The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Obama Expands Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan

Mar 23, 2009

Barack Obama and his military advisors announced they are discussing expanding the war into Pakistan, not only Pakistan's tribal areas but also into the city of Quetta in the province of Baluchistan. The U.S. claims Taliban insurgents have fled Afghanistan to Quetta. The military is discussing not only using drones to conduct missile strikes there, but also sending CIA and Special Operations forces into the region. In other words, the U.S. war on Afghanistan and Pakistan is going into overdrive.

The U.S. military has also been using engineering units to build up permanent bases in the areas of Afghanistan nearest to Pakistan. The Air Force is also preparing to build numerous additional airfields to support the deployment of thousands more troops to the region.

These announcements amount to the Obama administration softening us up for the beginning of Chapter 2 of the war, with the perspective that the war will go on and on. The expansion of the war can only increase the suffering of the region's population, which has already suffered tremendously. The war has already pushed Afghanistan down to become the poorest country in Southern Asia. Twenty million of Afghanistan's 26 million inhabitants live under the internationally recognized poverty line, according to U.N. agencies. Expanding the war will also bring more suffering to U.S. soldiers and their families, not to mention the draining of hundreds of billions of dollars more to pay for it.

It's a war brought to us by a president who dared in the election to portray himself as "anti-war." In reality, even when Obama voiced opposition to the war in Iraq, he did so tepidly. At an anti-war rally in Chicago in 2002 before the Iraq war started, Obama insisted that he is not against all wars or even most wars.

In truth, Obama is in favor of all wars the bourgeoisie wants to carry out. And, despite his words, his every action demonstrates it. He voted for money for the war in Iraq every time until he was in his election campaign. He is sticking to Bush's timetable for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. He is engaging in a vast expansion of a new war in Afghanistan and Pakistan.