US forces appear to have opened a new phase in the war in Afghanistan with two bombing raids over the weekend that Afghan commanders in the area said were aimed at clashing militia forces rather than the Taliban or Al Qaeda.
A statement on Sunday by the US Central Command said American aircraft dropped precision-guided bombs when so called "enemy troops" attacked forces loyal to the eight-week-old Kabul government near the southeastern city of Khost on Saturday afternoon. The command said a second strike was carried out on Sunday, again with precision-guided bombs.
After fighting broke out between rival warlords in northern and eastern Afghanistan in recent weeks, interim Afghanleader Hamid Karzai said he would request US airstrikes if they were needed to end clashes between armed factions that control much of Afghanistan outside Kabul. Unlike the airstrikes that began October 7 and were aimed at destroying the Taliban or Al Qaeda, these strikes were aimed at controlling clashes among militia forces.
The war is clearly not over, though it has fast disappeared from the media. We turn now to a speech given byactivist, theologian, and scholar Cornel West, given several months ago in the Bay area during the presentation ofthe Mario Savio awards.
- Cornel West, professor of African-American studies and philosophy of religion at Harvard University andauthor of the best-selling book, ??Race Matters.