Most Americans think the Afghanistan mistake was the Right Thing to Do. While we are on record (here and here) as of another opinion, the conventional view is that getting rid of the Taliban was Good (they were Bad, which is true) and anyway it was payback for 9/11 (even though the Afghans didn’t actually commit 9/11, only were the geographic location of the planner — thanks to US aid when bin Laden was fighting the Soviets. Now Pakistan is where the 9/11 leaders live (not to mention that the actual perpetrators, who mostly came from Saudi). You fill in the rest. Still, few agree with us. Maybe we didn’t get bin Laden but at least we got rid of the religious extremists, the ones who oppressed women and ran the place under religious law.
And replaced them with . . .
A 23-year-old student journalist in Afghanistan has been sentenced to death for downloading and distributing a report that is critical of the oppressive treatment of women in some Islamic societies.
Sayed Pervez Kambaksh, who is a journalism student at Balkh University and a writer for Jahan-e Naw, was sentenced last October after downloading a report from a Farsi website that criticized Islamic fundamentalists who misrepresent statements in the Koran to justify the oppression of women. Kambaksh was arrested after someone filed a complaint against him. He is accused of blasphemy for distributing the report to other students and teachers at his school.
He was tried by a sharia court (which oversees Islamic religious law) and was not allowed legal representation, according to news reports. The Afghan Senate passed a motion this week supporting the sentence, according to the British newspaper The Independent.
Other journalists have been warned that they would be arrested if they protested in support of Kambaksh. (Wired)
Maybe this doesn’t bother you,because while the Afghanis may be acting like the Taliban, but they are our Taliban. But if it does bother you, you can sign a petition online being organized by the UK newspaper, The Independent.