REPEATED instances of the deaths of civilians in Afghanistan at the hands of the American army tells the true story of the attitude of foreign occupation that is desperately trying to defeat a determined resistance movement. That, unfortunately, is also the fate of the poorly armed people who are not willing to compromise on their independence that has been usurped by the mightiest power in the world, which is assisted by a host of European and other Western allies. In an aerial bombardment and ground operation last Monday night, an estimated 100 persons were brutally put to death by the US armed forces. The number of the wounded has not been ascertained so far. Among the dead, only 25 to 30 were believed to be Al-Qaeda or Taliban fighters and the rest were common Afghan people, men, women and children. At least the murder of 20 children has been confirmed. The mass murder must be condemned in the severest terms possible. This was the largest figure of casualties sustained by the poor, ordinary citizens as a result of Washington's callous disregard of Afghan life by a country that keeps churning out reports of human rights violations of other countries. As soon as the US armed forces discovered that they were helpless against the resurgent insurgency by an intrepid local population, the deaths of ordinary Afghans, not involved in the fighting, began mounting. Inevitably, there were accusations of deliberate slaughter. The US pleas that the deaths were unintentional "collateral damage" did not carry much weight even with international agencies like the United Nation. Similar was the fate of regrets because such deaths continued to happen at intervals. Even the government of Hamid Karzai, an American puppet, went public with the grievance and frustration at repeated recurrences. There have been known and acknowledged cases of the shelling of wedding parties, social get-togethers or funeral processions, with scores of casualties. In the face of the US determination to turn the tide of an otherwise hopeless war it is not far-fetched to conclude that killing civilians is a studied policy to force the population to give up its support of the resistance fighters. These are defeatist tactics. The best course for the occupation forces, under the circumstances, is to learn from history, pack up and go home. The policymakers somehow do not realise that the deaths of ordinary people create a groundswell hatred of the US and sympathy for the so-called Taliban. Their purpose of putting down the insurgency and capturing top Al-Qaeda leadership inevitably goes beyond reach.