On August 29, a missile fired from a U.S. drone massacred a family on the outskirts of the Afghan capital of Kabul. Zemari Ahmadi’s car was hit with the missile as his children and family members were coming out of their house to greet him. Of the ten people killed, seven were children. The youngest victim was two year old Malika Ahmadi. According to the Pentagon, the drone strike killed two members of ISIS-K, a group which claimed responsibility for the recent bombing in Kabul.
The killing is another tragic example of the senseless and brutal violence inflicted on the Afghan people by the U.S. military occupation. Mr. Ahmadi was applying for a special visa to leave the country. He worked for a western NGO and was the breadwinner for much of his extended family. They will be left without any means of support at all. Their economic situation is bound to be rendered even more precarious by the announcement that the U.S. is freezing the assets of the Afghan Central Bank, which in typically colonial fashion were held in the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank for International Settlements in Switzerland.
Another victim was Ahmadi’s son in law Ahmed Naser. Naser had fought as an officer in the Afghan National Army that was set up by the occupying forces and was in Kabul attempting to flee the country with his family, fearing reprisals from the victorious Taliban. These kinds of betrayals are unfortunately all too common for the U.S. empire. Once the empire has no more use for someone, it discards its former allies.
The drone warfare program has been a massive and bloody failure. Much of the evidence of the extrajudicial murder campaign, approved at the highest level of government, was released by Daniel Hale. On July 27, Hale was sentenced to 45 months in prison for releasing classified documents detailing the sadistic program.
According to the Pentagon’s rules of engagement, unidentified males over the age of sixteen are considered enemy combatants. This gives free reign for drone pilots thousands of miles away to conduct indiscriminate slaughter of civilians and escape punishment. Hale revealed that 90% of all those killed by drones were innocent civilians.
Revelations about this most recent drone massacre come amid allegations that many of the victims of the recent bombing at Kabul airport were in fact shot from towers manned by Turkish and American soldiers amidst the confusion after the bombing. These reports are developing and warrant a full investigation.