriations subcommittee comes…

Taliban suicide squad target Afghan ‘peace talks’

A Taliban suicide squad armed with rockets on Wednesday targeted an Afghan peace conference hosted by President Hamid Karzai that is seeking consensus on how to end nearly nine years of war. As Karzai addressed 1,600 delegates and Western diplomats at the “peace jirga,” rockets exploded and gunfire erupted near…

Soldiers thrashed comrade for reporting drug abuse, civilian deaths

A US soldier who blew the whistle on his comrades over possible drug use and the deaths of three civilians in southern Afghanistan suffered a severe beating in retaliation, officials said Tuesday. The soldier was beaten after telling authorities about illicit drugs and then, while recovering in hospital, recounted his…

UK plans rapid withdrawal from Afghanistan

British defense secretary: ‘We are not a global policeman’ Senior British officials, including new Foreign Secretary William Hague, arrived in Afghanistan Saturday with a warning that Britain wants to withdraw its troops as soon as possible. Hague, Defense Secretary Liam Fox and International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell are set to…

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