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Afghanistan War Weekly, May 31, 2011

This past Monday, the United States observed Memorial Day, and there were many articles related to the holiday this week. There were also stories of continuing violence in Afghanistan and of the strain in US-Pakistan relations, as well as of soldiers facing trial for murders of civilians during the war in Afghanistan. Finally, the combination of the proposed Defense budget and the Memorial Day holiday led to many US politicians and others voicing opposition to the war.

Thank you for reading. I welcome your feedback.

Sharon Miller

Violence in Afghanistan

"Twin suicide blasts in western Afghanistan kill 4"
At least 4 people were killed in suicide bombings in Herat province.

"NATO soldiers die in Afghanistan"
9 NATO soldiers were killed in Afghanistan on May 26, eight of whom died in an attack in the southern part of the country involving two explosive devices. The 9th soldier died in a helicopter crash in eastern Afghanistan.

"Afghanistan Demands End to Airstrikes on Houses"
Hamid Karzai has issued a warning to NATO forces that he will not tolerate air strikes against houses or civilians, but did not clarify what the consequences would be if strikes continue.

Hamid Karzai warns Nato risks becoming 'occupying force' in Afghanistan
More on Karzai’s warning about US and NATO attacks on civilian targets.

Afghanistan & Pakistan News

"Bin Laden's legacy is blurred in Afghanistan"
In Jalalabad, where Osama bin Laden once lived before 9/11, memories of bin Laden are mixed.

"Can Afghanistan hang on to its newly minted college grads?"
The first graduation at the American University of Afghanistan brings up the issue of “brain drain” in Afghanistan, along with the question of whether the new graduates will be able to find work and help rebuild the country.

"ANALYSIS: What ails US-Pakistan relations?"\05\28\story_28-5-2011_pg3_6
Journalist and academic SP Seth on the complex relationship between the US and Pakistan.

Related News in the US

"U.S. soldier testifies against co-defendant in Afghan murder"
Army Specialist Jeremy Morlock, who was sentenced to 24 years in prison for murdering 3 Afghan civilians, testified against Private Andrew Holmes, who is facing trial for the same crimes. Both had appeared in photographs with a dead 15-year-old Afghan boy in March.

"U.S. Army private admits murdering Taliban detainee"
Private First-Class David Lawrence was demoted, dishonorably discharged, and imprisoned after he pled guilty to murdering a Taliban leader who was shackled in a jail cell in Afghanistan last October. Psychiatrists had diagnosed Lawrence with schizophrenia and post-traumatic stress disorder, but prosecutors decided to continue with the court martial.

"General: We Can't Kill Our Way Out Of Afghanistan"
An interview with Maj. Gen. John Campbell, the top US commander in eastern Afghanistan, on the war since the killing of bin Laden.

"Bipartisan House sends Obama message on Afghanistan"
As part of deliberations regarding a $690 billion defense bill that passed the House, over 200 representatives, both Republicans and Democrats, voted in favor of a proposed amendment to limit the Afghanistan war. The amendment, however, was narrowly defeated.

"Rep. Bruce Braley Calls For Immediate Withdrawal In Afghanistan"
Rep. Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) is advocating for the withdrawals of all US combat forces from Afghanistan within a year after visiting Afghanistan and in the wake of the killing of bin Laden.

"Cost of war in Afghanistan will be major factor in troop-reduction talks"
According to military officials, reducing troop levels might not necessarily lead to reduced costs due to the cost of infrastructure.

Memorial Day editorials/opinions

"Something different to remember on Memorial Day"
An op-ed about remembering conscientious objectors on Memorial Day.

"Our New Iraq-Afghanistan War National Holiday"
A blog post about a proposed holiday honoring troops serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.

"Memorial Day comes as troops fight in Afghanistan"
Juxtaposing the war in Afghanistan with the observance of Memorial Day in the US.


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