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A Different Perspective.. An Insight From AnAfghan  
User currently offlineZanadou From South Korea, joined Nov 2000, 342 posts, RR: 0
Posted (12 years 11 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 1312 times:

I am thinking some people from the US don't want to hear this, that is
fine.. but please just try and read it once..
T

Please forward:

This is important insight from an Afghani-American writer, Tamim
Ansary.

Date: 2001-09-14

"I've been hearing a lot of talk about 'bombing Afghanistan back to
the Stone Age.' Ronn Owens, on KGO Talk Radio today, allowed that this
would mean killing innocent people, people who had nothing to do with
this atrocity, but 'we're at war, we have to accept collateral damage.
What else can we do?' Minutes later I heard some TV pundit discussing
whether we 'have the belly to do what must be done.' And I thought
about the issues being raised especially hard because I am from
Afghanistan, and even though I've lived here for 35 years I've never
lost track of what's going on there. So I want to tell anyone who will
listen how it all looks from where I'm standing.


I speak as one who hates the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden. There is no
doubt in my mind that these people were responsible for the atrocity
in New York.
I agree that something must be done about those monsters. But the
Taliban and Ben Laden are not Afghanistan. They're not even the
government of Afghanistan. The Taliban are a cult of ignorant
psychotics who took over Afghanistan in 1997. Bin Laden is a political
criminal with a plan. When you think Taliban, think Nazis. When you
think Bin Laden, think Hitler. And when you think 'the people of
Afghanistan' think 'the Jews in the concentration camps.' It's not
only that the Afghan people had nothing to do with this atrocity. They
were the first victims of the perpetrators. They would exult if
someone would come in there, take out the Taliban and clear out the
rats nest of international thugs holed up in their country. Some say,
why don't the Afghans rise up and overthrow the Taliban?


The answer is, they're starved, exhausted, hurt, incapacitated,
suffering. A few years ago, the United Nations estimated that there
are 500,000 disabled orphans in Afghanistan--a country with no
economy, no food. There are millions of widows. And the Taliban has
been burying these widows alive in mass graves. The soil is littered
with land mines, the farms were all destroyed by the Soviets. These
are a few of the reasons why the Afghan people have not overthrown the
Taliban.


We come now to the question of bombing Afghanistan back to the Stone
Age. Trouble is, that's been done. The Soviets took care of it
already. Make the Afghans suffer? They're already suffering. Level
their houses? Done. Turn their schools into piles of rubble? Done.
Eradicate their hospitals? Done. Destroy their infrastructure? Cut
them off from medicine and health care? Too late. Someone already did
all that. New bombs would only stir the rubble of earlier bombs. Would
they at least get the Taliban? Not likely. In today's Afghanistan,
only the Taliban eat, only they have the means to move around. They'd
slip away and hide. Maybe the bombs would get some of those disabled
orphans, they don't move too fast, they don't even have wheelchairs.
But flying over Kabul and dropping bombs wouldn't really be a strike
against the criminals who did this horrific thing. Actually it would
only be making common cause with the Taliban--by raping once again the
people they've been raping all this time.


So what else is there? What can be done, then? Let me now speak with
true fear and trembling. The only way to get Bin Laden is to go in
there with ground troops. When people speak of 'having the belly to do
what needs to be done' they're thinking in terms of having the belly
to kill as many as needed. Having the belly to overcome any moral
qualms about killing innocent people. Let's pull our heads out of the
sand. What's actually on the table is Americans dying. And not just
because some Americans would die fighting their way through
Afghanistan to Bin Laden's hideout. It's much bigger than that folks.
Because to get any troops to Afghanistan, we'd have to go through
Pakistan. Would they let us? Not likely. The conquest of Pakistan
would have to be first. Will other Muslim nations just stand by? You
see where I'm going. We're flirting with a world war between Islam and
the West.


And guess what: that's Bin Laden's program. That's exactly what he
wants. That's why he did this. Read his speeches and statements. It's
all right there. He really believes Islam would beat the west. It
might seem ridiculous, but he figures if he can polarize the world
into Islam and the West, he's got a billion soldiers. If the west
wreaks a holocaust in those lands, that's a billion people with
nothing left to lose, that's even better from Bin Laden's point of
view. He's probably wrong, in the end the west would win, whatever
that would mean, but the war would last for years and millions would
die, not just theirs but ours. Who has the belly for that?
Bin Laden does. Anyone else?


Tamim Ansary
___________________

--->Zanadou!  Big thumbs up

4 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAlpha 1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (12 years 11 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 1295 times:

Outstanding article. Articulate, well thought-out, and guess what? I think he's right. I hate to say this, but to get rid of this menace ,you may have to fight the whole Islamic world. And if that's what's needed to stop the kind of slaughter we saw last week, then maybe that's what needs to be done.

User currently offlineEIPremier From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1549 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1277 times:

Somebody also sent this article to me via e-mail, and I actually wrote back to personally thank that person for forwarding this to me.

The points made by the author largely support my own thoughts on the subject. But of course, it means a lot more to hear from someone with personal connections to the country.

And I totally agree with his point that bin Laden WANTS the US to respond with millitary force. He knows that he cannot destroy the US with terrorism alone...he is merely using it as a means of incitement. What he really wants is for the US to wage war against the Fudamentalist countries and LOSE, thus vindicating his religious ideals.

My only fear is that if we do not respond, bin Laden will himself formulate a far greater and more destructive "lure" to the US.


User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 1264 times:

Well, its clear that mr ansari's article is lost on some of the bright bulbs on this forum.

You say "to fight this menace, you have to take on the whole Islamic world?" Do you have any clue as to what the civilian and military casualties will be? The polarization of moderate Muslim states in the Middle East will be one political casualty, let alone the total lack of support among most democratic nations in the world. And just what do you think will happen to America's control on Saudi oil fields? Currently the Saudis are propped up by a shaky coalition of US military interests and conservative clerics. If the latter forego their support for the house of Saud, all of Saudi Arabia's oil fields will turn into a no-entry zone for US interests. What else could happen? Radicalized right wing Islamic forces in the Pakistani military could take over the government there and gain access to the Pakistani nuclear arsenal which they are just itching to use against India in their "liberation" war over Kashmir. Good grief...the possibilities for a potential armageddon are endless.

I'd love to see a scenario in which the US moves into Afghanistan, rids it of the Taliban and restores a semblance of civic life that prevailed there before 1978 when Kabul was a beautiful city with lush orchards, wonderful food, and beautiful charming people. However, I doubt if we in the US have the will or the need to do that. And even if we did, we could certainly not prevail against an unofficial army of hundreds of thousands who have beaten a Soviet military force with fewer scruples than ours. If we do go into Afghanistan and if the international press report pictures of blown up bodies of women and children, all hell will break loose.


User currently offline747-451 From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 2417 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 1245 times:

"If we do go into Afghanistan and if the international press report pictures of blown up bodies of women and children, all hell will break loose....."-Jaysit

Hell has already broken loose with the pictures of blown up bodies of truly innocent women and children (as well as office workers, fire, police etc)...in Several large buildings ( the entire WTC, One Liberty Plaza, The Millenium Hotel, AmexBuilding, 200 Vesey St etc...) in NY and 4 airliners...where is the outrage over this? Isn't an office worker in a building or a 4 year old child on a plane "worthy of sympathy" like women and children in another place? ( I would hope so)What exactly did they do to bring this on? (really I'm not suprised that someone would say this, since this board is generally Anti US or anti Europe)... andd just as our "inncents" have died, unfortunately so will others, not only "here" but "there" as well...a sad fact; but they named the game and we have to play it. If innocnets die in Afghanistan, the blood will be on the Taliban and bin Ladden and no one elses...

It amazes me how some people put such a "spin" on this...In a "war" everyone's a victim and don't loose fact that this is 5000+ killed at the whim of a well supported zealot with sympathisers from many so called "moderate governments".

And if what passes does, so be it, because after these vile acts, nothing will stop it. Several of these parties involved are incapable of any negotiation; their regiemes, whose concepts of moderation and justice, are lost on mindless despotism, which is already consuming larger and larger parts of the "free" world. They should be stopped, since their "way" is not the will of everyone else and they have no right to instill it on others who do not want it....no one should be cowered into this kind of blackmail. Terrorism is disgusting and doing it at the behest of "God" is reprehensible...




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