Saturday, April 4, 2009

Afghan's Future

President Obama has secured from France and Germany support for his plan for the future of Afghanistan. But not his call for more NATO troops to help secure the nation.

Perhaps that's because German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy are better students of Afghan history. History has shown that it's much easier to "conquer" than it is to occupy Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the U.S. backed government there has just took a step back into medieval times. Taking away rights from women. Including enacting a law which requires a wife to meet her husband's sexual demands.

The U.S. policy of supporting governments that violate human rights without public pressure to the contrary is troubling. This president has vowed to better present the United States to the world. The nation's image would be vastly improved, at the cost of losing support of the government's imposing human rights violations of course, if the president would take a higher moral ground.

It's great that he's closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in an attempt to shed an image of U.S. human rights violations. But Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's failure to raise the issue of human rights when she traveled to China, and the administration's silence on the issue of human rights violations in Saudi Arabia and now, Afghanistan (and other places as well), does little to help promote that feeling of reform further.

So too, must the human and women rights groups sound off. Even if there are political or diplomatic consequences. We owe it to our fellow human beings to take a stand on issues of human rights around the globe.

We talk about issues like this and more weekedays at 5 PM New York time on News Talk Online on


Anonymous said...

I stand by my blog statements from last September: We need to get out of Afghanistan. If we stay there, then we need to completely revise what it is we hope to achieve. I would say the primary thing we could conceivably do to help that country is to build roads and telecommunications infrastructure.

Anonymous said...

I don't think he is really closing Gitmo. He says he will, but it isn't really happening. Just as he says we will withdraw from Iraq, but all those bases and 50,000 troops will stay forever. Some withdrawal. monkey fingered.

Anonymous said...

100% correct. This is when America gets a bad name. When it meets human rights violations with deafening silence. No money, no diplomacy, no help until women are free in Afghanistan. and shame on you Hilary Clinton.

Deborah Young

Anonymous said...

Well, the locals idea of human rights and ours are incompatible; that is hard to know what to do with, really.
The idea of a unified Afghanistan is something of a fiction historically speaking, which is another problem; the Pashtuns could be their own country, but then you dismemeber a nuclear armed state in the process, Pakistan, unless you can throw them a bone, i.e. Kashmir, which the Indians probably wouldn't do, unless you could throw them a bone on Sri Lanka maybe, with the Tamils. Hmm.

Don Rich

Andrea said...

You would think the Women's movement (typically liberal) would be all over Obama and Hilary for this reaction (or lack thereof).

There are so many of what we feel are human rights violations, particularly against women, in Arab countries. There are certain things (like female circumcision) that are horrible, but unless I know what the law really says I can't comment. It seems like the fundamentalist muslim countries give relatively little value to women, but not that long ago our own country struggled in that area too. In some ways I believe we have gone too far to the other side. As the mother of a teenage daughter, the freedom given to many boys and girls these days is frightening!


PS... Gary, JD9587 says to PM him :)