US corpse abuse pictures fuel anger, Karzai calls for early NATO exit

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Pictures of US troops abusing corpses, on top of a series of outrages this year, have fueled anti-US anger in Afghanistan, with the president calling Thursday for an early exit of foreign forces.
“The only way to put an end to such painful experiences is through an accelerated and full transition of security responsibilities to Afghan forces,” his office said in a statement.
NATO has some 130,000 US-led troops helping Karzai’s government fight a Taliban insurgency, but they are progressively handing over to Afghan forces ahead of a scheduled pull out by the end of 2014.
Updated plans for the withdrawal will be discussed at a NATO summit in Chicago next month, with polls showing Karzai’s call for an early exit is shared by citizens of troop-contributing nations.
In moves unlikely to go down well with his allies, Karzai has already accused NATO this week of failures that allowed the Taliban to launch major attacks in Kabul and has demanded the US “write down” that it will commit at least $2 billion a year to Afghanistan’s security after 2014. On Thursday he condemned the pictures of US troops as “inhumane and provocative”, noting similar incidents in the past had sparked an angry reaction by Afghans.
Pictures published by the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday showed US soldiers posing with the remains of Taliban insurgents, one of them with a man’s hand draped over his shoulder. “It is such a disgusting act to take photos with body parts and then share it with others,” Karzai said.
Every month this year a fresh scandal has rocked the alliance between the US and the Karzai government in their joint efforts against Taliban insurgents. In January, a video showed US Marines urinating on Taliban corpses; in February US soldiers burned copies of the Koran; and in March one US soldier went on the rampage and murdered 17 villagers in their homes.
The Taliban were also quick to condemn the photographs of US soldiers posing with the body parts of militants, calling the two-year-old pictures “inhuman” and vowing revenge.
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said those responsible would be punished but voiced “regret” that the LA Times had decided to publish the images against his wishes, warning they could prompt a violent backlash. But the biggest victim of the latest scandal is likely to be support for the NATO troops in their own countries. “In the West there was this strong idea that of course the troops came to fight terrorism but also came to help and to rebuild the country,” said Martine van Bijlert of the Afghan Analysts’ Network. “Incidents like this will feed into feelings at home of ‘What are we doing here?’,” she told AFP.

4 COMMENTS

  1. "The Taliban were also quick to condemn the photographs of US soldiers posing with the body parts of militants, calling the two-year-old pictures “inhuman” and vowing revenge"

    Inhumane? Those idiots probably sent the bomber in there. How stupid can the taliban get?

  2. When Taliban decapitate they call it Badal(revenge). Nobody raises hue and cry. When the American soldiers do similar horrible things the world demands a apology from USA.
    Let us not have dobbel standards. War is ugly esp this one. Let us for god,s sake stop it.
    Enough is enough!

    • How is that a double standard Dr.? When Americans preaches others to be civil like them (in the west)…

      • I did not know Americans "preached" others to be civil! Their gunboat diplomacy is the only "preaching" i know about. May i remind you a quote from the late Gandhi"a eye for an eye makes both blind" Do we want to become blind!
        Islam is a religion of peace and not revenge.

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