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Medical charity says up tp 20 dead in air strike on northern Afghan hospital, including 3 children

Hopsital hit by US in AfghanistanThe United States has been condemned for launching an airstrike on a Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) hospital in Afghanistan that is believed to have killed up to 20 people.

The hospital was hit during an aerial bombardment on Saturday morning in the besieged city of Kunduz, destroying a large portion of the facility. An MSF source told the Guardian that up to 20 Afghan members of staff and patients were killed and dozens more injured. They said the death toll could rise further. Among the killed were nine MSF staff and seven patients from the intensive care unit, including three children.


U.N.: Civilian casualties in Afghanistan reach record levels

Afghanistan civilian casualtiesThe number of women and children killed or injured through the year in Afghanistan increased by 23 percent and 13 percent, respectively, as overall casualties reached record levels.

There have been 4,921 civilian casualties -- 1,592 civilians killed and 3,329 wounded -- in Afghanistan from January until June, a one percent increase over last year's record, according to a report by the United Nations released Wednesday.


The Company Getting Rich Off the ISIS War

Paul WolfowitzFor the Middle East, the growth of the self-proclaimed Islamic State has been a catastrophe. For one American firm, it’s been a gold mine.

The war against ISIS isn’t going so great, with the self-appointed terror group standing up to a year of U.S. airstrikes in Syria and Iraq.

But that hasn’t kept defense contractors from doing rather well amidst the fighting. Lockheed Martin has received orders for thousands of more Hellfire missiles. AM General is busy supplying Iraq with 160 American-built Humvee vehicles, while General Dynamics is selling the country millions of dollars worth of tank ammunition.


U.S. helicopter 'friendly fire' incident kills eight Afghan soldiers

US Friendly fire kills AfghanisAt least eight Afghan Army soldiers were killed and five were wounded after two U.S. helicopters attacked a military checkpoint the country's Logar province on Monday.

The attack happened at 6:40 a.m. local time, according to Mohammad Rahim Amin, district chief of Baraki Barak.

"The outpost was completely destroyed; it was fired upon a lot," Amin told The New York Times. "The bodies were in bad shape."


Perpetual war creates endless consequences

Perpetual warWhen the outgoing chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, began this month by issuing a farewell report on U.S. military strategy, the gist was hardly big news. “Dempsey to Pentagon: Prepare for the Never-Ending War” read the headline on the cover page of the National Journal.

The “war on terror” now looks so endless that no one speculates anymore about when it might conclude. “This war, like all wars, must end,” President Barack Obama declared in a major speech more than two years ago. “That’s what history advises. That’s what our democracy demands.” But midway through 2015, this war seems as interminable as ever.


Far from facing the truth, the US is telling new lies about Iraq

Lies about iraqA couple of weeks ago, the Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush was asked in an interview with Fox News whether, knowing what he knows now, he would have invaded Iraq.

It’s the kind of predictable question for which most people assumed he would have a coherent answer. They were wrong. Jeb blew it. “I would have [authorised the invasion],” he said. “And so would have Hillary Clinton, just to remind everybody. And so would almost everybody that was confronted with the intelligence they got.”


The Real Cost of Vietnam

Vietnam warThe commemoration of the end of the Vietnam War this week in 1975 will be lost on many Americans who are too young to recall the tumultuous events of the Indochina wars. (We also bombed Laos and Cambodia mercilessly in the same period.)

The iconic photographs of the U.S. helicopter about to lift off from the roof of the U.S. embassy in Saigon, with desperate Vietnamese scrambling to board, as the final reckoning are symbolic but also misleading. The image of the "pitiful, helpless giant" misleads because the U.S. military had almost completely withdrawn many months before after having laid waste to Vietnam, north and south, for nearly a decade.


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