U.S. Steps Up Military Offensives in Afghanistan
February 14, 2010
On February 13, 7,500 U.S., British and Afghan puppet troops supported by attack helicopters and jet fighters invaded and occupied the Afghan town of Marjah and the surrounding area. After cordoning off the area, U.S.-led troops pushed into the center of the town and are now occupying and patrolling its streets with tanks and armored vehicles. As The Worker goes to press, 15,000 U.S.-led troops occupy the area. The people of Marjah have been unable to leave their homes and troops are carrying out house-to-house searches. Leaflets distributed before the offensive issued ultimatums that fighters leave the area or be killed. Military officials admit that their announcement of the impending military assault weeks ahead of time caused thousands of civilians to flee the town. Uncounted civilian casualties are already being reported. General McChrystal boasts that occupation troops have "got a government in a box, ready to roll in" and that this "model" will be repeated in towns throughout southern Afghanistan and enforced by permanent occupation.
The escalating military intervention by U.S.-led forces and the inordinate number of occupation troops being mobilized indicate that the war in Afghanistan has reached a new stage. The disproportionate size of the current military campaign (in Marjah there are 10 occupation troops for every one probable resistance fighter) is a result of the increasing desperation of U.S. imperialism. State Department officials openly admit that resistance forces are actually governing in every province except Kabul and that occupation forces are now coming under attack more than at any other time the war. As a result of this balance of forces, U.S. imperialism is scaling back its pretensions of victory and pursuing a policy of trying to crush the people's resistance enough to force acceptance of a U.S. dictated "political settlement." Put simply, the U.S. government, along with other NATO powers, are losing the war but relying on their military might to save themselves a place in Afghanistan on the basis of "might makes right."
From the beginning, the war in Afghanistan has been an aggressive, imperialist war – a war aimed not only at occupying and colonizing Afghanistan but also at setting up military bases throughout the region and further imposing the dictates of U.S. imperialism on the peoples of Central Asia, the Middle East and elsewhere. In pursuit of these chauvinist and aggressive ambitions, U.S. imperialism has inflicted untold tragedies on the people of Afghanistan – including the saturated bombing of civilian population centers, massacres at wedding ceremonies, market-center bombings, the systematic torture and summary execution of POWs by the U.S. and its client armies, a catastrophic refugee crisis, etc. etc. At the same time, U.S. imperialism has come up against the stubborn fact that the people have not been pacified or defeated. On the contrary, the resistance keeps advancing and is defeating the U.S. occupationist armies.
Facing the resistance of the people, U.S. imperialism has not and will not become more reasonable or admit its "mistake." On the contrary. It knows only the methods of death and destruction and hence it will escalate and escalate and escalate the war until it is defeated.
The lessons of the war in Afghanistan are clear. While U.S. imperialism is trying to impose its dictate and is becoming more and more aggressive, the Afghan resistance reminds us that the masses of the people are the motive force of history. More than eight years of war have been unable to break the back of the Afghan resistance precisely because no amount of military force can crush a people's desire to be free from foreign occupation. In order to stay the hand of the imperialist war-makers and defeat them, the decisive thing is for the people to activate and mobilize themselves. Now is the time to strengthen the people's independent anti-war, anti-imperialist organizations and escalate our struggle to demand "U.S. and All Foreign Troops Out of Afghanistan, Now!"