Kabul/ Seyyed Khodaberdi Sadat, Bilal Guler/ Anatolia
Afghans spoke to Anadolu Agency about the deep wounds in their hearts due to the loss of their loved ones during the 20 years of American occupation of their country.
Akram Khan: “My pain is still alive, and I want a serious investigation and punishment for the perpetrators of this crime.”
Zainab Khan: “American soldiers broke through the wall and broke into our house and killed 3 of my sons in front of my eyes. They tortured and took my fourth son with them.”
Zabania Khan: “With my husband’s death I have deprived myself of all the reasons for happiness.”
Yusuf Khan: “I could not even attend the funeral of my three brothers because they detained me for 18 days. I want justice and punish the perpetrators.”
Zubeida Safi: “The United States must pay reparations for the murders committed during the invasion of Afghanistan.”
Afghans still remember the United States of America, with much pain stemming from the deep wounds inflicted by Washington over the 20 years of its occupation of Afghanistan.
On October 7, 2001, the US-led coalition forces invaded Afghanistan, under the pretext of harboring the Taliban movement that ruled the country from 1996-2001 to Osama bin Laden, the leader of the terrorist organization Al-Qaeda, responsible for planning . and carrying out the attacks of September 11, 2001.
But those forces returned and withdrew from Afghanistan in mid-August 2021, ending two decades of occupation.
Due to the American policy which comes under the name of “fighting terrorism”, thousands of civilians have lost their lives due to the military operations carried out by the United States during this period in Afghanistan.
While more than 47,000 civilians lost their lives in armed conflicts during the years of occupation, the number of Afghans who worked with the United States and killed 3,846 people, while more than 2,400 American soldiers were killed.
Although the US military presence in Afghanistan has ended with the withdrawal of US soldiers, the suffering of Afghan families who have lost their children, fathers, mothers and relatives has not yet ended.
To shed light on this humanitarian aspect of the repercussions of the war in Afghanistan, the Anatolia correspondent met a number of Afghan citizens who lost family members during the military attacks carried out by the US forces in Afghanistan.
Baba Khan awaits “punishment of the perpetrators”
Father Muhammad Akram Khan, whose three sons were killed in a night operation by US soldiers in the village of Futapur in eastern Afghanistan’s Kunar province in 2018, said he still feels great pain over the loss of his sons.
Akram Khan indicated to the Anatolia Correspondent that the American soldiers carried out an operation in the village in which they live under the pretext of “fighting terrorism”, and that his house was also raided during the aforementioned military operation.
Stating that he was in the capital, Kabul, during the operation, he said: “I couldn’t even attend my children’s funeral because the roads were not safe. It hurts me more.”
And he indicated that American soldiers killed his sons, “Abdullah, 12 years old, Abdul Qahar 20 years old, and Abu Dhar 26 years old, without mercy in front of their mother.”
Akram Khan emphasized: “My pain is still alive, and I want a serious investigation and punishment for the perpetrators of this crime.”
As the mother, Zainab Khan, described the night of her children’s murder, she said: “After my children ate, they went to their rooms to sleep, and minutes later American helicopters landed on the town, I could don’t understand what happened.”
And she continued, “A short time later, the American soldiers broke through the wall, broke through the doors and entered our house, and shot 3 of my sons before my eyes, torturing them and taking another son with them. “
Zainab indicated that “even after many years, she still cannot forget that moment”, and that her pain over the loss of her children “cannot be compared to any pain”, and that her life “became meaningless” after she lost her children. .
“With my husband’s death, I took away the reasons for happiness.”
For her part, Zabania Khan, Abu Dhar’s widow, indicated that American soldiers killed her husband in front of her, and that since that day she has been suffering from “psychological problems due to the trauma” she was exposed to.
“I am currently trying to be a mother and father to two children aged 11 and 12, a boy and a girl,” she said.
And she continued: “With my husband’s death you have robbed me of all the reasons for happiness. I cannot be happy anymore. I try to make a living by working in the fields. What I think about most , is the future of my children.”
– ‘I want justice’
For his part, brother Yusuf Khan told Anadolu Agency that he was at home “when the American forces raided the house”, and that he was “severely beaten” by the American soldiers.
He continued, “After the American soldiers killed my three brothers, they tortured me and took me to Bagram Air Base, where I was held and tortured in a prison at the base for 18 days.”
He added, “I couldn’t even attend my brothers funeral. On the nineteenth day they released me without telling me anything. I want justice and punish the perpetrators.”
“I want the atrocities committed by the United States in Afghanistan to be highlighted,” said Yusuf Khan. “Thousands of similar incidents have occurred across the country and have been covered up.”
“I saw my husband’s mutilated body”
Zubeida Safi, on the other hand, spoke of her grief and trauma over the death of her 40-year-old husband in the same village in 2015, as a result of an American drone strike.
Safi said her husband, Zain Allah al-Rahman, was “a simple farmer, and he was bombed by an American drone in the summer of 2015, when he was working in the field.”
She added: “Immediately after the attack, a neighbor said the field where my husband was working had been bombed. I ran to the field and found my husband’s body cut into pieces. I can’t forget that moment.”
“I am currently struggling to survive with my two daughters aged 15 and 17,” she said.
And she added: “My husband was killed without guilt. I demand an investigation and punishment of the perpetrators.”
Safi believed that “the United States should pay reparations for the killings committed during the invasion of Afghanistan.”
On September 11, 2001, small groups of al-Qaeda hijackers seized 4 planes that had taken off from New York, Boston, and Washington to San Francisco and Los Angeles, and used them to attack prominent buildings in New York and Washington.
And two planes hit the World Trade Center towers in New York, while the third plane destroyed the western facade of the US Department of Defense (Pentagon) in Washington.
The fourth plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania, and it is believed that the hijackers planned to use it to attack the Capitol building in Washington, DC.
The attacks resulted in the deaths of 2,977 people.
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