Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Afghanistan: Sexual exploitation of young boys


I watched this on CNN with horror that how very young boys are being exploited for sex. We have heard of the worsening of women's rights and increased drug trade but some how this worsening tragedy of sexual exploitation of young boys has not been fully exposed. It applies to young girls too but the situation is equally bad if not worse for very young boys, especially homeless and poor boys are used as sex slaves. The invading army has done very little or nothing to curb this hideous sexual exploitation. What kind of freedom and democracy are the US, Canada and other NATO countries bringing to Afghanistan?

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56 comments:

  1. Thanks for the link. No I did not know about this story. Very frightening.

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  2. It's a good read. Haven't seen the movie but the book was well worth the time. (perhaps you could ask Santa for it) :)

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  3. The fact is LD, it has been exposed. As far back as 2003, perhaps earlier, the New York Times ran a lengthy article on the return of boy rape in the wake of the Taliban ouster. Canadian soldiers were reporting having to stand by while their Afghan police colleagues sodomized little boys in front of them.

    Ottawa has known about this and turned its back on it during most of the Harper administration.

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  4. MoS, I read your post on the subject matter while ago but I was not aware of the pervasiveness of this crime. After watching CNN piece I did some Internet search and I was flabbergasted how bad the situation is. It is unforgivable that Harper government has turned its back on it. We never had good explanation to be in Afghanistan but through these stories the illegitimacy of foreign occupiers in Afghanistan is becoming more and more obvious.

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  5. What exactly are our soldiers supposed to do about this? They are soldiers not police officers.

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  6. Austin, two points.

    1)Should our soldiers be there?

    2)Taliban banned such sexual exploitations and it returned after the invasion.

    Moreover, the violence against women has gone up too. So what role our soldiers are playing there anyway?

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  7. Austin, when it's your "comrades in arms" doing this, there's a lot you're supposed to do. The reason the Talibs got into power in the first place had much to do with them stopping the warlords who were buggering the villagers kids. With all the other problems we're having being seen as 'occupiers' do we really need to have these villagers watching us doing nothing while their government predators ass-rape their kids?

    Here's one thing those peasants know. If the Taliban is around, no one is going to be messing with their kids' butts. Just like no one is going to be stealing their property or extorting money out of them.

    I'm astonished you even ask the question.

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  8. "1)Should our soldiers be there?"

    No. We as Canadians are not willing to do what it takes to get the job done so bring them home.

    "2)Taliban banned such sexual exploitations and it returned after the invasion."

    Are you insinuating that the taliban are good people? These less than human scumbags throw acid in the faces of little girls who just wanna go to school, they opress women like no other. But to insinuate that this is our soldiers fault or even our PM's fault is pure lunacy. There are international laws, our soldiers and our PM have no jurisdiction to arrest criminals(we have sick people like this in our country too).

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  9. No one is suggesting the Taliban are good guys. They do, however, draw the line at ass-raping kids.

    The acid-tosser was/is Hekmatyar, a Taliban rival who has now cast his lot (and his militia) with the insurgency. He's such an awful guy the Americans - and Karzai - were trying to get him to defect to our side.

    There are no good guys in this business Austin, merely predators and prey.

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  10. "There are no good guys in this business Austin, merely predators and prey."

    Thats what war is. If our soldiers had to follow all the rules and regulations of today in WWII we would all be speaking German.

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  11. It's unfortunately Austin that you don't grasp the nuances of this type of war. There's a political war and a military war. The political war, the war for "hearts and minds" of the public, is the one that matters. As Petraeus has said, once our side loses the hearts and minds issue, for us it's over.

    This is an ancient type of warfare that has been practised since before the days of Julius Caesar. We have recorded histories going back more than two millenia on this difficult challenge. It's like conventional warfare turned on its head.

    You really need to learn something about this asymmetrical warfare business.

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  12. Austin, what have we achieved in Afghanistan. A senior US diplomat who is also a veteran of the Iraq war, Mathew Hoh, has resigned saying the same thing that we are achieving nothing. If our job is to prop up a corrupt government then we’d rather not do that job.

    Throwing acid on women’s face has increased not decreased. We may hate Taliban but the criminal element in Afghanistan was afraid of them and now some of those criminals are in the Karzai government. Karzai was interviewed on CNN by Fareed Zakaria last Sunday and Karzai said that the majority of Taliban are good guys and only a few who are against him are bad guys. So by supporting Karzai we are supporting the majority of Taliban. What is the difference? Are we supposed to go after those who do not support Karzai. It is a very convoluted situation. The Taliban never attacked the US and their interests are very localized, so what do we achieve by killing the opponents of Karzai.

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  13. Umm, just wondering why nobody is calling it what it is, Pedophilia. Or is that culturally insensitive? I mean many Afghan security personelle are on their way to settle in Canada according to the gov. Are they going to bring that culture with them?

    We also know the Board of Inquiry was only formed by the Cons so that our military personnel could respond to questions by saying they can't comment while an inquiry is ongoing. That's what they do, provide bogus talking points. It must be noted that under Sharia Law pedophilia is NOT forbidden. They KILL adult consenting homosexuals but have NO PROBLEM with sodomizing little boys or "marrying" little girls.

    Cultural sensitivity is a weapon being used against us. Call it out. This is nothing less than condoned Child Abuse, in our name!

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  14. LeDaro, I have not said that we have accomplished anything, we have not, I said we should bring our soldiers home because we are not willing to do what is necessary.

    "the war for "hearts and minds" of the public,"

    The Mound, the fact you would even say this shows me you have no idea what it is we are fighting. May I suggest you read a little on Wahhabism, Decent into Chaos by Ahmed Rashid or Chasing a Mirage by Tarek Fatah. These people will stop at nothing to achieve a world wide Caliphate.

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  15. Good point Toe, but cultural sensitivity is just one of our many weaknesses that they are using against us.

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  16. Austin, don't take it from me. That statement was made by General Petraeus who, presumably, knows almost as much about this type of conflict as you claim to.

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  17. While I would never suggest that I know more about warfare than General Petraeus, if he truely believes that instead of being politically obliged to say it then yes he needs an education on what he is fighting. Maybe he could learn something from Sir Charles James Napier.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_James_Napier

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  18. If nothing else Napier is only bettered by Churchill when it comes to quotes.

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  19. “It must be noted that under Sharia Law pedophilia is NOT forbidden.” Toe I know next to nothing about Sharia Law but this sounds odd. Can you provide a quote from the Sharia Law which allows pedophilia? All the evidence is that Taliban did put an end to sodomizing little boys and that is why the villagers like the Taliban.

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  20. Austin, Petraeus is highly versed in all aspects of counterinsurgency. He headed the team of US military and civilian scholars who produced their service's new COIN field manual, FM3-24, which I believe you can still find on the internet in PDF format (free).

    This manual digests the lessons learned in this sort of warfare going back to Caesar and draws heavily on the experiences of the likes of Giap, Guevera and Lawrence.

    I'm not sure that Napier's approach is particularly relevant to this conflict save for those who advocate brutality for its own sake. Remember the Soviets were plenty brutal during their occupation of this place and, remind me, how well did that turn out for them?

    These tribesmen are past masters in brutality. As Kipling wrote "When you lie wounded on Afghanistan's plain, and the women come out to cut up what remains, just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains, and go to your God like a soldier." He wasn't kidding.

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  21. LeDaro, I would like to know where you get your info that the villagers like the Taliban. If you remember there was litterally thousands upon thousands of excited Afghans when thier daughters got to go to school, something the Taliban would never allow. Or the first elections when the mass majority braved the Taliban terrorist threats to vote.

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  22. When the Taliban first came in the mid to late 90's they were the people, that soon changed within a year. When they realized the oppresion they stood for.

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  23. Austin, there was a documentary on MSNBC a while ago where villagers were asked who they prefer. They said not Western forces and ‘infidels’ who they said “are killing us”. Similar documentaries have been shown on CNN where Afghans indicate that they had it with western forces. Some indicated that the Taliban provided them protection. Mathew Hoh is saying exactly the same thing, that Afghans hate occupiers and Karzai’s corrupt government. You can never change a culture through bullets.

    “..there was litterally (sic) thousands upon thousands of excited Afghans when thier daughters got to go to school..” I don’t know where you got that information. There were a few propaganda videos by Bush propaganda operatives and nothing more. You may consider to check this:
    http://www.rawa.org/temp/runews/2008/03/09/afghanistan-violence-against-women-almost-doubles.html

    Tons of other similar materials are available on the Internet

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  24. LD is right on that. Many villagers have come to see the Kabul government and the Western forces as unable to bring the violence to an end, leaving them the vulnerable victims in the middle. This is a classic objective of guerrilla fighters.

    Once the civilian population feels their government cannot protect them they become more willing to give the other side a chance, particularly if it promises order, even tyrannical order. The side we're propping up makes that worse yet by abusing and preying on the peasantry. Sodomizing their kids is just the icing on the cake.

    Guerrilla Warfare 101.

    Yes the Afghan people had high hopes when the Taliban were driven out but we, that is to say Bush, dashed them when he went to play in the sandbox of Iraq leaving Karzai to sort out his fate with the country's warlords. Afghanistan, or at least its government, then turned into what Chatham House (the Royal Institute) now calls a "criminal enterprise."

    That was then. This is now, eight long and futile years later. As Petraeus said at the outset, counterinsurgent forces have a brief shelflife before they go from liberator/defender to occupier/oppressor. We're now increasingly coming to be seen as occupiers and Karzai as our puppet. That links us directly to every bit of corruption in the Kabul government and the fate that has befallen the people.

    The Afghan people have never had time for strangers, even among their own tribes. Look at us and look at them. We're linguistically, culturally, religiously, economically, technologically, socially, politically alien to them. We're infidels. And we're infidels who've outstayed our welcome by an order of at least a few years.

    What began as an insurgency has morphed into a classic civil war. That happened when the Taliban began occupying and administering territory. There is a tipping point to this.

    Austin your suggestion that we follow Napier's notions of brutality are misguided. Right now we're struggling to hold as much support as we can. There is deep popular resentment as it is to the casualties we inflict with our heavy firepower.

    The Taliban, like any insurgents, want every ounce of brutality they can squeeze out of us. Think about it. That's classic guerrilla warfare. It's precisely what drives the population into their arms. It's why they try to provoke us into calling airstrikes on civilian compounds. They do it because it pays rich dividends for them.

    We could easily tip this thing to something akin to the Soviet situation where all the tribes unite against the occupier and we're left defending an unviable, illegitimate nub government in Kabul. The fastest way to get to that point would be to channel the spirit of Napier.

    If the tribes (or most of them) rise up against us we're - pardon my language - we're fucked. Pakistan is fucked almost as badly.

    The real trouble is that we needed to think this through very carefully back in 2002-2003, back when the Bushies could think of nothing but Saddam.

    Here's another pearl from Petraeus - in counterinsurgency, you don't get do-overs. Once you've lost the political war, the war for the hearts and minds of the civilian population, it's over. There's no going back.

    Just because we are us doesn't mean that we're going to win all our wars. We can very easily lose wars. All our our wealth and firepower cannot make up for truly incompetent civilian and military leadership.

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  25. "“..there was litterally (sic) thousands upon thousands of excited Afghans when thier daughters got to go to school..” I don’t know where you got that information. There were a few propaganda videos by Bush propaganda operatives and nothing more"

    I get my information from Ahmed Rashid, there is no brighter mind on the Taliban then him, he was writing on the Taliban well before 9/11.

    I agree that we should not be propping up Karzai and his band of drug dealing dolts. All I am saying is winning this war by winning the "hearts and minds" ended a long time ago when bush jr. did not take it seriously the first time. Now if we want to win it, as Napier said, "The best way to quiet a country is a good thrashing, followed by great kindness afterwards. Even the wildest chaps are thus tamed". Until then bring our soldiers home.

    I would also like to point out that it is no coincidense that no western nation has won a war since the media was allowed to follow.

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  26. And just who is going to get this "good thrashing" Austin? Would you have us go in and thrash the Afghan people themselves? That would surely elicit a lethal blowback from the entire Muslim world, wouldn't it? Do you want us to thrash every Pashtun? You need to think on that for a moment.

    You fail to foresee the consequences of what you advocate. Napier was a pussy when it came to the Russians in giving people a good thrashing. He didn't have the weaponry, the technology, the firepower - nothing remotely approaching the force the Soviets had in Afghanistan. The Speznatz alone would have reduced Napier's force to meat and ashes. So let's try to bring this discussion into some rough line with reality.

    I don't know if you're some sort of Rapture freak but if you want to set the entire Muslim world aflame, attempting to give the Afghan people -Pashtun, Tajik, Turkmen, Hazara, Uzbek - a Napier-style thrashing would be the perfect way to go about it.

    We're not nearly as omnipotent and invulnerable to indulge your sort of fantasies Austin. We would pay a horrible price for what you suggest.

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  27. "He didn't have the weaponry, the technology, the firepower - nothing remotely approaching the force the Soviets had in Afghanistan. The Speznatz alone would have reduced Napier's force to meat and ashes."

    You mean Napier's horses would not have beat Soviet tanks? Well shit there goes my whole argument. If you want to berate me for suggesting what I think it would take to win this war go for it. I never once said that that is what we SHOULD do, I said, I think 3 times now I believe we should bring our soldiers home. We will NEVER win the hearts and minds of the muslim nation, NEVER. Not that either is wrong (although both clearly have thier flaws) but our values and thier values are in stark contrast.

    PS you laugh about the rapture now but 2012 is near.

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  28. Full points for that Austin. By the way, Speznatz wouldn't have needed tanks to take down Napier either. Be that as it may, I think we're selling ourselves short if we simply write off any prospect of finding common ground with the Muslim world. A good first step would be to find ways to stop radicalizing the Arab Street. Maybe, just maybe, if we showed moderate, reform-minded Arabs that we would support their democratic aspirations instead of backing tyrants like Mubarak and the House of Saud we could nurture what we all want in 'friendly' Muslim countries and use that to springboard a democracy movement in the others. Instead we accept their political repression as the cost of ensuring security of our energy needs.

    Bad enough to get your throat cut. Worse when it's your hand holding the straight razor.

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  29. I was away from the computer all this time and I see an interesting discussion continued. Asutin, I agree with MoS. Soviets had more thrashing power than any previous or current invader of Afghanistan and where are they today. Soviet itself disintegrated. What you’re saying is nothing more than hallucination.

    Ahmed Rashid knows something that rest of the world doesn’t. Where are those thousands upon thousands of Afghans and educated girls today? Again someone’s hallucinations. To democratize Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and other neighbouring countries MoS has suggested an excellent solution. The problem is that democracy is the least of the concerns of the US and NATO.

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  30. Yes, for every 100 problems in the mid east, 99 come from the House of Saud. Which is another reason we should bring our soldiers home, no matter what they do America will never even put sanctions on them never mind go to war. Obama included. Wahhabism was born in Saudi Arabia and now that is where all the funding comes from for fanatic schools that are popping up all over the mid east teaching a perverted form of Islam. If we were really fighting a war on terror we would be fighting Saudi Arabia.

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  31. "Where are those thousands upon thousands of Afghans and educated girls today?"

    Well, if they started in grade 3 they would be in grade 7 now.

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  32. "Well, if they started in grade 3 they would be in grade 7 now." May be. We have been there for 8 years and they should be in grade 11. It was all propaganda. To “free women” was one of the propaganda tools used.

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  33. It's all propaganda eh? Ok you believe a American CNN report that went to Afghanistan and talked to random people, I will believe someone who grew up in the tribal areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan and knows the mind set.

    Yes we have been there for eight years but the schools did not just appear there when we stepped foot on the ground. I am not arguing that the Afghan people have grown sick of NATO forces but to suggest they like the taliban is not true.

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  34. Have the reason we have been so unsuccessful in Afghanistan is because the thick headed Bush administration would not listen to people like Rashid, who have more than just opinion, they have life experience.

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  35. Half* the reason... lol

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  36. Austin, which mindset? There are hundreds of mindsets in Afghanistan – a different mindset for every tribe. I wonder which mindset Rashid fellow comes from. We support Karzai and he likes the majority of the Taliban. He said it. What some Afghanis are saying is that they have seen no improvement in their lives and they are suffering more. I suppose they are free to fly a kite now.

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  37. By the way Ahmed Rashid was born in Rawalpindi, Pakistan and lives in Lahore according to Wichipedia. He is not even an Afghan.

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  38. There are so many reason we can not win this war and you have emphasized another. We have only been there for 8 years, this war will take 30-50 years, because we are not really fighting people here as much as a mind set or an idea. It will take generations of education or brain-washing, whatever you want to call it, to win. And things always get worse before they get better.

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  39. "I will believe someone who grew up in the tribal areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan and knows the mind set."

    The majority of the tribal areas do not recognize borders there.

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  40. Austin, I don’t know what your point is but both Rawalpindi and Lahore are not tribal areas. They are way south of Afghanistan. Check a map of the region. Rashid knows as much about Afghanistan as any other journalist from Australia or US. He is western educated.

    “Rashid attended Malvern College, England, Government College Lahore and Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge.” From Wickipedia

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  41. "Rashid knows as much about Afghanistan as any other journalist from Australia or US. He is western educated."

    Lmao. Because someone is western educated they no nothing of thier homeland? You can try to seperate Pakistan and Afghanistan all you want, it does not hold water. The British made that imaginary line. Do you really think it matters to the Pashtuns?

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  42. I don't know what your problem with Rashid is but when that man speaks about the Taliban the smartest and brightest minds listen. His knowledge and opinion is unquestioned, except by you.

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  43. I strongly recommend that you study the map of the region and study where Pashtun live, where Punjabis live, where Pakistan is, where India is and where Afghanistan is.

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  44. I know the area quite well thanks. What you need to understand is that the people from Pakistan are different from Afghans like Ontario residents are different from Saskatchewan residents.

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  45. Austin there is no way we can wage this war for 30-years. We're fighting what has become a civil war. The insurgents are nationalists, not terrorists. Al Qaeda is not the Taliban, never was. Al Qaeda may dream of a global Caliphate but the Taliban were never interested in anything beyond their own borders.

    It's the nationalist focus of the rebel side that has allowed them to expand to incorporate Haqqani's and Hekmatyar's militias and I expect more warlords will follow after the conclusion of the Afghan election fiasco.

    Each faction, warlord or militia that defects to the rebel side shrinks the already tenuous legitimacy and viability of the Kabul government that, like it or not, stands as the measure of our own legitimacy.

    This isn't a matter of fighting a static war for 30-years because that overlooks the critical factor of the momentum building for the bad guys and the lack of same on our side.

    These people won't have us in their country for 30-years. Our presence has already sent some to the insurgency and many more are chafing at what they see as an army of occupation. It's been reported that there's a very healthy pro-Taliban movement among students at the university in Kabul. Nationalism can unite all manner of diverse factions.

    McChrystal is sending out conflicting signals but it's pretty clear that he wants the bulk of his force, even if he gets the extra troops he's sought, to fall back on the key cities. Like it or not, that's a strategy for continued failure.

    McChrystal needs a force of about 600,000 to pacify Afghanistan. He's not going to get it. He knows that. This reality forces him to pick and choose what to defend, where to fight.

    He can't occupy the countryside if that leaves the cities vulnerable. He can, however, attempt to hold the cities and content himself with random sweeps of enemy strongholds elsewhere.

    That reality is riddled with problems and downsides. Defending the cities, while essential, deprives the West of their one key advantage - firepower. In a dark alley an AK-47 is almost a match for an M-16. Narrow, twisty sidestreets negate the usefulness of heavy armour. Heavily populated neighbourhoods rule out the use of artillery and airstrikes.

    When you've been relying on heavy weapons to compensate for being understrength on manpower, going into urban warfare is simply awful. You can't stage a Fallujah in Kabul or any other Afghan city.

    We keep running headlong into walls, some of our own making. As this war enters its ninth year the only strategy we should accept from our generals is one that assures an acceptable, lasting outcome within just another year or two max.

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  46. The only lasting outcome that can happen in the next year or two is for us to leave, let them settle thier civil war.

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  47. Austin, what "people from Pakistan" are you talking about? The Punjabi, the Sindh, the Pashtun, the Baloch or any of the lesser tribes? People in Ontario and people in Saskatchewan tend to be very homogeneous - of European Caucasian descent and culturally aligned. Pakistan is made up of very diverse tribes.

    In the major trouble zones (leaving the Punjabi separatists out of this) you have Pashtun and Baloch who, despite the Durand Line, share an ethnic homeland that straddles the AfPak border. Afhganistan is beset by a mainly Pashtun rebellion. Pakistan struggles with Baloch separatism (a very interesting but unnoticed war is underway there).

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  48. Someday though we will have to finish this war with Islamic terrorists and there will be no hearts and minds to win it will take unforgiving barbaric brutality. These loonies do not fear death they welcome it, but everyman fears something.

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  49. You guys talk like these tribes who have lived beside each other for hundreds or thousands of years are like night and day, that is not the case at all.

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  50. Speaking of loonies, and a little off topic, but I just saw opinion polls for Palin on CNN and she was well over 50% for everything.

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  51. And another thing, with the first election, this last one and the run off one coming up a higher % of people vote in Afghanistn than in Canada so don't tell me they reject our achievments there.

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  52. Austin don't you understand that these tribes represent groups as diverse as Persians, Turks, Arabs, South Asians and Mongols? Just look at an Uzbek for example. They look positively Oriental. Compare a Pashtun to a Hazara. They're not the same. I'll let you in on a little secret - it's no secret to them.

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  53. Well guys, I've really enjoyed our lively discussion but I fear we've flogged this subject to death.

    Thanks

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  54. Mos, I agree. Thank you for your insights and thanks Austin for your input.

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  55. Yes it was fun, until next time.

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