Wed Sep 28, 2022
September 28, 2022

Biden Keeps US$7 Billion Away from Starving Afghan people

On February 11, 2022, U.S. President Joe Biden issued an executive order allocating $3.5 billion of frozen Afghan reserves in U.S. banks to the families of victims of the 9/11 attacks.

 
By Fabio Bosco
 
The remaining US$3.5 billion will be allocated to humanitarian aid via the U.N. This money will only be released after consideration by the American judiciary. That is, not a cent of the more than US$7 billion of Afghan reserves in U.S. banks will be unfrozen in the near future.
Afghanistan still has more than US$2 billion in frozen reserves in Germany, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates.
The freezing of Afghan reserves comes at a time of acute humanitarian crisis in the country.
According to the U.N. World Food Program, 23 million Afghans are hungry and 38% of children under 5 years of age suffer from chronic malnutrition, of which one million children could die of hunger.(I)
The coronavirus pandemic is overcrowding the only 5 hospitals that serve Covid-19 patients. These hospitals lack medical supplies, ICU beds, ventilators, as well as funding to pay doctors and staff, as well as fuel for the heating amidst winter. Thirty-three healthcare units that treated Covid-19 patients are closed due to lack of funding. Only 27% of the population received the single dose of Jansen and there are no masks to be distributed free of charge to the population. (II)
President Biden is playing imperialist dirty tricks subjecting the much needed Afghan reserves to a future decision of U.S. courts using the families of the 9/11 victims as a cover.
The Afghan population cannot be penalized for an action taken by al-Qaeda led by Bin Laden, a Saudi billionaire whose relationship with Afghanistan begins with supporting the American-funded mujahideen who fought back the Soviet occupation. Subsequently, Bin Laden settled in Afghanistan in May 1996 at the invitation of American-sponsored warlords. American plutocrats, including the current U.S. president,  generated Bin Laden not the Afghan people.
The 3,000 working class families who lost their loved ones on 9/11 must be compensated for the irreparable loss but freezing the much needed Afghan reserves will not bring justice but more losses for working class Afghans. 
 

War Reparations

In addition to the obligation to return Afghan reserves to the Afghan people, America owes another debt arising from the violence and destruction wrought over 20 years of the U.S. occupation.
More than 160,000 Afghans lost their lives due to the U.S. occupation. Villages and neighborhoods were destroyed by NATO troops.
Drug production and consumption soared during the U.S. occupation. Today there are about one million Afghans with chemical dependence on opioids and the country is the main producer of opium in the world, reaching an annual production of 4 thousand tons.(III)
The least President Biden should do immediately is to donate thousands of tons of wheat, rice, lentils, chicken and cooking oil to eliminate hunger and malnutrition in the country. The U.S. should also provide funding to reopen the 33 healthcare units to treat Covid-19 patients, in addition to sending respirators, masks and the missing vaccines to immunize at least 70% of the population. That would represent a first step in war reparations America owes Afghan working people.
 
Notes:
(I) https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/2/1/infographic-hunger-and-food-insecurity-in-maps-and-charts 
(II) https://apnews.com/article/afghanistan-coronavirus-pandemic-business-health-kabul-9e983468daac7ef86367b6b9f76a704f
(III) https://apnews.com/article/afghanistan-united-nations-kabul-taliban-1698fb11a337044134c440487a2cd5dc 
 
 

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