AMY GOODMAN: It’s been nearly two months since President Obama took his oath of office to become the 44th President of the United States. In the early stages of the campaign, Obama swept through the primaries, then into the presidency, on the basis of his antiwar message. Has he lived up to the promise?
This week marks the sixth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. To mark the occasion, protests and marches are being called across the country to urge President Obama to speed up the withdrawal of US troops. Under Obama’s plan, troop withdrawals won’t begin until the end of 2009, up to 50,000 US troops would remain in Iraq through 2011. Obama has also not addressed whether the US will keep permanent military bases in Iraq and has made no promises to withdraw the over 100,000 private US military contractors and mercenaries stationed in Iraq.
In Afghanistan, the Obama administration has ordered 17,000 more US troops to be deployed to fight as part of an escalation of the seven-year-old war. This comes as public support in many NATO countries for the continued occupation of Afghanistan is eroding.
In Pakistan, the Obama administration has expanded the covert war run by the CIA and continues to carry out controversial drone attacks inside the country that have killed scores of civilians.
In Iran, Obama has extended a section of US sanctions for at least another year. The restrictions bar US companies from involvement in the Iranian oil industry and blocking trade and investment ties.
In Israel and the Occupied Territories, the Obama administration has continued the US government’s unwavering support for Israel. The administration recently announced it will withdraw its entire $900 million aid pledge if the pending Palestinian unity government does not recognize Israel’s right to exist. No such conditions have been imposed on Israel. This comes in the wake of Israel’s brutal three-week assault on Gaza that left over 1,400 Palestinians dead, more than 900 of them civilians.