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Afghanistan massacre and religious intolerance

Our Readers Who Comment have turned the massacre in Afghanistan of 10 members of a Christian medical aid group into a sometimes angry and intolerant debate about Islam and why the United States is still fighting a war in Afghanistan.

The aid group was not part of the U.S. government war effort, but a humanitarian endeavor by an international charity operating in difficult territory. Reader response is all over the map, ranging from questions of why the group would be there in the first place to calls for U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan to extraordinary suggestions showing that religious intolerance is not possessed solely by some who practice the Muslim religion.

As Joshua Parlow writes, "...with the massacre of 10 members of an eye care team in the rugged mountains of northern Afghanistan, the group suffered its greatest tragedy. But its 44-year history in Afghanistan, as an openly Christian charity in a deeply conservative Muslim country, is one of enduring near-impossible circumstances."

We'll start with tarquinis1, who wrote, "...As a practical matter Christian missionary doctors have no place in the shattered lands of Afghanistan today. The Red Crescent must take that role. As another practical matter, this is the consequence of thirty years of devastation and killing, which we facilitated via Charlie Wilson's war. Humans get crazy after such massive and prolonged trauma. No justification, just reality..."

And m1kem1lls said, "It seems that the Afghans don't want westerns, non-muslims, occupying their country. The time has has arrived to face the music and come home. What are we doing in that part of the world except pissing everybody off? Why can't we wake up to the undeniable fact? They don't want us in their country. Come home, NOW!"

mirrorgazer wrote, "Two hundred years from now, that country will have changed little from the wasteland it is today. Get our military best back on our soil to give Americans direct protection from terrorists we know are now on our soil plotting our destruction."

jonathan879 said, "When the suicide attacks and kilings based on religion occur every day then that is not extreme but part of mainstream Islam. Only reason to stop this is to call Islam worse than Nazism and put a stop to it. But our leaders keep building mosques for them and keep inviting Muslims here."

hooeyknows wrote, "If you have any doubts about the muslims wanting to kill only Jews and Zionists, then this should be the wake up call. Open season on all infidels is their rallying cry."

markiejoe said, "Evangelism is just such a horrible endeavor. No matter what it might be coupled with. We need to rid the world of organized religions. ALL of them. Only then will we have the opportunity to live in peace."

JosephDoakes wrote, "Pretty smart. Does martyrhood or the thrill of it appeal to these people? An identifiable Christian group over in a war zone where the enemy hates Christians, and these folks were out on a picnic, undefended, and ran into a world of trouble. Too bad, but they got themselves into it. Don't expect my sympathy."

John991 said, "For all the stuff I read, I have yet to read an intelligent answer to the question of why we're still in Afghanistan. A war on "terror'? Give me a break. How do we win that? Kill enough of them and the rest will turn into card carrying Republicans with subscriptions to Fox News? It's another Vietnam. We can't win. why not get out now?"

To which oracle2world replied, "For a variety of reasons.
a. Provide combat training for our troops.
b. Engage muslims on their own turf, instead of America.
c. Try out new war tactics, aka predators.
It is important for our military to stay sharp, and there is no substitute for genuine combat. It is critical that senior officers in the military have actual experience under fire. Call this phase of military training ... thinning of the herd."

Thozmaniac wrote, "Remember, there are NO MODERATE MUSLIMS!
They all read from the same koran, and follow it's instructions. They put on a smile and a friendly face while planning YOUR destruction. It's either them or us, which will it be?
Will you sit idly by and watch fellow Christians, Americans, family members and friends be slaughtered over a false God?..."

kingfish20815 said, "Contrary to what a lot of posters here think - these people do believe in and support freedom - they specifically want to be free of foreign influence not to mention foreign troops and those who want to subvert their culture..."

Conspiracy theory of the day comes from amapola11, who wrote, "Someone turn them in! This just did not happen. I believe that in the government someone is purspously helping the Taliban and Osama. They have friends in our goverment and in this administration. How pittyful and they claim not to know anything. Just like Obama did during his whole campaign. What an infamous person this man is....."

SusannaP wrote, "As someone from outside the US your comments astonish me. You are 99% Christian and yet almost every letter is violent - all about killing, wipe them off the face of the earth, turn their country to glass etc You are the pot calling the kettle black and you do not even realise it."

We'll close with brwntrt, who wrote, "A great many of these comments are unfortunate because Islam and Muslims are being vilified. We have ten volunteer medical personnel who were killed. We are not even sure who did this or what their motive was. Are certain segments of the Muslim populace extremists? Yes, that is true. But it is also true the vast majority of Muslims are not extremists. I have no issue with going after those extremist elements in Afghanistan or elsewhere. But let's not just spread a gospel of hate and impart it to everyone of a certain religion, much less a culture..."

All comments on this article are here.

By Doug Feaver  |  August 9, 2010; 9:04 AM ET
Categories:  Afghanistan  | Tags: Afghanistan, Christian, Islam, massacre  
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Don't bring them here. Stop Muslim immigration. Virgil Goode was right and Tom Pereiello and ActBlue were wrong.

Posted by: OldAtlantic | August 10, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

And no one sees the parallel between the 10 humanitiarian aid workers killed in Afghanistan by the Taliban with the nine killed in international waters by Israel?

Sounds like hypocrisy to me.

Posted by: wayoffbaseguy | August 10, 2010 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Feaver, you PC dummies are clueless in a most self destructive way. It is not religous intolerance to not want to import a "people" who commit more terrorist attacks than EVERYONE ELSE combined. Every day muslims blow people up, usaually other muslims. Why do I have to take my shoes off at the airport, 3 oz carry on? Could it be muslim shoe bombers and underwear bombers on Christmas day flights. Why are silly cartoon shows being censored? Could it be death threats from muslims in our own country. Blah blah blah, I could go on and on; psycho muslim army MD/major mass muredering fellow soldiers, routine attempted attacks in US, cutting throat of Van Gogh film guy, ... etc. Yeah, I don't know how I got by in the bad old days before our new muslim additions began spreading peace and love.
I don't care what they do in their own country, just don't bring it here.

Posted by: jm125 | August 9, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

I'll never understand why smart people like these aid workers put themselves at risk when all the evidence points to the fact that over time, none of these humanitarian efforts bear any useful or lasting results. While their selfless acts may make them feel good, I suggest that they be redirected to people who might be more appreciative. The savages in places like Agfukistan just don't have it in them to give up their barbaric ways. Let them be. We have people at home who could use the help.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | August 9, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

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