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Afghanistan War Weekly: July 11, 2011

This past week saw a high level of violence in both Afghanistan and Pakistan. In Afghanistan, attacks were reported against mine removal workers, while Pakistan’s use of rockets and artillery shells against Afghan militants complicated the conflict further. This week’s headlines also included a great deal of attention focused on the effect of the conflict on women in Afghanistan, along with other issues facing women in the region, such as domestic violence. Also of note was the recently passed 2012 defense spending bill in Congress, which includes $119 billion for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Efforts to defund combat in Afghanistan were defeated.
Thank you for reading.
Sharon Miller

Afghanistan News

US general: Afghan fight continues outside cities
While insurgent attacks on cities in Afghanistan have decreased, violence continues in outlying areas of the country, according to Lt. Gen. David Rodriguez, who was ending his job as the deputy commander of US forces in Afghanistan. However, the Taliban dismissed the idea and claimed that violence levels were the same as before.

Taliban kills 4 workers from demining group, frees 27 others
4 staff of the Demining Agency for Afghanistan were killed by the Taliban in a kidnapping in Farah province. 27 others were set free but given a warning not to work in Afghanistan anymore.

Afghan Bodyguard Kills Two From NATO Coalition
2 NATO coalition members were killed in Panjshir province by a bodyguard from Afghanistan’s intelligence service, who opened fire on a convoy heading out to train police. The bodyguard was then killed by NATO troops.

Canada wraps up combat operations in Afghanistan
Canada has ended its involvement in combat operations in Afghanistan.

Porous and Violent, Afghan-Tajik Border Is a Worry for the U.S.
Along the 870 mile long border between Afghanistan and Tajikistan, kidnappings, murders, and other violence are rampant and pose a threat to security in Central Asia and beyond.

Afghan election body to review poll dispute: Karzai
Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission will review the court ruling that overturned election results for over a quarter of the seats in Afghanistan’s Parliament.

Cold War flashbacks as Americans rebuild Soviet tunnel in Afghanistan
The Salang tunnel , which was built by the Soviets, connects northern and southern Afghanistan. It is now once again a focal point of old conflicts between the US and Russia.

Pakistan News

Dealing with Pakistan's nuclear weapons during the Afghanistan withdrawal
The upcoming troop drawdown has brought up the issue of nuclear weapons in Pakistan, and their effect on regional security.

Pakistan's rocket fire into Afghanistan alarms locals, US forces
Pakistan has fired approximately 700 rockets and artillery shells at militants in Afghanistan, killing dozens of Afghan civilians. US and Afghan officials are in talks with Pakistan to end the strikes, but Afghan locals and officials are asking that US forces take action to end the strikes, which complicates the matter further.

Pakistan Army Push on Taliban Bastion May Avoid a Main U.S. Foe
Although Pakistan’s campaign against the Taliban is intensifying, it might not put a stop to certain Taliban factions, including the one led by Jalaluddin Haqqani. This adds to the strain in US-Pakistan relations.

Women in Afghanistan

Suspect Freed in Afghan Mutilation Case
An update on the situation of Bibi Aisha, the young Afghan woman who appeared on the cover of Time Magazine in August 2010. The only suspect arrested for attacking her has now been released, and Aisha still has not been able to undergo any reconstructive surgery due to emotional trauma.

For Afghanistan’s Women, The Ordinary Is Outlawed: “Love Crimes of Kabul”
A review of the documentary Love Crimes of Kabul, airing on HBO.

Former child refugee becomes hero to hundreds of orphans
An interview with Andeisha Farid, former child refugee and founder of the Afghan Child Education and Care Organization in Kabul.

Afghanistan's women are at the sharp end of war
The future for Afghan women is bleak unless their rights are included as non-negotiable in any future political settlement in Afghanistan. Violence against women is on the rise in Afghanistan.

Women-run Afghan media offer untold side of story
Female journalists in Afghanistan face many threats for the work they do on stories that would otherwise go unreported.

Raped Afghan women have no hope of justice
Despite recent attempts at legal reforms, most Afghan women who are survivors of violence face an uphill battle with the court system in Afghanistan. Many are not aware of their rights. Commentary by Noorjahan Akbar.

Other Related News

U.S. House approves $649 bln for defense in 2012
The 2012 defense spending bill, totaling $649 billion, includes $119 billion for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Efforts to defund combat operations in Afghanistan were defeated.

Navy medic detained for refusing training over WikiLeaks claims
A Royal Navy medic has refused rifle training due to moral objections to the war in Afghanistan, and has been sentenced to 7 months of detention.


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