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OCTOBER 3, 2003
4:20 PM
CONTACT:  Institute for Public Accuracy
Sam Husseini (202) 347-0020
David Zupan (541) 484-9167
Two Years Later in Afghanistan: Enduring Freedom?


Co-director of Afghan Women's Mission, Kolhatkar said today: "On the second anniversary of the U.S. bombing of Afghanistan this October 7, the status of the first target in the 'War on Terror' is nothing for Bush and friends to write home about. To date, none of the warlords has ever been held accountable for terrorizing the Afghan population.... The lessons learned have not been how best to stabilize a country to pave the way for democracy, but rather on how best to create havoc through purposeful negligence and criminal government actors -- with the prime losers being ordinary war-weary civilians...."


Ingalls is co-director of Afghan Women's Mission, and a staff scientist at the California Institute of Technology. He has scrutinized the United States' $1.2 billion "reconstruction package" for Afghanistan. He said today: "While the Bush administration brags about its liberation of Afghanistan and the financial aid it is sending, the $1.2 billion aid package is more about public relations and impressing the world community ... [and] catapulting U.S.-backed interim President Hamid Karzai into the permanent presidency in next year's election."

ANNE BRODSKY, brodsky@umbc.ed,

Brodsky is author of With All Our Strength: The Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan and assistant professor of psychology and women's studies at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She said today: "Having recently returned from a month in Afghanistan and in Pakistan, where millions of Afghan refugees still fear returning to their homeland, it is clear to me that our program of U.S. foreign policy there is not turning out well.... Crime is on the rise and criminal warlords are terrorizing people countrywide; voices in favor of freedom, democracy and human rights ... are being kept underground through threats, arrest, and violence. Harassment, intimidation, kidnaping, and rape make many girls and women fearful to leave their homes...."


Professor of economics at the University of New Hampshire and author of "Blown Away: The Myth and Reality of Precision Bombing in Afghanistan," Herold has documented the civilian deaths from U.S. bombs during "Operation Enduring Freedom" in Afghanistan. His latest article is "Empty Hat: Foreign Investors Shun Karzai's Afghanistan." He said today: "No major foreign equity investment ... in Afghanistan has been made, notwithstanding Karzai's frantic travels abroad seeking to woo investors.... In addition, the investments made cater exclusively to the urban upper-middle classes ... and do little to garner mass support and political stability."


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