Thursday, November 30, 2006

Here's Why Bush Should Not Have Cut and Run from Afghanistan: Teacher of Girls Disembowelled

Too bad that our boy Bubble Boy refused to concentrate on Afghanistan and finish the job.

But then, Toad-Exploder's always had a soft spot for the Afghan Taliban, has he not? He hosted them so very charmingly in Texas, while they were the world's acknowledged leaders in oppressing women.

Impelled by his overwhelming oedipal issues, George W. Bush cut and ran from Afghanistan, leaving our actual enemy Osama Bin Laden alive, and leaving the Taliban strong enough there to work over time to retake the country.

In service of that aim, the Taliban now are free to do this:

Disembowelled, then torn apart: The price of daring to teach girls
Ghazni, Afghanistan

The gunmen came at night to drag Mohammed Halim away from his home, in front of his crying children and his wife begging for mercy.

The 46-year-old schoolteacher tried to reassure his family that he would return safely. But his life was over, he was part-disembowelled and then torn apart with his arms and legs tied to motorbikes, the remains put on display as a warning to others against defying Taliban orders to stop educating girls.

Mr Halim was one of four teachers killed in rapid succession by the Islamists at Ghazni, a strategic point on the routes from Kabul to the south and east which has become the scene of fierce clashes between the Taliban and US and Afghan forces.

The day we arrived, an Afghan policemen and eight insurgents died during an ambush in an outlying village. Rockets were found, primed to be fired into Ghazni City during a visit by the American ambassador a few days previously.

But, as in the rest of Afghanistan, it is the civilians who are bearing the brunt of this conflict. At the village of Qara Bagh, the family of Mr Halim are distraught and terrified. His cousin, Ahmed Gul, shook his head: "They killed him like an animal. No, no. We do not kill animals like that, it would be haram. They took away a father and a husband, they had no pity. We are all very worried. Please go now, you see those men standing over there? They are watching. It is dangerous for you, and for us."

Fatima Mushtaq, the director of education at Ghazni, has had repeated death threats, the notorious "night letters". Her gender, as well as her refusal to send girls home from school, has made her a particular source of hatred for Islamist zealots.

"I think they killed him that way to frighten us, otherwise why make a man suffer so much? Mohammed Halim and his family were good friends of ours and we are very, very upset by what has happened. He came to me when the threats first began and asked what he should do. I told him to move somewhere safe. I think he was trying to arrange that when they came and took him," she said.

The threats against Ms Mushtaq also extend to her husband, Sayyid Abdul, and their eight children. "When the first letters arrived, I tried to hide them from my husband," she said. But then he found the next few. He said we must stand together. We talked, and we decided that we must tell the children. So that they can be prepared, but it is not a good way for them to grow up."

Ms Mushtaq is familiar with the ways of the Taliban. During their rule she and her sister ran secret schools for girls at their home. The Taliban beat them for teaching the girls algebra.

Link via The Independent here.


Unsane said...

Very very sick. The situation was much better when the soviets were in there.

RTO Trainer said...

You and your readers really need to get educated about this.

Just as one point among many that could be rebutted: What "Cut and Run" do you refer to?

The level of US manning and materiel has never, over the course of OEF, decreased, only increased. In the 6 months I've been in Kandahar, our presence in Afghanistan has grown by another 3,000 troops to 22,000.

You are wrong about everything else too.

No Blood for Hubris said...

Yes, dear wandering Bushist, I do know that. I am being sarcastic--heard of that? My point is that we needed to complete the job in Afghanistan, not wander off to start a second war in Iraq.

Afghanistan is not stable, the Taliban is trying to wrest control again, and Osama is still alive, you know, the guy who ACTUALLY attacked us.

So, get your head out of your ass, boy, and get your head around which party really supports the troops - as in real armor for troops and vehicles, good pay, good benefits, not wasting blood and treasure to take out nonexistent WMDs. 'Cause it's not the party of coWard Bush, honey.

RTO Trainer said...

Osama is a non-entity. It would be militarilly foolish to waste resources on someone who cannot do us harm when there are others who can.

The "Taliban Resurgence" is grossly overplayed by the media. I'm not saying that it's not a problem. I am saying that the troops and I here in Kandahar aren't particularly constrained by their activities and every time the Taliban mass enough to accomplish anything, they get thier heads knocked off in the bargain.

I'm in a combat zone. Were my head up my ass, I'd be dead. Armor for troops is a red herring. We all had armor in 2003. We have too much armor in 2006 (makes it hard to move easily). I'm an E-5. I'm going to be just shy of clearing 6 figures for this 12 month deployment.

You may call em Bill, Robert or RTO, your choice. Please, don't call me "honey." We don't know each other that well.

Thanks for your gracious comments on my other blog. Do you mind if I quote you to Sen Kerry and REp Rangel?

No Blood for Hubris said...

1. I won't call you honey if you'll stop treating me as if I belonged to a class of persons to which I do not belong -- that of "being wrong about everything else."

2. Which quote do you mean?

3. Osama has a symbolic existence, and this continuing existence has political consequences.

4. That you are not concerned militarily about the Taliban resurgence is one thing. That Afghan civilians are successfully being terrorized by these terrorists is quite another. That's what disembowelling is all about, is it not?

5. I hope you're not suggesting that those troops in Iraq who were under the impression that they had insufficient armor, and had their families send armor to them from the states, had their heads up their asses?

6. I think that if all the forces being brought to bear had been concentrated in Afghanistan, rather than in Iraq, it would be stable. Or as stable as Afghanistan gets.

enigma4ever said...

Thanks for posting on this- Afghanistan is a mess- and it is a case of imcomplete ignorant planning on the part of the Bush regime...

RTO Trainer said...

1. I may have to get used to "honey."

2. The comment left at "Papers I'd like to Publish." Was that not you?

3. Symbolism over substance isn't a valid military rationale or doctrine.

4. You're putting words in my mouth. If nothing else, the described event is clear indication that our continued and ongoing presence here (which you denied and still have not acknowledged the truth of) is required.

5. I know in particular of two individuals who, after arriving at Kuwait requested of family members that they be sent body armor. The families were forthcoming, although the armor sent was not up to military standards and was not interoperable with other issued equipment. (There were of course moer than thse two who made such reqursts, I'm only speaking of individuals of my personal acquaintance.) These individials discovered that they had been hasty. Prior to crossing the Line of Departure, they were indeed issued Interceptor Body Armor. There is little doubt in my mind that all the other cases of individuals asking family and friends for body armor had the same experience. Not a matter of heads up asses, simply impatience and slow communications on supply issues and expectations.

6. The forces we have have been workign quite well. There are principles of mass and dispersion as well as adapting to the methods of the opposition, that militate more or less, and the current Taliban "hornet's nest" does indeed clal for more, which is why the US has sent more and NATO is looking for more. But 150,000? No way. No need. One of those principles of mass concerns fratricide. Overdo the forces required and you start hitting yourself.

In addition, you could put 300,000 troops in Afghanistan and you still won't prevent every event as recounted concerning Ms. Mushtaq.

Enigma, Afghanistan is right outside my tent flap. It's got propblems, but they aren't unxepexted, aren't insurmountable, and aren't quickly resolved. You want real, lasting resolution to the problems here and in Iraq, it's going to take at least 20 years. A generation has to grow up embracing the new society.

Just like that quagmire Bosnia/Kosovo where we've been involved for going on 17 years.

In addition, there's very likely to be a low level need for asistance well beyond that. Korea for example? S. Korea has stated that they will be ready to be fully responsible for their own defense in 2012. That will have been 59 years.

No Blood for Hubris said...

1. Oh? Interesting choice.

2. Yes, it was. Also, I'm the only No Blood for Hubris at this time, to the best of my knowledge.

3. No, but symbols are good for winning/losing hearts and minds. Check out the works of the Nazi propagandameisters. Very enlightening. In American terms, think psyops.

4. I support our continued presence in Afghanistan. I think our presence there should not have been diluted by invading Iraq, particularly not invading Iraq to take out non-existent WMDs.

6. Who said 300K troops? The Iraq invasion was ridiculous, tragic, and wholly Oedipal. Do you really think the war in Afghanistan has not been given short shrift compared to Iraq?

Looks to me like there will be partition in Iraq. Kurds, Sunni, Shi'a. Two fundamentalist Islamist states. Charming.

(back to) 5. So, are you saying that one goes to war with the armor and armored vehicles one has, not the armor and armored vehicles one might want?

Next on PM reading list: Hopkirk's "The Great Game: The Struggle for Empire in Central Asia." Could be fun.