Local anti-war group reacts to 'leaks'

July 26, 2010 9:33:54 PM PDT
An anti-war group in Fayetteville is praising WikiLeaks' decision to leak secret documents about the war in Afghanistan.The documents are classified records from the past six years that paint a disturbing picture of the war in Afghanistan.

Quaker House Director Chuck Fager says the military documents confirm what he and other anti-war groups have been saying for years.

"People are asking what's the point," he said. "What is all our courage and sacrifice going for and I'm sorry to say it's going for nothing. That's what we have learned in spades from sources. They can't hardily criticize."

The documents include eyewitness reports that the Taliban used heat seeking missiles against American aircraft. Other documents suggest Pakistan's military helped insurgents, while taking billions of dollars in US aid. And the west underestimated civilian casualties in Afghanistan.

Pakistan and US officials have condemned the documents release.

"It poses a real and potential threat to those who are working hard to keep us safe," White House Press Secretary Robert Gates said.

Army vet Mike Hilliard agrees.

"Trying to protect the country and everything so it's not a good idea," he said.

WikiLeaks got the information from a man believed to be Army Specialist Brad Manning. He is currently in a jail in Kuwait.

Army spokesmen say Fort Bragg commanders have no comment on the papers or their release. ABC11 Eyewitness News received the same kind of response from active duty soldiers and wives.

However, Fager says he's relieved the truth about the Afghan war is finally out.

"I don't see how this is going to stop it unless someone has the courage to say enough is enough," he said. "My feelings right now are for the families of troops killed and wounded and many thousands of Afghan civilians who have been drawn into this."

In the meantime, WikiLeaks says they are reviewing another 15,000 documents for future release.

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