Maruf Hotak, commenting about the recent protests in Afghanistan in reaction to its largest U.S. base burning Qur’ans and referring to an episode in Helmand Province when American Marines urinated on the dead bodies of men they described as insurgents and to a recent erroneous airstrike on civilians in Kapisa Province that killed eight young Afghans.
From Glenn Greenwald: The causes of the protests in Afghanistan:
The U.S. has violently occupied their country for more than a decade. It has, as Gen. Stanley McChrystal himself explained, killed what he called an “amazing number” of innocent Afghans in checkpoint shootings. It has repeatedly — as in, over and over — killed young Afghan children in air strikes. It continues to imprison their citizens for years at Bagram and other American bases without charges of any kind and with credible reports of torture and other serious abuses. Soldiers deliberately shot Afghan civilians for fun and urinated on their corpses and displayed them as trophies.
Meanwhile, the protesters themselves continue to be shot, although most American media accounts favor sentences like these which whitewash who is doing the killing: “running clashes with the police that claimed the lives of another five Afghan protesters” and “in Nangarhar Province, two Afghans protesting the Koran burning were shot to death outside an American base in Khogyani District” and “protesters angry over the burning of Korans at the largest American base in Afghanistan this week took to the streets in demonstrations in a half-dozen provinces on Wednesday that left at least seven dead and many more injured.” Left at least seven dead: as As’ad AbuKhalil observed, “notice that there is no killer in the phrasing.”
It’s comforting to believe that these violent protests and the obviously intense anti-American rage driving them is primarily about anger over the inadvertent burning of some religious books: that way, we can dismiss the rage as primitive and irrational and see the American targets as victims. But the Afghans themselves are making clear that this latest episode is but the trigger for — the latest symbol of — a pile of long-standing, underlying grievances about a decade-old, extremely violent foreign military presence in their country. It’s much more difficult to dismiss those grievances as the by-product of primitive religious fanaticism, so — as usual — they just get ignored.
You might not agree with my opinion so don’t waste your time reading on.
I absolutely abhor violence and death of any kind. And I am extremely saddened that some have been violent to the point of causing death or serious injury, to both Afghan peoples and US soldiers.
But I think it is ridiculous that some people (like our fine GOP candidates) are surprised and furthermore aggressive about this. Every US life lost is a tragedy. And every Afghan life lost should equally be a tragedy. And just the blind eye of confusion so many have turned to this situation. Confusion over why people are still angry that we just *accidentally burned a book*. No, we didn’t just *accidentally burn a book*. Multiple people in a chain of command had the idiocy and LACK OF CULTURAL COMPETENCY to realize that it was a HOLY BOOK that they ordered and were physically burning.
Desecration of Islamic symbols and the literal tearing up of their country has been occurring non-stop for over TEN YEARS, and that’s not even counting the OTHER WESTERN occupation of Afghanistan. Maybe because I’m a coward, I’d never strike back, but if someone was physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, beating me down every day for 10 years *And this was the only side of them I saw, not their more noble and good aspects, which they do have*, I’d think I’d be pretty justified to be pretty damn angry at them.
First, watch this video clip from the PBS special series called “American Experience: We Shall Remain: Wounded Knee”. The series is about the history of Native Americans, and this segment focuses on an armed Native American protest and occupation of Wounded Knee. They held out for I believe two months before finally caving to pressure from the Federal Government and the death of two of their own from shots fired by the US government. I posted a link to the full video two posts before this one.
But what I want to focus on here is a short part of that film. It’s a clip that when I saw it I couldn’t believe my ears and set me off into a few seconds of blind anger.
Hit Read More at your discretion. You are warned.
I’m reading through Tim Wise’s “White Like Me” and currently on the Reverse Racism Myth section. Seems like a good time to clear up this phrase and how it should be used or not used.
Hit Read More
what kind of “free” country is this?! they practiced peaceful protesting and they’re guilty?
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you should view this PEACEFUL protesting and see what happened.
They’re going to prison for this?