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home : insight & opinion : guest columns
March 30, 2020

3/3/2020 10:09:00 AM
Teaching the Taliban a lesson
For the Daily News

Today in Afghanistan the Taliban are celebrating their victory over the world's largest army. It's annoying for us, but its devasting for the people who live there.

Formed in 1994 to expel foreigners from their country, students of the Koran (talib) organized to battle Russian then American forces. They were and are a dedicated group of religious zealots bent on enforcing Sharia law. They have murdered thousands of civilians, denied women education and basic human rights and destroyed villages and crops to starve rural populations into submission while seizing relief aid and withholding it from those it was meant to save.

A small well armed group has apparently once again demonstrated that ruthless genocide can defeat a technically superior force with lawless terrorism. Of course they insist that God is on their side.

The adminisration has announced a peace agreement with the Taliban which does not include the democratically elected government of the country which we officially recognize. The agreement requires a mutual release of prisoners by both sides to which the government in Kabul has objected.

While full details have yet to be released, apparently the deal bargains the withdrawl of American troops for an end to Taliban terrorist activities in the country.

According to the U.N. the Taliban is also responsible for cultural terrorism by the destruction of thousands of Bhuddist and other temples, historic sights, and places of worship wherever possible.

In retrospect, it appears that their resistance to the modernization of our world has been limited to social justice issues as they pick and choose which teachings of Mohammed to favor and what technologies to use to weaponize them.

Tolerance and intolerance have been at war on our planet since history began to record such disparate visions of what living with others should include. It is difficult to reconcile freedom of worship for all with any religious dogma that speaks of a chosen people having exclusive privileges.

Its a struggle. Its hard to see how those who believe in equal human rights for all can see this withdrawl of our forces as a victory.

Greg Bonelli teaches at Lincoln Trail College and is a regular contributor to the Daily News

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