The CIA, the Taliban, Buddhas and the KLA
"All officials, including the Ministry of Vice and Virtue, have been given the go-ahead to destroy the statues", said the Taliban Information Minister. "The destruction work will be done by any means available. All the statues all over the country will be destroyed." The statues in question are unique. They include two giant Buddhas cut from rock and dating back to the third and fifth centuries AD. There has been worldwide condemnation of this act of vandalism. The response from the Taliban's supreme leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, was dismissive of the pleas to preserve the statues and other works of art. "We do not understand why everybody is so worried. All we are breaking are stones." Barbaric Afghanistan is governed by what would have to be the most barbaric, extreme and oppressive government in the world. But who created the Taliban? The USA through its support of the most fanatical elements in Afghanistan during the war with the Soviet Union helped the Taliban's rise to power. "US aid to the mujahideen went through the CIA. The CIA passed it on to its counterpart in Pakistan, the ISI (which doubles as the Pakistani secret police). The ISI passed it on to the political parties of exiles in Peshawar, from whom, in turn, it finally made its way, often much-reduced, to commanders inside Afghanistan. "The ISI, as a matter of deliberate policy, favoured the most extreme Islamist organisations and ethnic separatists. The CIA went along, reasoning that the Islamists were the most immovably anti-communist groups available. The fact that they were also the most anti-Western does not seem to have entered their calculations". (Cosma Shalizi's review of "The Soviet Invasion and the Afghan Response, 1979-1982"). [The Taliban was one of the most extreme, religiously fanatical forces that came out of the Mujihadeen.] Taliban school camps were established in Pakistan and thousands of children were indoctrinated with hatred and intolerance. One of the most heinous crimes of the time was the kidnapping of Afghani children who were transported to these camps. The desperate pleas of Afghan families for the return of their children fell on deaf ears. At the time the Soviet Union was the "aggressor" and the mujahideen were "freedom fighters". Afghanistan had a population of 15 million that has now contracted to nine million. Six million people have been driven out of the country and are refugees in neighbouring countries or overseas. The West has now turned against the Taliban, the USA's terrorist No 1, bin- Laden, is in Afghanistan, even though in the past the CIA had also supported him. Taliban forces have been actively engaged in murder and mayhem in Algiers, Bosnia, Kosovo, Chechnya. The Taliban commands vast amounts of drug money, and hence can arm itself with weapons, hire mercenaries and bribe its way in many places. Mary Mostert, an analyst for "Banner of Liberty" comments: "What [our] policy has gotten us and Afghanistan is the most oppressive, most evil and the most violent of all the political groups in Afghanistan Taliban, when the people are also being destroyed. This says something of the values we have after eight years of Bill Clinton." There is a similar story in Kosovo where the KLA was supported, financed and armed by courtesy of the CIA. The KLA has driven out Serbs, Gypsies, Jews and all others who are different from the fundamentalist Moslems who control the KLA under the protection of NATO troops. "The monks in Decani Monastery were critical of Slobadan Milosevic and believed that co-existence was possible with their KLA neighbours two years ago. Today, their website shows pictures of demolished churches and dead priests", says Mary Mostert. The NATO aggression against Yugoslavia saw churches, schools and hospitals blown up. That operation was called "Merciful Angel". Before that there was "Desert Storm" and, continuing to this day, the bombing of Iraq, otherwise known as "the cradle of civilisation". Taliban has learnt well from its masters. Will the same passion being expressed about the Buddhas be extended to the people in Afghanistan and the Balkans who are suffering the consequences of the criminal policies of the capitalist rulers.