Most young Afghan men never heard of 9/11

May 13, 2011

The pretext for the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, now the longest war in US history, was the September 11, 2001 attacks.

But the vast majority of Afghans being carpet bombed, eviscerated by Predator drones and shot dead in night raids don’t even know what the 9/11 attacks were.

A public opinion poll in Kandahar and Helmand provinces — the focus of the troop surge and the scene of the great majority of bloodshed in the country — found that only 8% of young men know about the September 11 attacks in the United States.

Most of those polled believe the US is in Afghanistan simply for “violence and destruction”.

The poll revealed the “most important reason young men are joining the Taliban”. About 45% join because of the brutal foreign occupation imposed on them. Another 33% join because there are no jobs. “Ideology” or “religion” were not factors in any response.

The poll also revealed that 81% of the Afghan police and 69% of the Afghan army are either already working with the Taliban, or will end up joining the Taliban.

[Abridged from .]


My guess is that now Bin Laden has been killed the US (and its allies) public sees little reason to be in Afghanistan, and no stomach for the cost, and lives spent in a country they are still struggling to spell and locate on a map. I confidently predict that a gradual withdrawal will commence in the near future, accompanied by mutterings from the White House about restoring the Afghani's right to self-determination. Which will eventually result in the Taliban restoring the world's most repressive, and backward theocratic regime - to the vocal cheering of the GLW and self-describing "progressives" all over the world.
Alternatively some form of government or leadership is established that is neither a US puppet or the Taliban. The idea that it can only be one or the other is ludicrous. Most Afghanis hate the occupation, as well as the Taliban, let us give them the chance to choose their own destiny. Most support that the Taliban currently has is due to the occupation, take away the occupation and the Taliban is a spent force. Also GLW would not support a return of the Taliban, just as much as it does not support the occupation, so to claim that their would be vocal cheering with the return on the Taliban is a load of bullshit.
In fact, quite a good many young people I meet also have no idea what the 9/11 attacks were and I have to admit that my own knowledge of what happened 10 years ago was never as complete as it should have been. My recollection is that hijackers, who were trained in al Qaeda camps in Afghanistan, hijacked 4 domestic airplanes in the US on 11 September and crashed them into the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon, killing nearly 3,000 people. The US Government used this as a pretext to launch its invasion of Afghanistan. I would have thought ten years was long enough to finish off those who had launched 9/11 from Afghanistan, but the US and Australian Governments would have us think more time is needed.

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