Our feminist crusade in Afghanistan

It’s always embarassing to realize that one has been taken in by an obvious lie.  I myself am ashamed to say that I’ve believed the standard story about our Afghan war for longer than I believed in Santa Claus.  The story, put out by the U.S. government and the press, goes something like this:  Once in Afghanistan, there was this group of people called “the Taliban”.  The Taliban were both brutal and tyrannical, and to top it off fairly incompetent rulers.  Afghan society was oppressed and desperately poor.  Worst of all, they opposed public schooling for girls.  (Horror!  Horror!)  Everybody hated the Taliban–they were really unpopular and could maintain their rule only by fear.  They were motivated by an extreme misinterpretation that most Muslims thought grotesque.  Everywhere, Afghans yearned to live like liberal, secular Americans.  Afghanistan, you see, is unique in all the world in that it is filled with girls who are desperate to go to school.  What girls everywhere else in the world hate, Afghan girls will risk secular martyrdom for.

Then we invaded–I mean, liberated–them and set up a new Afghan government.  Afghan society is now vastly freer.  The new government is vastly more popular, and, thanks to us, it has an overwhelming advantage in military force and technology.  Oh, and one more thing, the thing that doesn’t make any sense.  This war is still going on.  The Taliban is actually on the rise.  They still control large parts of the country, and we’re slowly coming to realize that we can’t beat them.

Now, how can this be?  Our wealth and our weapons are unquestionably superior.  The Taliban (we are assured) have nothing to recommend them, so the populace would like us to win.  How is this war not over yet?  The only explanation I’ve heard that’s consistent with the official narrative is that the Afghans are sick of war, and so they’re willing to live under the Taliban now.  But that doesn’t make any sense; when one wants an end to war, one sides with the stronger side, which is surely us.

The official story doesn’t make sense.  It can’t possibly be true in the real world.  Therefore, I conclude that it is a lie.

What could the truth be?  Let’s probe a little deeper.  Here’s another discrepancy I’ve noticed.  On the one hand, I hear that we are bringing democracy to the Afghans.  Democracy, as we all know, is a type of political arrangement.  On the other hand, I hear that much of Afghanistan lives under tribal authority, that is, it’s not under the rule of a political organization at all.  So, what “democratization” means here would not be a change in government type, but an extension of government power–a conquest, in other words.  Now, you may object to that word and say that tribal authority is always illegitimate anyway, that it’s the equivalent of mafia power.  If you believe that, though, then you must conclude that America was justified in dispossessing the Native Americans, who were, in a sense, “democratized” by being conquered by the American state.

There are, thus, two possibilities.  1) America is helping its Afghan puppet government acquire power no Afghan government has ever had.  In doing so, it is working to undermine the only authorities many Afghans have ever recognized.  2) The puppet government is actually a charade.  It is controlled by one clan as a means to assert itself over other clans.  Either way, a willingness to oppose our side becomes more understandable.

But, really, I shouldn’t waste my time on the democracy issue, which no one really cares about.  The thing that truly excites Western passions is putting girls in school, allowing them to be “educated”.  This plays well to Western prejudices, but let’s think about what it really means.  Do we imagine that if a girl doesn’t go to school, her mind is left totally empty?  That can’t be right.  If nothing else, she must be trained in her future duties as a wife and mother.  In fact, she will receive a sort of education from her mother and her other (especially female) kin.  Much of this will be practical knowledge, but so is Western education.  In this sense, an Afghan woman learning to cook and sew is no different from an American woman learning to use Microsoft Word.  Indeed, I think the “primitive” skills superior in that they involve a real contact with nature.  Of course, I have no doubt that the Afghans, being a strongly religious people, also make sure that their women become familiar with the basics of Islam.

So, the question is not “should women be taught?”, but rather “who should teach them?” and “what should they be taught?”  If we step back from our Western prejudice that “that the state teaches = truth”, we see that the former question, the “who” question, is a question of power.  What it boils down to is this:  who should control the minds of women:  their families, or the State?  Seen this way, public schools are a power grab:  the family loses hold over the minds of its daughters and wives, and the State gains mastery over these minds.  Again, one can imagine how some might see this as a less than purely benevolent development.

Finally, there’s the issue of the Taliban’s social tyranny:  the restrictive dress codes, the destroying of Buddhist statues, punishing adulterers and blasphemers, etc.  As we know, our press pushes a strong anti-censorship ideology.  According to them, communities have no right to defend their public spaces from blashemy and filth.  (Conveniently, their “freedom of expression” ideology just happens to coincide with the arrangement that maximizes their social power.)  I think this same press should not be trusted on such issues.  They tell us that the Afghans felt oppressed by the Taliban’s restrictions, and no doubt some did, but how many?  What proof do we have, aside from the testimony of Western stooges, that the Afghans found these rules unbearable?  Isn’t it just as likely that most of them approve of suppressing behaviors inimical to public order and public morality, as they see these things?  Perhaps not, but our public commentators seem not to be able to conceive such a thing.  That makes them untrustworthy.

I know the “official story” described above is a lie.  I don’t know what the truth is.  Perhaps my readers can recommend a book or magazine article?

10 Responses

  1. I’m far for being an expert in Afganistan affairs, but I think, from their point of view, that is no difference being “liberated” by American people or some little green creatures.

  2. I suppose I would feel the same way.

  3. I’ve made this case as well…that the Western militaries have become the militant arm of the femmarxist lobby. People thought I was daft for saying so.

  4. Hello Elusive Wapiti,

    I’m pleased to have you visit my little blog. Now that you mention it, I think one of your articles contributed to my disillusionment by pointing out how feminism was grounding pro-war propaganda, not only by neo-cons, but also
    in Leftist publications like Time magazine. For the longest time I couldn’t get my head around this, that the Republican Party
    and the media might be colluding on something. I knew that the official story didn’t add up, but I assumed that I
    must just be missing something.

  5. Conveniently, their “freedom of expression” ideology just happens to coincide with the arrangement that maximizes [the press establishment’s] social power.

    Yes, right down to the mysterious exceptions. Where is the hysterical campaign for Julian Assange’s human rights by the press establishment? Certainly there is no argument worthy of the name that he is not a member of the press. Similarly, the press establishment treated for a while as serious the question “are bloggers members of the press?” This line-drawing exercise has lost a lot of its urgency recently—it got its urgency mostly from McCain-Feingold, and the SC recently eviscerated that piece of legislation. The fact that the establishment press pretty much lost interest right around the time that the question became irrelevant to their power is itself telling.

  6. […] even knowing the facts of the matter, just because the official story is incoherent.  An example I’ve already given is our feminist crusade in Afghanistan.  If the Taliban were simultaneously as unpopular and as […]

  7. People thought I was daft for saying so.

    Did they? Well, I think it’s fairly evidently the case. Note: I don’t necessarily believe it’s why we went there in the first place, but now that we’re there, it’s certainly become one of the chief goals.

    Bitterly ironic that the femmarxist agenda is being enforced by good ol’ white boys who imagine they’re doing something “patriotic”.

    Why American men should boycott American women


    I am an American man, and I have decided to boycott American women. In a nutshell, American women are the most likely to cheat on you, to divorce you, to get fat, to steal half of your money in the divorce courts, don’t know how to cook or clean, don’t want to have children, etc. Therefore, what intelligent man would want to get involved with American women?

    American women are generally immature, selfish, extremely arrogant and self-centered, mentally unstable, irresponsible, and highly unchaste. The behavior of most American women is utterly disgusting, to say the least.

    This blog is my attempt to explain why I feel American women are inferior to foreign women (non-American women), and why American men should boycott American women, and date/marry only foreign (non-American) women.


  9. Hello Mr. Rambo,

    Well, it’s happily too late for me, but good luck with your plan. I do think that those statistics would carry more weight if one were being forced to take on an American girl at random. Fortunately, we don’t have to do that, and certain subgroups and personality types will be far less given to the pathologies you mention than others.

  10. Hello Samson,

    Yes, and what’s worse is that they’ve been brought up to believe that the only reason they can legitimately feel attachment for their country is because of its commitment to feminism and other egalitarian nonsense.

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