Friday, August 14, 2009

Right to Starve Women - And the Band Played on in Kabul

You know something? We're just going to have to take a big bite out of this shit sandwich we call Afghanistan. Eight years we've been over there fighting to keep this gaggle of sick bastards in power and we can stay another eighty and they're not going to change. They're religious fanatics and warlords and drug lords and common criminals and corrupt bureaucrats and cops.

The Afghan legislature passed a law that allowed a man to beat his wife if she didn't put out on demand. Boy didn't we raise a fury over that! We gave them one up alongside the head, didn't we? For sure. That's why the legislature passed an alternative measure. This time it's "no sex-no food." If a wife doesn't meet her husband's sexual whims, he can deny her food and sustenance.

From The Guardian:

The new final draft of the legislation also grants guardianship of children exclusively to their fathers and grandfathers, and requires women to get permission from their husbands to work.

"It also effectively allows a rapist to avoid prosecution by paying 'blood money' to a girl who was injured when he raped her," the US charity Human Rights Watch said.

You see the problem is to make Afghanistan a viable government we can't just take on the Taliban. We have to crush our friends too. They're every bit as vile. That means we'd be fighting both sides of the civil war that went into intermission when the Americans bombed the Taliban out of Afghanistan in 2001. Fighting both sides - that's what the Soviets tried, and how well did that work out for them.

So kiddies, including all you Afghan war supporters, here's the deal. We're not going to change these people - not the Taliban and not their Northern Alliance counterparts. You can't change one without changing both and we're not interested in doing that are we?

A telling remark this week from Obama's special envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan, Richard Holbrooke in response to reporters' questions about how the United States would know that it has won in Afghanistan. From the Washington Post:

Holbrooke said he preferred to use the word 'succeed' rather than 'win.' So what's success?

"It's really hard for me to address [the question] in specific terms," he said, "but I would say this about defining success in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In the simplest sense, the Supreme Court test for another issue: We'll know it when we see it."

Okay, if after eight years of waging war in a country you can't muster a coherent definition of "success" that's because success is nowhere on the horizon and you don't know if it ever will be. If you can't figure out what you're fighting for, if you can't point to the end zone or even the direction it's in, you're not in it to win and you're not going to win. Eight years, my God.


LeDaro said...

Actually some human rights organizations have pointed out that since invasion in 2001 the rape cases have skyrocketed including those of young boys. Poverty is so bad that parents are selling their young girls to meet the needs. Also addiction to opium has greatly increased with similar outcome as poverty that is parents selling their children to meet the need for their addiction. I am not sure what we are achieving in Afghanistan.

foottothefire said...

Afghanisnam. It will become the damnation of this generation.

Anonymous said...

Just "sick" is the only way to describe it. And off topic but related...anywhere negative attitudes toward women (and that goes on here right in Canada) where women are considered objects of a man's lower half happens because it is allowed. After all men are "programmed" to have sex on demand because it is just the way they many times have I heard women in this country say...."well, he is a man". Afghanistan is not unique. I do agree, we have no business there.

The Mound of Sound said...

You're right on that LD. One thing the Taliban did that helped usher them in in the first place was to rescue little boys from the powerful bastards who had scooped them off the street to bugger them.

Somewhere on this blog you'll find a post about a New York Times article back in 2002-3 that described how, in the wake of the Taliban's departure, child buggery - even by police forces - had returned and was alive and well in that rancid shithole of a country.

50-year old men selling their pre-pubescent daughters to other 50-year old men and, when the kids refuse, they get slammed into women's prisons indefinitely. One of these prisons is just down the road from the main gate of Canada's garrison in Kandahar.

Christian said...

Why do you hate the troops, Mound Of Sound? (wingnut talking point out of the way)

There was a great report from,if I remember correctly, the Online Times, a few months ago highlighting just how deep corruption runs within the current government.

For example, druglords and politicians living side by side in the poshest communities in Kabul. Paying $80,000 to get the job of police chief , on and on. I don't have much time at the moment, but I'll leave a link here when I find it.

Christian said...

p.s, in my previous comment I didn't intend to overlook the obvious insanity of this new legislation, it was more a response to your first paragraph, MOS. Nothing coming out of Afghanistan surprises me anymore.

The Mound of Sound said...

Weak political leadership combined with military careerism creates just the environment for continuous, inconclusive warfare.

If these jokers were a genuine, existential threat to Western civilization does anyone believe we would have put up such a weak, ineffective effort?

I have great sympathy for the Afghan people, particularly the women and children we've let down, but I also have enormous sympathy for the soldiers whose lives we've fed into the gaping maw of this dark farce.

Christian said...

If only I could articulate as well as you, Mound. Great comment.

Here is the link to that report, although I must admit my mistakes. It was the New York Times, and it was $100,000 to become police chief. A worthy read.

The Mound of Sound said...

Hey Christian, thanks for the link. Anyone reading this ought to check it out because it's replete with disturbing anecdotal examples of just how pervasive and debilitating corruption has become amidst our side, our supposed 'friends' in Afghanistan. The one thing that's left unsaid is that it's largely because of the environment we have created with our military presence and our inadequately controlled aid, that this corruption is able to flourish like this.

This disgusting level of corruption requires a helpless population that can't resist these predators. Can we not see how, in doing this, we drive the civilian population straight into the arms of the Taliban?

Christian said...

Hey MOS, if I may make a suggestion? Would you consider sharing that report with a wider audience? You are far more capable of giving it it's due than I am. Folks should know what the hell is going on.

Militant Dipper said...

Well said Mos. The best part is still to come however I fear. The head of Nato has just asked for Canada's troops to stay longer. How long until the joint Harper, Ignatieff press conference where they announce they plan to keep the troops there for another two years? After all it is much too important an issue to fight an election over. It will be done and Canada's nightmare will continue.

The Mound of Sound said...

What do you have in mind Christian? The whole purpose of this blog is to bring information to the attention of others to get people thinking about what's going on and what it might mean. If you have some ideas on getting that out I'm all ears.

MD, I hope like hell you're wrong. Then again I hoped Dion would stick to his absolute bottom line "out in '09" too.

If you go back to my posts at that time I emphasized that these serial extensions were a sham because you can't get NATO and the Pentagon to agree they'll replace you AFTER you've agreed to extend. You have to negotiate that as a condition of extension.

I wrote to the senior leadership of the Liberal Party way back when to make them alive to that point but, if they did understand it, they totally ignored it.

I wrote to Ujal Dosanjh providing a short list of key questions that ought to be raised in the parliamentary debates on Afghanistan. Not so much as a 'thank you' and not one of those questions was raised.

It's one thing when the other team pulls this crap but when it's your side popping the sleeping pills it's stomach churning.

Christian said...

Morning mos, sorry for the confusion, I wasn't very clear yesterday in my last comment.

I had to take off for the rest of the day and just wondered if you might create a new entry focusing on the Times story, simply to give it a wider audience.