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WITHDRAWAL: US troops officially make their way home from Afghanistan

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The US military withdrawal from Afghanistan is officially underway.

The White House has confirmed that the US military has already begun to withdraw troops from war-torn Afghanistan.

The oval office says it “remains committed to having all personnel out of Afghanistan by September 11, 2021”.

Just under 1,000 troops have already been moved from the country, as well as some government contractors and officials who were based there.

There are fears that the Taliban will attempt to make an attack on personnel being withdrawn from Afghanistan, so the US is unlikely to disclose all of the departure details.

“It is a complex operation and not without risk and it will unfold over the coming weeks.”

General Mark A. Milley, CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF

The Pentagon has temporarily provided B-52H Stratofortress aircraft to U.S. Central Command, the combatant command that oversees American operations throughout the Middle East.

The Pentagon also says a recently deployed U.S. Navy carrier strike group is also aiding the operation.

The withdrawal of 3,000 service members by September 11th will mark the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

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World

North Korea condemns AUKUS security alliance

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North Korea has condemned a new security pact between the US, UK and Australia, saying it could trigger a “nuclear arms race”

A North Korea Foreign Ministry official stated that the Aukus deal would “upset the strategic balance in the Asia-Pacific region”.

The deal will see the US and UK give Australia the technology to build nuclear-powered submarines.

The AUKUS agreement is being widely viewed as an effort to counter China’s influence in the contested South China Sea.

The security pact was announced last week by the leaders of the US, UK and Australia and will cover cruise missiles, A.I technologies and others including the nuclear subs.

“These are extremely undesirable and dangerous acts which will upset the strategic balance in the Asia-Pacific region and trigger off a chain of nuclear arms race,”

said a DPRK Foreign Ministry official referring to the security agreement.

Last week, North Korea carried out two major weapons tests concerning surrounding nations such as Japan.

Those tests included that of a long-range cruise missile and a ballistic missile.

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World

Hong Kong leaders select powerful ‘patriots only’ committee

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Hong Kong’s political elite have begun the process to select the powerful committee that will ultimately choose the city-state’s next leader

5,000 Hong Kong residents are part of the group who began voting on Sunday for the election committee candidates.

The city’s ruling class is voting for a 1,500 seat Election Committee and in December, this committee will appoint 40 of the city’s 90 legislators

In 2021, the group will then pick Hong Kong’s next Beijing-approved leader. 

This election is the first since Beijing implemented major changes to the city’s electoral system , ensuring only Chinese patriots would be eligible to gain a position of power.

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam says “the whole objective of improving the electoral system is to ensure patriots administer Hong Kong”.

Lam continued saying: “I doubt very much that another government or country will allow the public election of people whose mission is to undermine the national interest.”

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Does an apology make it acceptable to kill innocent children? | ticker VIEWS

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The United States Military apologises for mistakeningly killing innocent Afghan civilians, including children, in its recent drone strike

U.S. Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of United States Central Command, is calling the drone strike a “tragic mistake” and says innocent civilians were the victims.

The U.S. military thought it had targeted an Islamic State group’s “facilitator” and diminished an imminent terror threat as it withdrew from Afghanistan.

The US military got it devastatingly wrong, killing ten innocent members of a family, including seven children.

“I offer my profound condolences, It was a mistake and I offer my sincere apology.”

FRAnk mckenzie- head of u.s central command
Frank McKenzie, Head of U.S Central Command apologises

Is an apology enough?

The head of the U.S Central Command has issued an apology. Although, questions immediately emerge on how an apology can ever be sufficient for taking the lives of innocent people.

The world of terror changed after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The members of the extremist group responsible were immediately labelled terrorists. The leaders of the group were hunted down, as they should be.

However, it seems ironic when America “accidentally” takes the lives of innocent civilians, that an apology is supposed to make the chilling miscalculation acceptable.

“America has suffered a black mark on its reputation. This will have affects for a long time to come.”

Bruce wolpe- u.s studies centre
Holly STEARNES ASKS BRUCE WOLPE FROM THE U.S STUDIES CENTRE IF THE U.S WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE

Accountablity for killing innocent civilians

The drone strike killed a longtime aid worker for a U.S group, including two other adults and seven children.

The U.S intelligence was wrong by assuming the aid worker was an imminent terror threat. They decimated the car in front of loved ones and onlookers.

Reports suggest the military is exploring compensation payments for the families of the victims. However, compensation will never bring back their loved ones.

The latest grim miscalculation calls into question the reliability of U.S. intelligence and the safeguards in the controls over the use of lethal drones by the U.S. worldwide.

It casts doubt on the Biden administration’s ability to target threats without a U.S. footprint. There have been no talks if any individuals will be held to account.

This horrible mistake killed innocent people who supported America. Protocols must change to prevent this from ever happening again.

A lasting thought, does this make America terrorists too? According to definition, no.

“Terrorism is defined as trying to change the way of life in a country, and unfortunately the drone attack doesn’t fit that definition.”

oz sultan- counterterrorism analyst

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