Anthropologists at war by mattsteinglass
November 6, 2008, 7:34 pm
Filed under: War

Foreign Policy points to the latest grisly death of non-military Western personnel in Afghanistan. This time it’s anthropologists:

An Afghan national in Meywand, Khandahar province, reportedly doused a U.S. civilian working with the U.S. military with a flammable liquid and lit the worker on fire. Another U.S. civilian then shot and killed the attacker….The U.S. civilians were working with teams of anthropologists and psychologists that help the U.S. military with cultural awareness.

FP also refers to a debate it hosted over the issue of whether anthropologists could legitimately work for the Pentagon. One issue that didn’t come up in that discussion seems rather germane here: if some anthropologists work for the US military, all anthropologists will be assumed by opposition forces to be working for the US military, whether they admit it or not. And they will all become targets.


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