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From: "Boyle, Francis" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Friday, October 19, 2001 8:29 AM
Subject: Int'l Law Prof Criticizes US Retaliation (Against Afghanistan)
Professor criticizes U.S. actions
The Daily Illini
America's military retaliation in Afghanistan was not prompted by the terrorist attacks against the United States on Sept. 11, University law professor Francis Boyle said Thursday night.
Boyle, who specializes in international law, believes the United States began military strikes against Afghanistan to obtain extended access to oil and natural gas deposits in Central Asia.
"The people who run this country are cold, calculating people," Boyle said. "They know exactly what they're doing and why they're doing it. The movers and shakers, they've paid tremendous attention to Central Asia and the oil resources there."
The Pentagon is hammering out a deal with the government of Uzbekistan, which neighbors Afghanistan, to build a U.S. military base there, Boyle said.
"Clearly, what is going on in Afghanistan is not self-defense," he said. "Retaliation is never self-defense."
The actions of the United States in Afghanistan constitute armed aggression and are illegal, Boyle said. International law requires that there be a court hearing to determine the guilt or innocence of an individual accused of terrorist acts, as Osama bin Laden is, he said.
Boyle criticized Congress for not creating a panel with subpoena powers to fully investigate the Sept. 11 attacks.
"We are not going to get that investigation," he said. "Yet we are waging a war on Afghanistan based on evidence that Secretary of State Colin Powell said was not even circumstantial."
Muslim and non-muslim countries around the world are condemning U.S. military actions because they are not justified under international law, Boyle said.
He said that attacks by the United States against Afghanistan will result in a "human catastrophe" and predicted that at least 100,000 people will die in the war unless American citizens demand that it end.
The Progressive Resource/Action Cooperative organized Boyle's presentation at the Illinois Disciples Foundation, 610 E. Springfield Ave. in Champaign.
The foundation's board of directors passed a resolution against the U.S. military action in Afghanistan on Sept. 18. The resolution, posted on the foundation's Web site ("IDF Resolution Against US Military Response to Attacks"), stated that the foundation will use its resources to "urge restraint on the part of the U.S. government in this dangerous period of national anger and shock." The resolution further said it will "call upon those bodies responsible for upholding international law to hold the U.S. accountable to these laws in its response to the recent attacks."
"Thoughtless military retaliation against presumed enemies or their supporters and the use of assassination as a legitimized tool of diplomacy will not further or protect civilization, but rather, signal its formal and complete demise," the resolution stated.
Steve Kline, freshman in LAS, attended the presentation and said Boyle's idea of why the United States was bombing Afghanistan was "a complete surprise."
"The way he phrased it it sounded like a very valid explanation," Kline said. "I want to check out some of the facts he presented, though."
Francis A. Boyle
504 E. Pennsylvania Ave.
Champaign, IL 61820 USA