The boy-raping country our forces are fighting and dying for

Afghanistan probably has the most pederastic culture on earth—yet we think we have some big investment in whether one group of Pashtun pederasts runs the country or another. See Diana West’s article, which in turn is based on Joel Brinkley’s reporting in the San Francisco Chronicle.

- end of initial entry -

Ron L. writes:

Pederasty is an old custom in Afghanistan. Some Islamists and Orientalists claim it is a cultural reminant of Alexander the Great’s conquest of the region. They note that it is most prevalent in the Pushtun regions around Kandahar (Iskandaria/Alexandria). Regardless of the truth of its origins, “Bacha Bazi” is a major recruiting tool for the Taliban as the syncretic forms of Islam in the region allow for this custom. The Taliban originally took up arms over rape of women and boys by warlords. Of course once in power many Taliban leaders also committed rape.

To call Afghanistan “medieval” is to insult the European Dark Ages. We cannot modernize them by force or bribe. We should destroy the Taliban and Al Qaeda and leave.

August 31

Sophia A. writes:

The pederasty in Afghanistan is not news to our soldiers.

September 1

Ferg writes:

In a sort of rebuttal let me say I have a personal friend who spent thirteen months in Afghanistan as an Army major in charge of a public affairs team. He loved his time over there and made many friends and met many people he admired. We had a welcome home party for him when he got back (he is a Reservist who volunteered for deployment), and I was just overwhelmed with all of the gifts and mementos he brought back, including letters from mayors and sheiks complete with translations courtesy of the U.S. Army. There were hundreds of photos of him with various Afghan groups, tribes, village councils, school teachers, etc. He had a positive glow from the experience and I could tell he felt he had been doing God’s work over there.

Now none of this means in and of itself that our policies over there are right ones, or that we are making progress over all. It does seem to indicate that if you view such things one victory at a time, he certainly was in on some victories. Is it enough? Probably not, but it would be hard to convince him that his efforts were wasted. He later volunteered for not one, but two deployments back to back in Iraq where he was involved in the same type of work. When he returned he was not as enthused by his experience as he had been with Afghanistan, but still thought what he was doing was worthwhile. He is a married man with two children and no friend of pederasty so I doubt he would have approved and I think he would have said something if he had known of it. I don’t know what to make of it all, as I admire Charles very much. He and I are members of the same debating society and I can testify he has a keen intellect. I doubt he has somehow been duped given the amount of time he has spent over there.

I offer this for whatever it may worth to your readers, as perhaps a balancing perspective.

LA replies:

As I see it, your friend’s experience typifies a certain illusory thinking that takes over Americans when they get involved in helping Muslim countries. Soldiers are assigned to develop relationships with local communities in various ways, whether in building and improvement projects, military training and cooperation, or other activities. In the process, the Americans, especially the officers, get close to various local leaders and others in these Afghan or Iraqi villages. The fact of developing these relationships is humanly fulfilling, it puts a glow on the Americans’ faces. The Americans then project their successful and fulfilling experience of one-on-one cooperation with local people in Afghanistan or Iraq into some larger success of U.S. policy in Afghanistan or Iraq as a whole. But this is a fantasy, a kind of optical illusion. The fact that a U.S. Army major gets along with people in an Afghan village does not mean that Afghanistan as a country is developing democracy or building self-government or becoming pro-Western or acquiring the will and ability to defeat the Taliban on its own.

A similar illusion operates vis a vis people’s attitudes toward diverse immigration. Americans have various positive one on one relationships with various immigrants whom they know, and thereafter see the immigration issue solely through the lens of that personal experience, having no grasp of the larger negative effects of immigration on our society as a whole. Everything comes down to personal experiences, personal relationships, and feelings.

As I wrote in Huddled Clichés:

Since immigration is a vast phenomenon involving millions of human beings, it would be astonishing if there were not many good and wonderful things to be said about it. And these things have, of course, been said for many years, but in such emotional and all-embracing terms that they paralyze critical thought.

Michael S. writes:

Regarding Ferg’s testimony about his friend’s experience in Afghanistan/Iraq:

First, does it occur to either Ferg or his friend that perhaps the locals in Afghanistan deemed it useful to make nice with a senior officer? Is Major Charles an evangelical?

Second, a reservist with a wife and children volunteering for multiple tours? Doesn’t this man recognize his responsibility to be at home? How does he arrive at the conclusion that the “work” he is doing in Afghanistan/Iraq is more important than being a father to his own children day in, day out?

Ferg writes:

“I offer this for whatever it may worth to your readers, as perhaps a balancing perspective.”

It’s not worth a darn thing, Ferg. All it tells me is that your friend is off-balance.

September 2

James N. writes:

The entire disastrous history of Europe and America’s engagement with the savage and barbarian societies of the world (India possibly excepted) was caused by, and continues to be caused by, the appeal of the “talented tenth.”

Missionaries, conquerors, and reformers always can find someone, anywhere, who is “just like me (us) under the skin.” This phenomenon is accentuated by the fact that talented third-worlders with above average ambition SEEK OUT the missionary, the colonel-in-charge, the NGO official because of their hopes of escaping barbarism and savagery.

But the fact remains that the Congo is not, and cannot be, Mayfair. It’s NOT A Small World After All.

What now becomes clear is that the transfer of civilizational values is not one-way. Just turn on the radio.

So, of course, even in deepest Pashtunistan, there are gentle souls who can look good in a suit and tie. But others are waiting to walk through the open door.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at August 30, 2010 05:44 PM | Send

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