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Old 1st September 2021, 01:54 PM   #161
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
The rape and murder that the Taliban Americans commit are not isolated. And they are ideologically motivated.
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
There have been ideologically evil regimes, but the Taliban USA isn't one of those regimes, because reasons.
See how easy it is?
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Old 1st September 2021, 03:59 PM   #162
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
You are wrong. For the Taliban, it is about religious piety. It's true that crimes like rape have non-religious motivations, but that isn't disqualifying. Their religion still provides justification and encouragement to do those things. The fact that they may have no-religious motives as well doesn't make the religious motives irrelevant. Most human behaviors have multiple motivations.



If you haven't noticed, the Taliban's religious beliefs are incredibly sexist, so again, that's not exactly disqualifying.



The rape and murder that the Taliban commit are not isolated. And they are ideologically motivated.
The quoted cases are isolated. Many are not actually by the Taliban, but by allied forces e.g. the Haqqani network. Remember the Taliban have been at war for decades, first against the Soviets the against the US. I am sure you can pull out occasional atrocities. What you cannot do is show that there is systematic mass rapes of whole populations and genocidal murder such as happened e.g. in ex-Yugoslavia.

Please find any examples of he Taliban arguing for rape and murder of children. It certainly is not justified from a religious argument. The Taliban actually have a tip line where they ask people to anonymously report abuse by their military. In reality the Taliban have little control over the local militias and none over the Haqqani network which are the most powerful military group.

That they are sexist is true. But that is not unique to Islam, Christian and Jewish sects can be very sexist. Jewish ritual cleanliness rules and rules of modesty requiring women to cover their hair etc. are similar to 'orthodox' Islamists like the Taliban.

I wonder if you are confusing the Taliban with IS? Certainly mass murder and sexual slavery were a feature of IS activity in Iraq / Syria before Iranian forces defeated them. It is certainly true they did create a religious justification for sexual slavery. The Taliban have never made a similar case.

One thing I think that will make the Taliban different from twenty years ago was that then they were predominantly people coming out of a rural tribal background with very traditional views. Since then the senior Taliban leaders have been in exile, living in a more cosmopolitan Islamic nation. They will have interacted with a broader range of scholars than when they were based in AfPak. An example of their change is that they are quite accommodating of Shia groups, appointed a senior Shia cleric as governor of a predominantly Shia district and have condemned attacks on Shia by ISIS.
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Old 1st September 2021, 04:05 PM   #163
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You know who's enjoying a great deal of schadenfreude over Afghanistan?

Vladimir Putin.
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Old 1st September 2021, 04:13 PM   #164
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
The quoted cases are isolated. Many are not actually by the Taliban, but by allied forces e.g. the Haqqani network. Remember the Taliban have been at war for decades, first against the Soviets the against the US. I am sure you can pull out occasional atrocities. What you cannot do is show that there is systematic mass rapes of whole populations and genocidal murder such as happened e.g. in ex-Yugoslavia.

Please find any examples of he Taliban arguing for rape and murder of children. It certainly is not justified from a religious argument. The Taliban actually have a tip line where they ask people to anonymously report abuse by their military. In reality the Taliban have little control over the local militias and none over the Haqqani network which are the most powerful military group.

That they are sexist is true. But that is not unique to Islam, Christian and Jewish sects can be very sexist. Jewish ritual cleanliness rules and rules of modesty requiring women to cover their hair etc. are similar to 'orthodox' Islamists like the Taliban.

I wonder if you are confusing the Taliban with IS? Certainly mass murder and sexual slavery were a feature of IS activity in Iraq / Syria before Iranian forces defeated them. It is certainly true they did create a religious justification for sexual slavery. The Taliban have never made a similar case.

One thing I think that will make the Taliban different from twenty years ago was that then they were predominantly people coming out of a rural tribal background with very traditional views. Since then the senior Taliban leaders have been in exile, living in a more cosmopolitan Islamic nation. They will have interacted with a broader range of scholars than when they were based in AfPak. An example of their change is that they are quite accommodating of Shia groups, appointed a senior Shia cleric as governor of a predominantly Shia district and have condemned attacks on Shia by ISIS.
The Taliban harbored Bin Laden. Every other evil attributed to them is a red herring. As far as I'm concerned, they're welcome to Afghanistan, and the other Afghanis are welcome to them. Whatever. How they all sort out their business between themselves is not and should not be our problem. Making it our problem for the past 20 years was a huge mistake.

All I would have asked, from Bush, Obama, Trump, and Biden, is that we withdraw in good order, and not like a bunch of clowns piling out of a clown car. Too late now, of course.
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Old 1st September 2021, 04:25 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
There have been ideologically evil regimes, but the Taliban isn't one of those regimes, because reasons.
Because they're freedom-fighting liberators- according to their twitter feed and Useful Idiot community.
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Old 1st September 2021, 04:47 PM   #166
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Ah, Good Old Uncle Sam, defender of truth, justice and the American Way. World's policeman, and all round protector of democracy.

Home of the brave, I believe it even says in their national anthem.

Bravely helping the Taliban by providing a useful kill list: https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/afg...PBE7CXRO3OAL4/

Quote:
A Politico report confirmed by Fox News said US officials gave the Taliban a list of American citizens, green card holders and Afghan allies in a bid to grant them entry to Kabul airport.
And this will shock you, but I'll post it anyway:

Quote:
President Joe Biden has acknowledged that "there may have been" such a list.

"Basically, they just put all those Afghans on a kill list," one defence official told Politico.
USA, morally superior....

Maybe that should be "repugnant".
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Old 1st September 2021, 04:54 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
You know who's enjoying a great deal of schadenfreude over Afghanistan?
The same people who have been cheerleading 12th century style religious brutes for decades as long as they're fighting the great Satan, while posturing as progressive?
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Old 1st September 2021, 05:42 PM   #168
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Originally Posted by trustbutverify View Post
The same people who have been cheerleading 12th century style religious brutes for decades as long as they're fighting the great Satan, while posturing as progressive?
I love the way Americans have an inherent inability to accept that both sides can be wrong, and that pointing out the sins of one side does not mean support for the other.

The enemy of my enemy is not my friend, they are both my enemy.

But nice try.
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Old 1st September 2021, 05:49 PM   #169
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You asked a question:

Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
You know who's enjoying a great deal of schadenfreude over Afghanistan?
I answered it accurately. The rest of your reply is self-serving childishness.
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Old 1st September 2021, 05:54 PM   #170
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Originally Posted by trustbutverify View Post
I answered it accurately.
No, you made up a strawman.

Big difference.
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Old 1st September 2021, 05:58 PM   #171
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
No, you made up a strawman.
No- I answered your question accurately. You might not like the answer... but who cares?
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Old 1st September 2021, 06:39 PM   #172
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Originally Posted by trustbutverify View Post
No- I answered your question accurately. You might not like the answer... but who cares?
Me.

Can you show me where these people are?

Quote:
The same people who have been cheerleading 12th century style religious brutes for decades as long as they're fighting the great Satan, while posturing as progressive
For the life of me, I can't think of anyone who conforms to that, but you're clearly in the know of some since you're so vehement that it's correct.

Just a couple of names will be fine.
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Old 1st September 2021, 07:09 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
The quoted cases are isolated.
The Taliban has been murdering and raping for decades. This isnít something new.

Quote:
Please find any examples of he Taliban arguing for rape and murder of children.
They donít have to argue for it, they just do it. And what the hell do you think is going to happen with all those child brides that they are demanding for their fighters? You think those girls will all be willing? You think their new ďhusbandsĒ will wait until they are 18?

How naive are you?

Quote:
It certainly is not justified from a religious argument.
Are you not aware that Muhammad was a pedophile?

Quote:
The Taliban actually have a tip line where they ask people to anonymously report abuse by their military.
Bwahahahaha!

Oh, you sweet summer child. You are that naive.
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Old 1st September 2021, 07:27 PM   #174
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Me.

Can you show me where these people are?



For the life of me, I can't think of anyone who conforms to that, but you're clearly in the know of some since you're so vehement that it's correct.

Just a couple of names will be fine.
Sure. George Galloway and Yvonne Ridley
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Old 1st September 2021, 08:46 PM   #175
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
One thing I think that will make the Taliban different from twenty years ago was that then they were predominantly people coming out of a rural tribal background with very traditional views. Since then the senior Taliban leaders have been in exile, living in a more cosmopolitan Islamic nation. They will have interacted with a broader range of scholars than when they were based in AfPak. An example of their change is that they are quite accommodating of Shia groups, appointed a senior Shia cleric as governor of a predominantly Shia district and have condemned attacks on Shia by ISIS.
Why don't they start with renouncing Al-Qaeda and the "martyr" Bin Laden?
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Old 2nd September 2021, 02:55 PM   #176
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
The Taliban has been murdering and raping for decades. This isn’t something new.



They don’t have to argue for it, they just do it. And what the hell do you think is going to happen with all those child brides that they are demanding for their fighters? You think those girls will all be willing? You think their new “husbands” will wait until they are 18?

How naive are you?



Are you not aware that Muhammad was a pedophile?



Bwahahahaha!

Oh, you sweet summer child. You are that naive.
I guess having been brought up as a muslim, my knowledge of Islam is better than yours. This statement is false and is intended to be offensive. There is no evidence that the Prophet was interested in prepubescent children. There is not a clear separation between marriage and 'engagement' in historic cultures, Marriages were often contracted at early ages throughout history. Marriages and sexual desire were in general unrelated. What is very clear in all accounts is that there was a considerable period (years) between the marriage and consummation of the marriage. This is very strong evidence that your statement is wrong.

Remind me what is the lowest age for marriage is in the US? It is not as if child brides are illegal in the US. Has the US signed up to the UN charter on the rights of the child?
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Old 2nd September 2021, 02:58 PM   #177
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Originally Posted by Arcade22 View Post
Why don't they start with renouncing Al-Qaeda and the "martyr" Bin Laden?
What does renounce mean in this scenario?
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Old 2nd September 2021, 06:02 PM   #178
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
See how easy it is?
Easy but wrong.
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Old 2nd September 2021, 06:09 PM   #179
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
I guess having been brought up as a muslim, my knowledge of Islam is better than yours. This statement is false and is intended to be offensive. There is no evidence that the Prophet was interested in prepubescent children. There is not a clear separation between marriage and 'engagement' in historic cultures, Marriages were often contracted at early ages throughout history. Marriages and sexual desire were in general unrelated. What is very clear in all accounts is that there was a considerable period (years) between the marriage and consummation of the marriage. This is very strong evidence that your statement is wrong.
And yet, the Taliban still take child brides, and they do have sex with them while they are under age. Maybe you should lecture them about how their interpretation of Islam is wrong.

I donít think you will convince them, though.
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Old 2nd September 2021, 06:22 PM   #180
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
And yet, the Taliban still take child brides, and they do have sex with them while they are under age. Maybe you should lecture them about how their interpretation of Islam is wrong.

I don’t think you will convince them, though.
It's worth a try. I'd enjoy watching that lecture on YT.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 09:52 AM   #181
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
And yet, the Taliban still take child brides, and they do have sex with them while they are under age. Maybe you should lecture them about how their interpretation of Islam is wrong.

I donít think you will convince them, though.
I notice you avoid the fact that 'child' brides are legal in the US, and having sex with your 'under age' child bride legal in the US, indeed a child bride cannot refuse consent to sex in the US as she is a minor and the husband the guardian, so legally she cannot be raped by her husband until she reaches majority. Why is it evil if done by Afghanis but OK if done in the US?

What is the age of consent in Afghanistan?
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Old 3rd September 2021, 10:54 AM   #182
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Demonized by the west, Taliban forces provide gainful employment for women in the food services industry:

Quote:
Najia was at home with her three young sons and daughter in a small village in northern Afghanistan when Taliban fighters knocked on their door.

Najia's daughter Manizha, 25, knew they were coming -- her mother had told her they'd done the same thing the previous three days, demanding that she cook food for up to 15 fighters.
"My mother told them, 'I am poor, how can I cook for you?'" said Manizha. "(The Taliban) started beating her. My mother collapsed, and they hit her with their guns -- AK47s."
Manizha said she yelled at the fighters to stop. They paused for a moment before throwing a grenade into the next room and fleeing as the flames spread, she said. The mother of four died from the beating.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 10:57 AM   #183
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Originally Posted by trustbutverify View Post
Demonized by the west, Taliban forces provide gainful employment for women in the food services industry:
Maybe it's an isolated incident. Here in the US we understand that our police departments are corrupt and bigoted institutions. It's not just a one or two bad apples. They're all bad apples. And the ones that aren't are too few to make a change. When a cop shoots an unarmed man in the back, it's because that's the way the police like to do things, as an institution and a culture.

But that doesn't mean the Taliban is the same way.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 10:59 AM   #184
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
I notice you avoid the fact that 'child' brides are legal in the US, and having sex with your 'under age' child bride legal in the US, indeed a child bride cannot refuse consent to sex in the US as she is a minor and the husband the guardian, so legally she cannot be raped by her husband until she reaches majority. Why is it evil if done by Afghanis but OK if done in the US?

What is the age of consent in Afghanistan?
I suppose we should define what a "child bride" is first. In the U.S., the youngest a child can be legally wed is 16, and that's in less than 2/3 of the states, the rest being 17 or 18.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/table_marriage

https://www.bhwlawfirm.com/legal-age...ed-states-map/


What IS the age of consent in Afghanistan?
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Old 3rd September 2021, 11:06 AM   #185
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
I notice you avoid the fact that 'child' brides are legal in the US, and having sex with your 'under age' child bride legal in the US, indeed a child bride cannot refuse consent to sex in the US as she is a minor and the husband the guardian, so legally she cannot be raped by her husband until she reaches majority. Why is it evil if done by Afghanis but OK if done in the US?

What is the age of consent in Afghanistan?
Yet more pathetic attempts at moral equivalency. You really don't want to recognize the Taliban's crimes, do you? Or is it just that you hate the US that much? It's quite peculiar.

Child marriages in the US are not the norm, but an exception to the norm, and they have to jump through legal hoops in order to qualify. Child marriages ARE the norm in Afghanistan, made more horrific by the Taliban taking girls as war spoils. There's nothing even remotely like that here.

And you are wrong about rape laws in the US. Marriage is an exception to statutory rape, but it is not a defense against rape in general. In other words, sex isn't rape just because of age, but it is still rape due to a lack of consent.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 11:43 AM   #186
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Maybe it's an isolated incident. Here in the US we understand that our police departments are corrupt and bigoted institutions. It's not just a one or two bad apples. They're all bad apples. And the ones that aren't are too few to make a change. When a cop shoots an unarmed man in the back, it's because that's the way the police like to do things, as an institution and a culture.

But that doesn't mean the Taliban is the same way.
I have seen some pathetic attempts at moral equivelncy, but this takes the cake.
I think someone is fully invested in a romantic view of the Taliban as brave, heroic, and misunderstood Anti Imperalist Freedom FIghters, and will never give up that opinion. Polirical ideologies can be just as immune to evidence and reason as religious beliefs.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 12:07 PM   #187
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Since the Taliban has largely been trained, equipped, and funded by Pakistan, this suggests a fairly positive view of Pakistan as well.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 01:46 PM   #188
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Since the Taliban has largely been trained, equipped, and funded by Pakistan, this suggests a fairly positive view of Pakistan as well.
What do you mean by "this"? The "isolated incident" or the takeover of most of Afghanistan by the Taliban.

Regarding Pakistan, it seems to me this this interview (from 3:48) of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan by Judy Woodruff (PBS) on July 28 is interesting.

According to Khan, "U.S. really messed it up" in Afghanistan.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 01:55 PM   #189
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Yet more pathetic attempts at moral equivalency. You really don't want to recognize the Taliban's crimes, do you? Or is it just that you hate the US that much? It's quite peculiar.
I think that many people (including myself) would agree that democratic societies are better for the people than totalitarian Islamic societies.

But one should not forget that the U.S. brutally invaded Afghanistan in 2001 (they came uninvited ...). Because of this, I don't think the Americans can claim to be morally superior to the Taliban.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:04 PM   #190
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Anyone left in any doubt about the Taliban and China will not be now:

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/...kesperson-says

Quote:
“China is our most important partner and represents a fundamental and extraordinary opportunity for us, because it is ready to invest and rebuild our country,” the Taliban spokesperson was quoted as saying in the interview.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:04 PM   #191
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post
I think that many people (including myself) would agree that democratic societies are better for the people than totalitarian Islamic societies.

But one should not forget that the U.S. brutally invaded Afghanistan in 2001 (they came uninvited ...). Because of this, I don't think the Americans can claim to be morally superior to the Taliban.
Yes, actually, we can.

When we invaded, were people clinging to the sides of airplanes trying to escape us? No, they were not. In fact, the reverse happened. In 2002, 1.5 million Afghan refugees in Pakistan voluntarily returned to Afghanistan, one of the largest refugee returns in history. If our invasion was so brutal, why did so many Afghans decide conditions were better after our invasion than before? And why now do so many Afghans expect conditions to become worse under the Taliban?

I know you're reflexively anti-American, but these attempts at equivalency are just getting sad.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:08 PM   #192
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Anyone left in any doubt about the Taliban and China will not be now:

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/...kesperson-says
Nope, I've still got doubts. It's not like the Taliban have never lied in public pronouncements. And they don't exactly have a track record of friendliness with China either.

https://www.scmp.com/news/china/dipl...lled-9-chinese

That's not a one-off either, there are numerous other examples of Taliban attacks on Chinese within Pakistan. Maybe they'll change their tune, but I wouldn't bet good money on it. We shall see.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:27 PM   #193
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Yes, actually, we can.

When we invaded, were people clinging to the sides of airplanes trying to escape us? No, they were not. In fact, the reverse happened. In 2002, 1.5 million Afghan refugees in Pakistan voluntarily returned to Afghanistan, one of the largest refugee returns in history. If our invasion was so brutal, why did so many Afghans decide conditions were better after our invasion than before? And why now do so many Afghans expect conditions to become worse under the Taliban?

I know you're reflexively anti-American, but these attempts at equivalency are just getting sad.
It is true that I am frequently critical of U.S. policies, but this doesn't quite mean anti-American (there are undoubtedly some good aspects in American society, democracy and protected freedom of speech for example).

The U.S. brutally invaded in 2001 to protect the conquests of their crony Israel. During the 20 years that followed, life probably improved for many Afghans (and the West probably paid many bills), but there was also a civil war that never stopped. This meant lots of bombings, drone strikes, civilians killed (see for example this excellent article by Scott Ritter: https://www.rt.com/op-ed/533572-us-d...hanistan-isis/), terror attacks, many people killed or injured ...

That's the problem when you come in a country "uninvited" ...

Paradoxically, one might say it is actually the U.S. which gave some legitimacy to the Taliban, because they probably now appear as "liberators" for some people in the Muslim world.

The Taliban aren't particularly civilized, but at least they didn't come from the other side of the world to invade, most of them are probably true Afghans.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:38 PM   #194
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
I guess having been brought up as a muslim, my knowledge of Islam is better than yours. This statement is false and is intended to be offensive. There is no evidence that the Prophet was interested in prepubescent children. There is not a clear separation between marriage and 'engagement' in historic cultures, Marriages were often contracted at early ages throughout history. Marriages and sexual desire were in general unrelated. What is very clear in all accounts is that there was a considerable period (years) between the marriage and consummation of the marriage. This is very strong evidence that your statement is wrong.
"Al-Tabari says she was nine at the time her marriage was consummated.[33] Sahih al-Bukhari's hadith says "that the Prophet married her when she was six years old and he consummated his marriage when she was nine years old."[34]"

from AishaWP
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:45 PM   #195
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post
It is true that I am frequently critical of U.S. policies, but this doesn't quite mean anti-American (there are undoubtedly some good aspects in American society, democracy and protected freedom of speech for example).

The U.S. brutally invaded in 2001 to protect the conquests of their crony Israel.
Oh, that's right. You aren't anti-US, you're anti-Israel. Even though Israel has basically jack **** to do with Afghanistan.

It's getting harder and harder to not conclude that your bias isn't merely against Israel itself. You seem to have... something more going on.

Quote:
During the 20 years that followed, life probably improved for many Afghans (and the West probably paid many bills), but there was also a civil war that never stopped.
Were you under the impression that Afghanistan was peaceful before we arrived?

Because it wasn't.

Quote:
Paradoxically, one might say it is actually the U.S. which gave some legitimacy to the Taliban, because they probably now appear as "liberators" for some people in the Muslim world.
The Taliban have no interest in liberty. That's never been their priority, and they've never claimed it was.

Quote:
The Taliban aren't particularly civilized
And Nazis aren't particularly nice.

Quote:
but at least they didn't come from the other side of the world to invade, most of them are probably true Afghans.
Because getting killed by your neighbor is so much more preferable than being killed by a foreigner, for some reason.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 02:58 PM   #196
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Oh, that's right. You aren't anti-US, you're anti-Israel. Even though Israel has basically jack **** to do with Afghanistan.

It's getting harder and harder to not conclude that your bias isn't merely against Israel itself. You seem to have... something more going on.
What I have going on is certainly not antisemitism, if this is what you would like to suggest.

My point is very simple: if you want to stop terrorism, don't invade half of the world. Instead, turn your attention to Israel, stop the occupations. Because of their past of terrible persecutions, the Jews seem to be systematically overprotected by the West nowadays.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 03:24 PM   #197
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Nope, I've still got doubts. It's not like the Taliban have never lied in public pronouncements. And they don't exactly have a track record of friendliness with China either.
I'm picking they want to be seen as a legitimate government, and all the moves so far suggest that's true, as EU start to engage with them:

https://www.france24.com/en/asia-pac...t-with-taliban
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Old 3rd September 2021, 03:35 PM   #198
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post
The U.S. brutally invaded in 2001 to protect the conquests of their crony Israel.
That makes no sense at all. Anti-semitism isn't known for being particularly rational or coherent, but even in that context this is still unusually stupid.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 04:33 PM   #199
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post
The U.S. brutally invaded in 2001 to protect the conquests of their crony Israel.
This is exactly the caliber of drivel to be expected from someone who wishes Nazi Germany had developed an atomic weapon.

Quote:
During the 20 years that followed, life probably improved for many Afghans (and the West probably paid many bills), but there was also a civil war that never stopped. This meant lots of bombings, drone strikes, civilians killed (see for example this excellent article by Scott Ritter:
Ritter is a pathological narcissist, who was more than happy to aggressively advance whatever position his employer required, right up until the moment they stopped feeding his diseased, boated ego. After that, he turned to Seymour Hersh and underage girls to make him feel like a real man.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 09:05 PM   #200
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Yet more pathetic attempts at moral equivalency. You really don't want to recognize the Taliban's crimes, do you? Or is it just that you hate the US that much? It's quite peculiar.

Child marriages in the US are not the norm, but an exception to the norm, and they have to jump through legal hoops in order to qualify. Child marriages ARE the norm in Afghanistan, made more horrific by the Taliban taking girls as war spoils. There's nothing even remotely like that here.

And you are wrong about rape laws in the US. Marriage is an exception to statutory rape, but it is not a defense against rape in general. In other words, sex isn't rape just because of age, but it is still rape due to a lack of consent.
Statistics please. What is the median age of marriage?

By law (pre Taliban ie for most of the past 20 years persons had to be over 16 to marry.

In Pashtun culture marriages are arranged (something I think is wrong and un-Islamic), 'marriages' (more akin to engagements) traditionally might occur young, but brides might stay with their family until older before moving in to the husbands home. Essentially as would have been true for most of history in most of the world marriageable age is post menarche. This is not unique to Afghanistan, but is very much a class / education / rural issue. The community I come from in England certainly has an issue with this. Girls would be taken out of school in England at age 14 + sent off to family in rural villages in the tribal part of Pakistan, be married off and not return until pregnant. One of the failings of social services and education in the UK was being overly culturally sensitive to avoid being seen as racist and failing to protect young girls from sexual exploitation. I and my sister were relatively protected because our parents were from a professional rather than working class background, and our parents eloped. Which was always the weapon we used when discussions about suitable boys arose with the aunties. The point of this personal digression being that there are cultural norms that are nothing to do with the Taliban, arranged marriage and young marriage for men and women is the norm.

Also what is the evidence that the Taliban are taking girls as war spoils. This would not be Islamic, and the Taliban are very islamic.

!ssues are
1) many people believe propaganda put out by anti-Islamic right wing groups.
2) many people do not distinguish between Islamist groups.
3) many people do not understand the Taliban are essentially a political and religious organisation, most of the military forces are allied to the Taliban but not controlled by the Taliban. The Haqqani network is the largest military grouping, it is the group that was allied to Al qaeda and sheltered Bin Laden. They are also perpetrators of several of the atrocities that you blame the Taliban for. They are not controlled by the Taliban. They are coalition partners.
4) The Taliban are not international terrorists, they are focussed purely on the internal issues of Afghanistan.

i do not dispute that atrocities happen, but it is not and never has been Taliban policy to rape and murder children. Islam Pashtun culture is certainly patriarchal, but it is not barbaric.

If any are familiar with Irish politics the relationship between the Taliban and many of the military units is a bit like the relationship between Sinn Fein and e.g. the Real IRA (not the provisionals). Or even perhaps a little like the relationship between the catholic church and the IRA.
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