JAMES RICHARDS misses the point (Letters, January 9). The Taliban government was corrupt – the US funded it. The government of Afghanistan is corrupt – the US appointed it.

Those resisting the Afghan occupation contain elements of the Taliban, but the term is used to sum up all the diverse political groups – socialists, anarchists, nationalists, atheists, Islamists, Christians, etc – demonising all resistance.

The terms al-Qaida, insurgent or terrorist are further attempts to dehumanise the victims of US imperialism and occupation who have the courage to fight back.

An item on the other morning’s news sums it up: “The maximum sentence for training as a terrorist will be increased to life imprisonment.”

Who on earth could ever believe they were being trained as a “terrorist” rather than as a warrior in a just cause?

Not the US and UK special forces who assisted in the merciless slaughter of 800 Afghan prisoners of war at Mazar-i-Sharif in 2001, nor the detached killers who now launch drones into Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Afghanistan from their office desks, not the slack minded civilians who have supported imperialist brutality for centuries by their silence and indifference.

R Westmoreland, The Oval, Pocklington.