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07 August 2011


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Charles I

Answer: Not

William R. Cumming

Great post but I would argue that Ethiopia was the big USAID success story of the 50's! Then too a monarchy collapsed.

And I now see Coptic Christians as up to 10% of Egypt's population. Could this be accurate?

Babak Makkinejad

I think that Afghans were also receiving aide from the Soviet Union; there was a mosque in Kabul University that was built by the offically athesit Soviet Union.

I think the flaw was that that Afghanistan was not part of the World economy and the commdotity relations obtaining therein. Neighboring Iran, with almost identical cultural make-up, did far better because the discovery of oil sucked her into the world economy - kicking and screaming wanting to remain in the slumber of the last 1000 years.

There was nothing comparable to oil in Afghanistan and thus the trappings of Modernity could not take root.

It reminds me of Zaire - Democratic Republic of the Congo in which everything that the Europeans had built decayed after their departure.


Who gets the bill for the destroyed two Buddhas of Bamiyan rock engravings that has been residing in Afghanistan since the 6th Century?

William R. Cumming

J! US!

Babak Makkinejad



Roy G.

Babak, your statement implies that the Taliban = Muslims. Care to calibrate your statement, or clarify that you are referring to public misconception?

Babak Makkinejad

Roy G.

If you go to the city of Kerman-Shah (from the same Indo-European root from which the word Germany come from) in Western Iran, you will note an ancient site called "Taq-e Bostan" from Sassanian era.

The equestrian fresco of Khosrow II there has been defaced. This has been a common practice in centuries past.

At I have heard that there were a group of men with bulldozers who were intending to raze the ruins of Persepolis in 1979; just after the triumph of Islamic Revolution.

Taliban did not bring anything new or different to Islam that did not exist before them.

What distinguishes them from others is their zeal for a Muslim Utopia and the attendant rejection of the experience of Muslim History.

I recall reading a leading Ayatollah in Iran – during a sermon years ago – expressing for the Taliban for their "True Islamic Justice". Of course, that was before the 9/11/2001 attack against US and the fellow - him also due to his zeal for yet another Utopian project - glossed over the murder of Iranian diplomats in Mazar-e Sharif earlier.

The world, unfortunately, seems not to lack fools (almost invariably men - no doubt a consequence of testosterone.)

Roy G.

Babak, your historical references add valuable historic perspective, yet I disagree with your conclusion, where you have extrapolated the actions of a historical few to include an entire population. Similarly, I wouldn't say it was 'Jews' who wanted/want to dynamite the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, after the Israeli takeover there. I think this behavior tracks with your final statement, and has more to do with human nature than religious trait.

Babak Makkinejad

Roy G.:

The fact remains that the Taliban cannot be criticized on any basis that are either in the Quran or are in the Sunnah or in the Islamic Law.

They are untouchable.

To criticize them, you have to employ Muslim Philosophy and Historical sociology of Muslim polities.

But they reject the relevance of both.

It matters not if you deal with Judaism or with Islam; left to themselves, the respective traditions will lead to death and destruction.

Humans are not fools; they are Fallen. It is almost exclusively male humans that are both Fallen and Fools.

William R. Cumming

BABAK! How do the Taliban integrate "reason" and "faith"?

Babak Makkinejad

William R. Cumming:

They do not.

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