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Not Shocking, But Awful: US Denies Civilian Deaths in Syria, Iraq Bombings

Civilian deaths in Syria and Iraq Photo credit: Stopwar.org.uk

Despite eyewitness and social media accounts, the United States continues to deny that there has been “collateral damage” during its seven-week old bombing campaign against militants in Syria and Iraq. Addressing a September 23rd attack in the Syrian province of Idlib, Pentagon spokesman Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby commented, “We don’t believe that there’s much reason to be too concerned about any collateral damage, you know, to civilian property, that kind of thing.”

Watch groups monitoring the conflict beg to differ.

Human Rights Watch reported that the strikes on Idlib killed at least seven civilians, five of which were children, and injured fifteen other non-combatants (some Syrian activist groups pegged the death toll at twenty-four). According to reports, a series of Tomahawk missiles struck a compound of the militant group Jabhat al-Nusra at around 3:30 in the morning. A second bombardment struck two homes in the village of Kafr Deryan, a kilometer away. Three local residents told HRW that, “there were no Jabhat al-Nusra buildings, checkpoints, or vehicles in the vicinity of the strike.”

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights announced that a recent airstrike on a grain silo in Manbij, in Aleppo province, killed an unspecified number of workers. Observatory director Rami Abdurrahman told the Associated Press that the attack “killed only civilians there, workers at the site. There was no ISIS inside,” while adding that all of the food stored in the silo was destroyed.

Shortly after, the US military denied civilian casualties without providing evidence to back its’ claim.

In response to the Pentagon’s denial, Fadel Abdul Ghany, head of the Syrian Network for Human Rights, said, “It’s in the American’s interest to hide it. The reality is there are civilians” among the dead.

In Iraq, there have been over 240 bombings since early August, undoubtedly adding to the appalling civilian death toll since the 2003 American-led invasion. Raed Jarrar, Policy Impact Coordinator for the American Friends Service Committee, told Common Dreams, “I’m concerned that the U.S. is not held to the same standard as other countries when it comes to violating international law. There is strong evidence that the US-led attacks have killed dozens of civilians in Syria in the last few weeks and killed tens and thousands of civilians in Iraq over the last decade, and we haven’t seen any investigations into these crimes.”

But the bombings themselves may not be the worst consequence when it comes to human rights. According to Jarrar, “The indirect US intervention is left unchecked as well: US training, funding and equipping proxy groups in Iraq and Syria. There is very strong evidence that many of the allies that have been receiving US military assistance have been committing gross human rights violations and the US has not been held accountable.” He added, “There is no reason to believe the US will investigate itself.”

Sources:

As US Bombs Iraq and Syria, Who Exactly Is Being Killed?
Pentagon: No Evidence Airstrikes Killed Civilians Despite Reports
US/Syria: Investigate Possible Unlawful US Strikes

Patrick M Arthur

Patrick M Arthur

Patrick M Arthur is freelance journalist who has previously covered the Occupy Wall Street Movement and the New York Mets. He is a member of the National Writers Union with his first book, “Occupation: Gonzo” due out soon.
Patrick M Arthur
Patrick M Arthur
About Patrick M Arthur (4 Articles)
Patrick M Arthur is freelance journalist who has previously covered the Occupy Wall Street Movement and the New York Mets. He is a member of the National Writers Union with his first book, “Occupation: Gonzo” due out soon.
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  • zabada

    America,Israel and Zionist trapped both Sunnis and Syiah to kill each others badly..both side have no choice..but killing each others..at the past many nations trapped in Zionist games.not only Arabs.it is costed too many casualties,suffer,death,blood, and decades to get rid from these evil Zionist games.Zionist games divide people in two by creating political ideology…then people will engage in war and killing each others.Zionist bankers make a lot of money by selling weapons and will lend money to destroyed cities,countries.Many modern wars are really Zionist Bankers wars.Zionist also deserve to control all nations by creating chaos and wars.America now is Zionist weapon to destroy Arabs.who are enemies to Israel.In Arab world it is hard for Zionist to create political sectarians..since most Arabs stick on their way in politic,dictatorship and monarchy..so they find new tool to destroy them…planted Syiah and Sunnis sectarian.Anyway their games will turn to an upset..likely to the past Zionist games destroyed them badly after destroyed others…At the past Russia suffer badly by Jews games there..and have not revenge yet.Germany is revenge on Zionist Jews by killing 6 million of them.Muslims save many Jews at the past ,when Europeans killing ,burning and oppressing them.Now they are plying more dirty games.Zionist playing games in the west and won in Palestine by enslave America and Britain.In near future Russians and Muslims and some whites in the west who acknowledge Jew,s games,will massacred them badly..a long with Whites Zionist in the west..Zionist Jews last games eventually will wipe all of them and no more Israel or Jews and Zionist aftermath.Their last games really will turn to an up set.with Israel,Jews,Whites Zionist in the West absent,the world will turn to paradise.Ask Jews,Whites Zionist,Israel ,Bush sr and Jr and Obama to plant more games in here.America also want to planted their regime on Arabs..they need Arabs oil,planted nwo on Arab..America will bombs who would stop it,s nwo on Arabs…they don,t if it is killing half of Arabs,kids,infants old and young.Nwo will created new nwo regimes on Arab countries ashes.