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Zer Netmouse
March 31st, 2009
04:51 pm


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Sometimes the response of oh blast it and similar swearing is just completely insufficent commentary on things like legalizing rape done to a woman by her husband. I have to admit, Afghanistan, I didn't expect better of you. Yet I'm still disappointed.

I call on the moderate politicians in Iran and Afghanistan to take a leadership role in protecting womens rights. I'm sure they can't hear me. But I do it anyway.

I have also written to the white house. They might not care to hear me either.

I sigh.

(5 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:March 31st, 2009 11:48 pm (UTC)
Barack Obama is the most fundamentalist Christian we've ever had as a President. I can envision him having a tough time deciding this one.
[User Picture]
Date:April 1st, 2009 03:43 pm (UTC)
Yes, about the loonies, of course.
But I find myself seeming to be in a small minority on the issue of Afghanistan. I'm for reconstruction. Thirty years of wars have eradicated the infrastructure. Flocks take years to restore, and orchards can take decades. The incredible irrigation systems were developed over many generations; I don't know how much and how long they would take to replace.
But if people can support themselves, they won't need to send sons they can't feed to "madrassas" or support themselves by growing opium.
[User Picture]
Date:April 1st, 2009 04:41 pm (UTC)
Why do you think you're in the minority in supporting reconstruction? Have you written to your congressional representative about it?

I most certainly support reconstruction. I know we've done a lot of reconstruction in Iraq. The MERLN (Military Education Research Library Network) page on Afghanistan indicates the US has an Afghanistan Investment and Reconstruction Task Force, and links like this indicate there are definitely reconstruction efforts under way or anticipated, both by the military and by subcontractors, despite the fact that violence in those areas is disruptive and makes working there dangerous.

What I'm not sure about is that we're taking a useful approach to reconstruction, one that would engage the locals in deciding what to do and how to do it, & hire them to participate and take leadership roles instead of just forking out money to US contractors to go over there and apply foreign processes and objects that the locals may or may not maintain and appreciate after we've left.
[User Picture]
Date:April 1st, 2009 11:56 pm (UTC)
Maybe I'm just older and more cynical. Many billions of dollars, nominally for Iraqi reconstruction, have gone away. Unfortunately, there isn't much construction, re- or otherwise, and at least several tons of money are completely unaccounted for. (The rough rule of thumb is that one million dollars in hundred dollar bills weighs 24 pounds. Two or three military cargo-plane loads of palletized, freshly-printed hundred dollar bills went to Iraq. No one admits to knowing what happened after that. "Tons" of money disappeared is not a figure of speech, it's a matter of record.)
And between getting the email notice of your reply and my having time to reply back, I ran into this news clip.

Real reconstruction would involve money going slowly out into the countryside, in a monitored way, for a long time. It has nothing to do with great contracts for foreign consultants or local gang leaders (the U.S. military replaced one of Karzai's original choices of provincial governor with a gangster), or fleets of new Jeeps and Land Rovers in Kabul.
[User Picture]
Date:April 2nd, 2009 03:51 pm (UTC)


Back to the original comment re: raped Afghany women.

Legalizing rape by one's husband is just the tip of the iceberg. What about the Afghanistan law which requires the imprisonment of rape victims because they are "adulterers"? What about women (Afghany and Pakistani) who are raped as punishment for crimes committed by their male family members? A lovely form of "seizing assests."

Women in these tribes are chattel. Nothing more or less. It's almost entirely inconceivable to me. Perhaps the discussion should be whether or not reconstruction money should be available to those countries doing nothing to stop human rights violations. Gee.. that would be popular.


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