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This child is not a terrorist
Stop this slaughter!

November 2, 2001 | Page 1

THE WASHINGTON politicians say that the U.S. war on Afghanistan isn't against the people of Afghanistan. It's a war to bring the perpetrators of the September 11 attacks to justice, they say.

Tell that to Mauroof. U.S. bombers killed more than 20 people on October 21 in the village of Torai where Mauroof lives. Ten of the dead were his relatives--his mother-in-law, two sisters-in-law, three brothers-in-law, and four nephews, all of the boys under the age of eight.

"I saw the body of one of my brothers-in-law being pulled from the debris," Mauroof told a reporter. "The lower part of his body had been blown away. Some of the other bodies were unrecognizable. There were heads missing and arms blown off."

U.S. war planners say that the bombing of Torai was a regrettable mistake, and they're sorry. Like they were sorry when they obliterated the village of Karam. Like they were sorry when they bombed a hospital in Herat. Like they were sorry when they bombed a Red Cross warehouse in Kabul filled with desperately needed food and supplies--twice.

But none of these "mistakes" has stopped Washington's war makers. In fact, they escalated their bombing campaign last week--raining more terror from the skies over Afghanistan.

After the September 11 attacks, the politicians told us we needed to stand united as a nation. But when it came to the anthrax crisis, some people were more equal than others.

When Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle's office received a letter with anthrax, all of Congress shut down, and every worker was tested for exposure. But nearly a week passed before workers at the Brentwood postal facility that handled the mail got the same treatment--and then only after two workers died.

Washington told us that all Americans were in the same boat in the "war against terrorism." But some are taking the opportunity to line their pockets.

When Congress got back to work, at the top of its agenda was a tax cut that will benefit corporations and the wealthy to the tune of $70 billion. Under White House-backed legislation that passed the House, the wealthiest 1 percent of U.S. taxpayers will get 41 percent of the cuts in individual taxes, while the bottom 60 percent will receive a paltry 7 percent of the benefit.

The politicians say this is to defend freedom. But the new antiterrorism legislation signed into law last week gives federal authorities the power to detain noncitizens indefinitely if they're declared a "national security threat"--and to subject any group exercising its basic right to protest to wiretapping and even criminal prosecution.

Whatever pretty words Washington uses to dress up its war drive, the truth is that the U.S. government is trampling on justice, human rights and freedom--here and abroad.

We have to organize to stop this war before the nightmare gets worse.

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