Unprecedented surge in US airstrikes

Sunday, 17 September 2017 03:27 Written by  Heart of Asia Read 65 times

US forces have conducted as many as 555 airstrikes only in a month in Afghanistan, the highest number of air raids in a single month since 2012. In the meantime, The New York Times has claimed in a report that besides the Pentagon, the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has also requested an authorization from the US government to run its own drone program in Afghanistan. The recent figures of US airstrikes and reports on CIA’s request for permission to launch drone strikes comes as the security situation in Afghanistan is an all-time grave. 

 

During the announcement of complete withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan by Former US President Barrack Obama, one estimation was that the Afghan war would not end, but rather its nature would change, meaning that the United States would still remain a party to the Afghan conflict even after the pullout of its forces from Afghanistan, but no American troops would be killed or wounded as they would use their airpower to hit their targets on the ground. Economically, this was a very cheap option for Americans which at the same time could also stifle the reactions of American people against US casualties in Afghanistan. However, this option has grave consequences for Afghan people. 

As estimated, the United States has increase its troop level in Afghanistan. While the US considers the use of airpower against militants as the most effective weapon, it poses serious threat to the lives of civilians especially as there is a guerrilla-style war in Afghanistan. Furthermore, US forces don’t exercise the necessary caution during air operations which mostly result in civilian casualties, an issue that rather strengthens the militants. 

By the same token, the last decade and a half showed that bombs and killings cannot put an end to the war. All sides have  reached the conclusion that Afghan conflict doesn’t have a military solution, yet killing and use of force remain a priority for the US. Realizing the sensitivity of the situation, the Afghan government should no longer allow arbitrary US activities, and should use all its existing resources to find peaceful solution to the conflict.