For the sake of anyone who cares about the fate of the Afghan people (particularly those folks who believe their lives would be improved by the absence of US and NATO military forces), below is a sampling of Taliban human rights atrocities for the past month.
Among their many other crimes, including suicide bombings, roadside bombs and the use of civilians as human shields, during the month of June 2010, the Taliban:
- Hung a 7 year old boy in Helmand Province for allegedly "spying;"
- Beheaded 11 civilians in Uruzgan Province;
- Burnt down 2 schools and decapitated the headmaster of one in Ghazni Province;
- Cut off the hands of 2 Pashtun men in the town of Kohat, in northwest Pakistan, who were so intimidated they refused the medical assistance organized by their families and friends; and
- Caused 75% of all civilian casualties in Afghanistan.
However, not all the news was bad. 15 Taliban accidentally killed themselves when bombs they were making exploded inside a mosque in Paktika Province, along Afghanistan's eastern border with Pakistan. Significantly, 13 of these victims of their own mischief were Arab or Pakistani, perfectly demonstrating that the Taliban is not a native insurgency, but rather an invasion force from across the border in Pakistan.
A recent survey conducted by the Kabul based Afghan Center for Socio-Economic and Opinion Research concluded that only 6% of Afghans support the Taliban; 70% say their lives have improved since the 2001 overthrow of the Taliban government; 69% say the Taliban is the greatest danger to their country, with drug traffickers running a distant second place at only 11%; and only 5% blame U.S. forces for the violence in Afghanistan. That last number would probably be higher in a poll of American citizens at home.
Isolationism should not be confused with the compassionate values of Progressivism. If Coalition forces withdraw before Afghanistan is strong enough to defend itself against the never-ending attacks from Pakistan, hundreds of thousands of Afghan civilians will be killed. That is what happened in the 1990s, when approximately 400,000 Afghans died, and the stage is set for it to happen again. Progressives should ask themselves, if American soldiers could have prevented the Rwandan Genocide, wouldn't they have endorsed that? That is exactly what the U.S. and NATO are currently doing in Afghanistan, preventing a holocaust.