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US-Soldaten in Afghanistan

The Guardian


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"Indonesian troops may regularly join training on Australian soil as defence ties deepen"


Australien und Indonesien planten eine engere Kooperation im Verteidigungsbereich, erklärt Daniel Hurst. "Australia's defence minister, Peter Dutton, and foreign minister, Marise Payne, met with their Indonesian counterparts in Jakarta on Thursday, on the first leg of a four-country trip that will also include India, South Korea and the United States. Indonesia's defence minister, Prabowo Subianto, said he and Dutton had discussed 'the possibility of Australia opening their training areas for the participation of Indonesian units to be training together with Australia'. (…) Speaking after he and Dutton agreed to update the countries' defence cooperation arrangement, Prabowo said: 'We are close neighbours and we would like to be even closer friends.'"

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"Biden calls for new era in US foreign policy in defensive Afghanistan speech"


Künftig wolle US-Präsident Joe Biden eine Außenpolitik betreiben, die sich nicht auf militärische Stärke stütze, berichtet Julian Borger. "Addressing the nation from the White House 24 hours after the last US soldier left Kabul, Biden sought to confront his critics about the handling of the withdrawal. He celebrated the evacuation of 124,000 civilians in the 17 days following the fall of the Afghan capital and said it was time to 'turn the page' on the US role abroad, pointing to a less interventionist future. 'This decision about Afghanistan is not just about Afghanistan. It's about ending an era of major military operations to remake other countries,' the president said."

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"Thailand's Protests Are Turning Dangerously Violent"


In Thailand würden Proteste unterschiedlicher Gruppierungen zunehmend von staatlicher Seite gewaltsam niedergeschlagen, klärt Tyler Roney auf. "The protest movement has seen a number of flash points - from quarantine defiance to water cannons and rubber duckies - but the protests and the retaliatory violence continue to escalate. A chaotic mixture of organizers and groups now compete for attention. Sometimes followers of ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra known as the red shirts will drive around the city honking their horns in what's referred to as a car mob. Sometimes the student-led Free Youth will pursue more aggressive tactics. And for the last week, Din Daeng intersection has seen nightly clashes with police, even as the wider protest movement encourages nonviolence. The intersection, a major roadway in the heart of Bangkok, has become synonymous with protest and police violence."

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"'Nothing to eat': Somalia hit by triple threat of climate crisis, Covid and conflict"


Moulid Hujale und Lizzy Davies geben einen Überblick über die Situation im krisengeplagten Somalia. "Prolonged droughts, shrinking water resources and lack of fertile land are fuelling tensions between clans and creating large-scale displacement across Somalia. A cluster of overlapping crises are menacing the fragile east African country, with the climate crisis exacerbating existing conflicts and contributing to new ones, Covid-19 claiming lives and livelihoods, and political instability never far away."

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"Taliban declares 'war is over in Afghanistan' as foreign powers exit Kabul"


Nach der Besetzung des Präsidentenpalastes in Kabul hätten die Taliban verkündet, die Kontrolle über Afghanistan übernommen zu haben, schreibt Hannah Ellis-Petersen. "'Today is a great day for the Afghan people and the mujahideen [Taliban],' said Taliban spokesman Mohammad Naeem. 'They have witnessed the fruits of their efforts and their sacrifices for 20 years. Thanks to God, the war is over in the country.' (…) The Taliban are expected to proclaim a new Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in the coming days."

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"'I worry my daughters will never know peace': women flee the Taliban - again"


Zainab Pirzad, Robaba Rezaie und Atifa Allizada werfen einen Blick auf die Lage von Frauen in den umkämpften Gebieten Afghanistans. "Reports of Taliban advances into villages and towns across Afghanistan have spread fear among women across the country. (…) The Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations confirmed that reports had been received of the Taliban killing civilian men and forcing women and girls into marriage. (…) However, 38-year-old Ziagul from Bamiyan does not need a government agency to tell her that the Taliban are using women as 'weapons of war'. (…) 'Even then when they attacked Bamiyan (in the 1990s), they had raped women. This fear has always been in our minds. That's why we ran away, to prevent this from happening again,' she says."

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"More than 200 children remain abducted in Nigeria amid 'kidnap epidemic'"


Entführungen von Kindern seien in Nigeria noch immer an der Tagesordnung, bemerkt Emmanuel Akinwotu. "More than 200 schoolchildren remain abducted by armed 'bandit' groups in northern Nigeria, among more than 1,000 students taken this year as schools in northern Nigeria have become prime targets. (...) A startling absence of security and - according to many communities - a reluctance to meaningfully engage armed threats have rapidly turned much of northern Nigeria into a haven for kidnap gangs and a hell for thousands of families."

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"China court upholds death sentence against Canadian Robert Schellenberg"


Ein chinesisches Gericht habe den Kanadier Robert Schellenberg wegen Drogenschmuggels zum Tode verurteilt, vermeldet Helen Davidson. "Schellenberg has been detained in China since 2014, when he was accused of attempting to smuggle 225kg of methamphetamine to Australia. (…) His case is one of at least two involving Canadian detainees expected to hear a result as early as Tuesday, in what observers and foreign governments have labeled 'hostage diplomacy' by Chinese authorities over an ongoing extradition hearing in Canada for a Huawei executive wanted in the US. (…) The arrest of the men and the retrial of Schellenberg have been linked to Canada's arrest of Chinese Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, which occurred just days earlier. (…) The ongoing extradition hearing in Canada has sent Canada-China relations plummeting."

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"North Korea wants sanctions eased on metal, fuel and 'liquor and suits' to restart US talks"


Nordkorea fordere als Bedingung für Gespräche zur nuklearen Abrüstung die Aufhebung von Sanktionen in empfindlichen Sektoren, meldet The Guardian. "Last week the two Koreas restored hotlines that North Korea suspended a year ago, the first hint in months that Pyongyang might be more responsive to engagement efforts. (…) Citing Park, Ha Tae-keung, a member of the parliamentary intelligence committee, told reporters on Tuesday: 'As a precondition to reopen talks, North Korea argues that the United States should allow mineral exports and imports of refined oil and necessities'. (…) Washington has given no indication of a willingness to ease sanctions ahead of any talks."

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"Why the internet in Cuba has become a US political hot potato"


Die Administration von US-Präsident Joe Biden prüfe, ob sie den Internetzugang in Kuba verbessern könne, schildern Ed Augustin und Daniel Montero. "Hundreds of Cuban-Americans marched against the regime in Washington last week, and politicians are trying to leverage political capital: Florida senator Marco Rubio has called for the US to beam balloon-supplied internet to the island nation, while Joe Biden said his administration is assessing whether it can increase Cuba's connectivity. (…) Experts say it's unclear how internet access could be increased at scale if the host nation is unwilling to cooperate."

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"Resurgent Taliban escalates nationwide offensive in Afghanistan"


Die Taliban hätten ihre Offensive in Afghanistan ausgeweitet, drei Großstädte angegriffen und einen Flughafen im Süden mit Raketen attackiert, bemerkt Peter Beaumont. "As Afghan government forces struggled with a resurgent Taliban after the withdrawal of US-led foreign forces, hundreds of commandos were deployed to the economically important western city of Herat, while authorities in the southern city of Lashkar Gah called for more troops to rein in the assaults amid fierce fighting. (…) The spokesperson for the Afghan armed forces, Gen Ajmal Omar Shinwari, told a press conference on Sunday that three provinces in southern and western Afghanistan faced critical security situations."

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"Israel blames Iran for attack on tanker that killed Briton and Romanian"


Israel beschuldige Iran, für einen Drohnenangriff auf einen Öltanker vor der Küste Omans verantwortlich zu sein, schreiben Martin Chulov und Dan Sabbagh. Zwei Besatzungsmitglieder des Schiffes seien bei dem Angriff ums Leben gekommen. "The Liberian flagged Mercer Street, which is linked to an Israeli tycoon, was hit off the coast of Oman late on Thursday in what is thought to have been a swarm attack involving multiple drones. The strike appeared to fit a pattern of previous attacks on maritime traffic linked to Iran and Israel carried out in a shadow war between the two foes. (…) The deaths are likely to spark a more significant response in coming days than the dozens of prior strikes, which caused only material damage."

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"Pentagon chief 'deeply concerned' by sharp rise in suicides among US troops"


Die Zahl der Selbstmorde unter US-Soldatinnen und Soldaten im aktiven Dienst sei im vergangenen Jahr stark angestiegen, bemerkt Maya Yang. "The defense secretary, Lloyd Austin, has expressed concern about the alarming spike in suicides among US forces. In 2020, 385 active-duty soldiers died by suicide, marking a steep increase from the 326 cases reported by the Pentagon in 2018. (…) In addition to physical improvements, army officials have stressed the need for improving mental health accessibility on bases."

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"Emmanuel Macron 'pushes for Israeli inquiry' into NSO spyware concerns"


Frankreichs Präsident Emmanuel Macron habe mit Israels Ministerpräsidenten Naftali Bennett telefoniert, um sicherzustellen, dass die israelische Regierung den kürzlich bekanntgewordenen Vorwürfen in Bezug auf die NSO-Spionagesoftware nachgehe, bemerkt Bethan McKernan. "In a phone call, Macron expressed concern that his phone and those of most of his cabinet could have been infected with Pegasus, hacking software developed by the Israeli surveillance firm NSO Group, which enables operators of the tool to extract messages, photos and emails, record calls and secretly activate microphones from infected devices. (…) NSO has said Macron was not a 'target' of any of its customers, meaning the company denies he was selected for surveillance using Pegasus."

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"Violence against Africa's children is rising. It stains our collective conscience"


Die Gewalt gegen Kinder in Afrika nehme zu, beobachtet Graça Machel. "Violence against children is once more on the rise driven partly by online sexual exploitation and child sexual abuse tourism and recently by lockdowns and school closures. (…) Armed conflicts by groups such as Boko Haram in Nigeria, al-Shabaab in Somalia and Amba separatists in Cameroon, frequently target children, making them the most common victims of abductions, rape, forced marriages and murder. (…) Ending violence against children is one of the most important priorities of our time, and it will not happen without strong political leadership."

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"What is Pegasus spyware and how does it hack phones?"


Sam Cutler und David Pegg erklären die Funktionsweise der von der israelischen Firma NSO Group entwickelten Spionagesoftware "Pegasus": "Pegasus infections can be achieved through so-called 'zero-click' attacks, which do not require any interaction from the phone's owner in order to succeed. (…) Once installed on a phone, Pegasus can harvest more or less any information or extract any file. SMS messages, address books, call history, calendars, emails and internet browsing histories can all be exfiltrated."

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"Kremlin papers appear to show Putin's plot to put Trump in White House"


Russlands Präsident Wladimir Putin soll versucht haben, Donald Trump bei der US-Wahl 2016 zum Sieg zu verhelfen, schreiben Julian Borger, Luke Harding und Dan Sabbagh. "Vladimir Putin personally authorised a secret spy agency operation to support a 'mentally unstable' Donald Trump in the 2016 US presidential election during a closed session of Russia's national security council, according to what are assessed to be leaked Kremlin documents. The key meeting took place on 22 January 2016, the papers suggest, with the Russian president, his spy chiefs and senior ministers all present. (…) Russia's three spy agencies were ordered to find practical ways to support Trump, in a decree appearing to bear Putin's signature."

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"South Africa: 45 dead as unrest linked to Zuma jailing intensifies"


Die Unruhen in Südafrika in Folge der Inhaftierung des ehemaligen Präsidenten Jacob Zuma spitzten sich weiter zu, beobachtet Jason Burke. "President Cyril Ramaphosa has described the deadly violence and protests as unprecedented in the 27 years since the end of the apartheid regime. The death toll from nearly a week of unrest has risen to 45, some from gunshot wounds, while 750 people have been arrested. (…) It is the first time a former president has been jailed in post-apartheid South Africa, and has been seen as a landmark for the rule of law in the country, as well as a victory for Ramaphosa. But the subsequent violence has tarnished this achievement, analysts say."

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"Iran and Russia move to fill diplomatic vacuum in Afghanistan"


Iran, Pakistan, Russland und die Türkei wollten das diplomatische und militärische Vakuum füllen, das sich in Afghanistan durch den Abzug der US-Truppen aufgetan habe, erklärt Patrick Wintour. "With an estimated 700km of its border with Afghanistan now in Taliban hands, Iran does not have much choice but to take an active interest. (…) Russia has sought assurances that the Taliban will not allow Afghanistan's northern borders to be used as a base for attacks on the former Soviet republics. (…) In a move designed in part to please the US but also to advance Ankara's self-interest, Turkey has conditionally offered Turkish troops for a Nato-overseen project to protect Kabul international airport."

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"Afghan anger over US's sudden, silent Bagram departure"


Die US-Streitkräfte hätten das afghanische Militär im Vorfeld nicht über den Zeitpunkt ihres Abzugs vom Militärstützpunkt Bagram in der vergangenen Woche informiert, erläutern Peter Beaumont und Emma Graham-Harrison. Viele Afghaninnen und Afghanen seien deshalb verärgert. "US forces plunged their main operating base in Afghanistan into darkness and abandoned it to looters when they slipped away in the middle of the night after two decades at the site without notifying their Afghan allies. (…) Many saw it as emblematic of a withdrawal they say is being carried out entirely to fit an American political schedule, with no heed for the collapsing security situation on the ground. (…) The new commander of Bagram airbase, Gen Mir Asadullah Kohistani, only discovered the Americans' had gone several hours after their 3am departure."

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"Xi Jinping warns China won't be bullied in speech marking 100-year anniversary of CCP"


Bei einer Rede anlässlich des hundertjährigen Gründungstags der Kommunistischen Partei Chinas habe Präsident Xi Jinping eine an ausländische Akteure gerichtete Warnung ausgesprochen, bemerkt Helen Davidson. "Standing at the Gate of Heavenly Peace above a portrait of Mao Zedong on Thursday, Xi said the era of China being bullied was 'gone forever'. 'We will not accept sanctimonious preaching from those who feel they have the right to lecture us,' he said. 'We have never bullied, oppressed, or subjugated the people of any other country, and we never will.' 'By the same token we will never allow anyone to bully, oppress, or subjugate [China]. Anyone who tries will find them on a collision course with a steel wall forged by 1.4 billion people.'"

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"The looming famine in Tigray is an avoidable catastrophe"


Der von der äthiopischen Regierung angekündigte Waffenstillstand werde die drohende Hungersnot der Bevölkerung von Tigray nicht verhindern, warnt George Monbiot. "This week the Ethiopian government declared a ceasefire, ostensibly to 'enable farmers to till their land', but more plausibly to regroup after an astounding reversal: Tigrayan rebels have recaptured the regional capital. In any case, it's too late. Tillage should have happened over the past three months. People who are starving today can't wait for possible harvests in November. (…) No part of the catastrophe in Tigray is natural or inevitable. Abiy, with his allies in Eritrea, is turning a thriving, prosperous region into the scene of another historic disaster. And he won't stop until the world wakes up."

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"Isis-linked groups open up new fronts across sub-Saharan Africa"


Eine Reihe militärischer Siege, neue Allianzen und Strategieveränderungen hätten die Position einiger dem sogenannten "Islamischen Staat" (Isis) nahestehender Gruppierungen in Afrika gestärkt, analysiert Jason Burke. "Following recent gains in Nigeria, the Sahel, in Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Isis propaganda published by the group's leadership in its heartland in the Middle East is increasingly stressing sub-Saharan Africa as a new front which may compensate the group for significant setbacks elsewhere. Detailed accounts of recent internal debates in Nigeria, where Islamic State West Africa Province (Iswap) recently routed Boko Haram, suggest a new emphasis by Isis in Africa on providing security and basic services to local communities. Though strategies differ according to local conditions, the new bid by the group to create zones of 'jihadi governance' could pose a major challenge to weak, corrupt and inefficient national authorities, analysts fear."

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"Kim Jong-un says North Korea preparing for 'dialogue and confrontation' with US"


Nordkoreas Machthaber Kim Jong-un habe angekündigt, sein Land müsse sich sowohl auf Dialog als auch Konfrontation mit den USA vorbereiten, informiert The Guardian. "Kim 'stressed the need to get prepared for both dialogue and confrontation, especially to get fully prepared for confrontation in order to protect the dignity of our state' and reliably guarantee a 'peaceful environment', KCNA reported. The North Korean leader 'called for sharply and promptly reacting to and coping with the fast-changing situation and concentrating efforts on taking stable control of the situation on the Korean peninsula', the agency said."

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"How the 'good war' went bad: elite soldiers from Australia, UK and US face a reckoning"


Amerikanische, australische und britische Eiltesoldatinnen und -soldaten werden beschuldigt, in Afghanistan Kriegsverbrechen begangen zu haben, informiert Ben Doherty. Er beleuchtet, welche Faktoren zu diesen mutmaßlichen Verbrechen beigetragen haben könnten: "The practical culture of special forces operations - small autonomous teams of four to six highly trained troops conducting secretive raids seeking insurgents - contributed to a sense of secrecy, impunity and unaccountability."

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"Eritrean soldiers killed 19 civilians in latest Tigray atrocity, locals claim"


Eritreische Soldaten sollen 19 Zivilisten in einem Dorf in der äthiopischen Region Tigray getötet haben, berichtet Jason Burke. "Troops from Eritrea are fighting in Tigray on the side of Ethiopian government forces, in defiance of international calls for their withdrawal. (…) The reported massacre is the latest in a series of alleged atrocities since the Ethiopian prime minister, Abiy Ahmed, winner of the 2019 Nobel peace prize, launched a military offensive in November to 'restore the rule of law' by ousting the TPLF [Tigray People's Liberation Front], after a surprise attack on a federal army base. (…) Several thousand people are feared to have died in such killings, which have been accompanied by a wave of sexual violence and the displacement of up to 2 million people."

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"Rise of armed civilian groups in Myanmar fuels fears of full-scale civil war"


Seit dem Putsch im Februar seien in Myanmar zahlreiche bewaffnete Gruppierungen entstanden, die sich dem Militär entgegenstellen, bemerkt Rebecca Ratcliffe. "'The people of Myanmar have been left with no other choice. They just have no other option left,' said Dr Sasa, spokesperson for Myanmar's national unity government (NUG), which was set up by pro-democracy politicians. The constant threat of military raids, arrests, torture and killings had pushed communities to take up arms, he said. 'It is just the beginning. The situation will become out of control. Even if it is one man in a village, they will not just bow in front of these murderers. It is the whole country on the road to civil war,' Sasa said."

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"Hard power: Europe's military drift causes alarm"


Zach Campbell, Caitlin Chandler und Chris Jones skizzieren die Kritik verschiedener Akteure am Europäischen Verteidigungsfonds (EDF) und der jüngst beschlossenen Europäischen Friedensfazilität (EPF): "The twin initiatives will bolster the EU's economic and diplomatic influence with a hefty dose of 'hard power', say advocates who also point to the inefficiency of 27 national militaries acquiring their own new weapons systems. But the measures will also benefit the European arms industry by providing research and development funds and new outlets for arms sales overseas. (…) [A] vociferous network of peace activists, critical MEPs and campaigners accuses the EU of abandoning its founding principles and giving in to lobbying from the arms industry for more public funding. (…) Despite its name, the European peace facility, worth €5bn over the next seven years, will allow the EU to provide equipment - including lethal weapons - to non-European militaries. (…) Forty human rights organisations have warned the possibility of providing foreign military forces with lethal weapons would 'risk increasing human rights abuses and contribute to further violence and arms proliferation, rather than to protect civilians and search for political solutions'."

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"US ship fires 30 warning shots after Iranian vessels approach fleet"


Ein Schiff der US-Küstenwache habe in der Straße von Hormus etwa dreißig Warnschüsse abgegeben, nachdem sich 13 iranische Schnellboote einem Verband amerikanischer Marineschiffe genähert hätten, meldet The Guardian. "John Kirby, a Pentagon spokesperson, said the warning shots were fired after the Iranian fast boats came as close as 150 yards (137 meters) of six US military vessels, including the USS Monterey, that were escorting the guided-missile submarine Georgia. The US coast guard cutter Maui fired the warning shots from a .50-caliber machine gun before the Iranian vessels left, Kirby said."

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