Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Storm Track Appeasement: Ready for the New Islamic Republic of Afghanistan?

It sickens me every time I think of how the Bush administration was either stupid or sold their democratic principles down the river. Bush and the neocons have beaten the drum to death that the only way to stop terrorism is to democratize Islamic countries. But what they have done is only appease the Islamists and squandered the victory we had.

As many have pointed out, we have already lost the war goals of Iraq and Afghanistan when both voted into their constitution that these countries would be an Islamic state and be ruled by Islamic law. Now that decision is showing its ugly head.

A Muslim in Afghanistan who stood up for women’s rights not only was arrested but faces the death penalty.

Sayed Pervez Kambaksh has been sentenced by a religious court to death for downloading and circulating a tract that criticised interpreting that the Koran supported the suppression of women. He did this at his university where he is studying journalism. Despite the widespread international condemnation the Afghan Senate has rejected non Islamic views on the matter - and expressed that the secular supreme court should not intervene in the matter though constitutionally he has the right of appeal.

And the grounds for this? What say you President Bush?

Aminuddin Muzafari, the first secretary of the houses of parliament, said: “People should realise that as we are representatives of an Islamic country therefore we can never tolerate insults to reverences of Islamic religion.”

So much for western democracy in Afghanistan.

Now after six years my concern is that we have not far advanced the rule of law that protects the liberty of people from their governments. Of course the Afghan people have a right to their own constitution and the law that they wish to be governed by.

But they do not have the right to expect our troops to die to defend such a constitution, or protect such a government that would allow this punishment on it’s citizens for blasphemy. Either we help build a democratic regime through investment and the blood of our fellow citizens - if that help is not appreciated or the ruling government that holds sway does not appreciate these values we hold dear, then we have no moral obligation towards them.

They have become the enemies of reason, showing an intolerance that Al Qaeda wrought on an international stage. May the international community send a clear signal that in this case human rights matter - and the Afghan government can expect no favours should it allow this student’s execution.

If you want to show support for Sayed Pervez Kambaksh, add your weight to the campaign by urging President Karzai’s government to demand that his life be spared. Sign the e-petition at

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  • Bush's "light unto the Muslim nations" program lies in ruins. But they won't acknowledge it because if they did, they would have to recognize its folly. Not gonna' happen.

    By Blogger John Sobieski, at 9:38 AM  

  • Abdul Rahman escaped his punishment because of the outcry and pressure. Will the same happen for Sayed Pervez Kambaksh? I have my doubts. Right now, so many are focused on these futile primaries.

    By Blogger Always On Watch, at 4:01 PM  

  • John Sobieski is right. GWB's great plan is a failure. One reason is that shari'a law has been written into both the Afghani and Iraqi constitutions. What kind of liberation is THAT?

    By Blogger Always On Watch, at 4:02 PM  

  • Increases in literacy rates (especially female ones) result in decreased fertility rates. There were no girls being schooled before the invasion. Now roughly half of all students are girls - more than the number of all students before the Taliban was removed from power.

    Any act that increases the literacy levels and decreases population growth in a Muslim nation is a victory. That is why it is called the long war.

    Both Iraq and Afghanistan are Islamic nations and were long before America showed up. (Claims of Saddam being a "secular" were propaganda to support his minority Sunni state.) Bringing free press and the right to public expression lets us see that but are not the cause of it. Both nations are seeing repair and/or first time installation of infrastructure. Islamic influence in the legal system is nothing unique to the region and would have been impossible to prevent at this stage while acquiring any form of popular consent. The fact that these issues can make the news and are being discussed in Iraq and Afghanistan is by far a more healthy situation than the before where people were killed and mutilated for criticizing the Ba'athist and Taliban regimes with full support of the state.

    Bringing population expansion down in the Islamic world will result in an aging population and skilled labour shortages which will compete with terrorism for funds and manpower. As oil reserves require more technological innovation and trained personnel to extract, the Middle East oil barons will need to make some tough choices between jihad, maintaining revenue streams and satisfying their discontented populations. Reduced demographic pressures will also require Europe to look to productivity gains since cheap immigrant labour will be harder to import.

    By Blogger Snake Oil Baron, at 3:43 PM  

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