November 19, 2001

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US  warplanes bombed 150 unarmed Afghan civilians over the weekend near a densely populated city outside the Taliban controlled city Kunduz. Terrified refugees fleeing the town of Khanabad told London’s Independent Newspaper American planes bombed the area a few miles from Kunduz seemingly oblivious to the fact that the buildings they were bombing were civilian homes. All weekend huge plumes of smoke rose from the hills on the front lines near the Taliban’s last northern stronghold as B-52 bombers continued to drop their loads of bombs. US war-planes also continue to carpet bomb Taliban controlled areas in Southern Afghanistan. Jeremy Scahill has more.

Afghan refugees in Pakistan’s capital are hiding in their homes as the police step up their efforts to weed out and arrest Afghan nationals without Pakistani visas.  Islamabad ‘s police chief says every day his officers scour the city’s Afghan neighborhoods where about 150,000 refugees live and round up those without documentation. Fariba Nawa has more from Islamabad.
Close to ten thousand protesters turned out this weekend in Fort Benning, George to protest outside the US Army’s School of Americas. 70 were arrested for trespassing onto the base. The School of the Americas, now called the Western Hemispheric Institute for Security Cooperation, or WHISC, trains Latin American soldiers in combat, counter-insurgency, and counter-narcotics. Graduates of the school are responsible for some of the worst human rights abuses in Latin American history. Among the schools graduates are notorious dictators Manuel Noriega and Omar Torrijos of Panama, Leopoldo Galtieri and Roberto Viola of Argentina, Juan Velasco Alvarado of Peru, Guillermo Rodriguez of Ecuador, and Hugo Banzer Suarez of Bolivia. Lower-level SOA graduates have participated in human rights abuses that include the assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero and the El Mozote Massacre of 900 civilians. Melinda Tuhus filed this report from Ft. Benning, Georgia.

Global finance and banking ministers meeting at the G-20 Sumitt in Ottawa this weekend vowed to put an end to what they say is a vast terrorist finance network. World Bank and International Monetary Fund officials called for further trade liberalization which they say will combat global poverty. Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets outside the downtown conference center. The demonstrators say the IMF and World Bank policies are at the cause of global poverty. John Hamilton reports from Ottawa.

The two year old fight for control at Pacifica Radio could be coming to an end. Community radio activists struck a deal with the non-profit network’s board of directors over the weekend. The deal will likely result in the almost immediate return of the program Democracy Now to Pacifica’s airwaves. Network management also agreed to open discussions with freelance reporters on strike against the Pacifica’s Network Newscast and community activists in New York where dozens of staffers at WBAI have been fired or banned. Gareth Schwietzer reports from Washington.

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