Wasn’t one of the purposes of sending soldiers into Iraq and Afghanistan to promote democracy and human rights? It may have been added after the fact, but it was the argument. The argument in the Iraq War was WMDs. In Afghanistan, it was the destruction of al-Qaeda. But both turned to developing democracy.
In Afghanistan, the military is concerned about the large number of attacks on American soldiers by rogue members of the Afghan military. Part of the blame has been centered on the interaction between soldiers on culturally sensitive issues. Having the American soldier more culturally sensitive is a good thing. No one needs to spout off criticisms of Islam. Afghans have a right to believe in their religion as much as Americans.
The manual hasn’t been officially released yet. Yet The Blaze describes what taboo subjects are to be avoided:
The draft handbook provides a list of “taboo conversation topics” that soldiers should not discuss, including “making derogatory comments about the Taliban,” “advocating women’s rights,” “any criticism of pedophilia,” “directing any criticism towards Afghans,” “mentioning homosexuality and homosexual conduct” or “anything related to Islam.” Apparently, censoring U.S. troops will make them more safe.
“Bottom line: Troops may experience social-cultural shock and/or discomfort when interacting with [Afghan security forces],” the handbook states. “Better situational awareness/understanding of Afghan culture will help better prepare [troops] to more effectively partner and to avoid cultural conflict that can lead toward green-on-blue violence.”
Some of this makes sense. However, the handbook lists some taboo subjects that are internationally despised. To ignore these topics undermines the foundation of a democratic society.
Women’s rights are the perfect example. It doesn’t mean advocating for absolute gender equality. While a good thing, that is a struggle impossible to accomplish by the military. A lot of Afghan women accept their status. It is a battle of education. What should not be ignored are blatant human rights abuses, such as beatings by a husband on a wife.
If the Afghan military is filled with soldiers who take a fist to their spouses, those soldiers should be kicked out of the ranks. If the Afghan government is allowing its military to include men like this, then what is the difference between Hamid Karzai’s regime and the Taliban?
Even worse, pedophilia is never to be broached as a topic. This is a major problem in Afghan society where young boys are groomed into playthings for men. This is something that American soldiers are ordered not to discuss? In effect, this means ignoring pedophilia.
We aren’t fighting al-Qaeda in Afghanistan anymore, at least not to a significant extent. We are fighting medieval ways of the Taliban. Abusing women is part of their agenda. They are not liberals on saving young boys either.
This is just another of those indicators that raises the question? What are we still doing there, especially when we are tolerating this stuff?
Take a look at this trailer form the movie “The Dancing Boys of Afghanistan.” It’s a cultural horror hard to ignore.