June 10, 2002

'The Afghan Economic Miracl...

Comments

"This ought to shut up western handwringers who complained that the US was bombing the rubble. The return of refugees in such large numbers is a strong indication of the improvement of governance since the fall of the Taliban regime, and a vindication of US intervention."

Except that the refugees did not flee because of Taliban rule, they fled because of U.S. bombs. Wasting away in a refugee camp was a superior alternative to being ground into hamburger by U.S. ordnance. We should really congratulate ourselves for providing refugees the opportunity to not be smashed by bombs. For now. But how will they pay us back?

Posted by: southpaw at June 11, 2002 06:47 AM

stinkfinger,

You really should read the article Nick Denton linked to, it contains some FACTS. Here's the relevent portion:

"UNHCR said it had repatriated a total of 920,000 Afghans since March, and some 200,000 others have come back on their own from neighboring Iran and Pakistan -- a quarter of the more than 4 million Afghans displaced by 23 years of war."

Did you get that, "23 years of war". That's all the way back to 1979 -- when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan in order to prop up their Marxist puppet of a dictator. The refugees didn't return in the 1980's as that war raged between the Afghanis and the Soviets, they didn't return in the early and mid-1990's as the various Afghani factions fought it out for control of Afghanistan, and they didn't return in the late 1990's after the Taliban took power. They are now returning.

If you'd learn a little bit of history you wouldn't be making loony statements like this:

"Except that the refugees did not flee because of Taliban rule, they fled because of U.S. bombs."

You can thank me for the history lesson at a later date.

Posted by: Dave Crawford at June 11, 2002 01:52 PM

Thanks Dave, but you really should be more careful before you make such an ass of yourself.

As the quote states, approx 1.12 million refugees have returned to Afghanistan "since March... a quarter of the more than 4 million Afghans displaced by 23 years of war."

According to the New York Times (Oct 3, 2001):

"The United Nations high commissioner for refugees estimates that as many as 1.5 million new refugees may flee to the countries surrounding Afghanistan over the next six months."

So the number of returning Afghans is about the same as the number that were expected to flee the country post September 11. Arthur C. Helton, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations writes:

"More than one million have already been internally uprooted, and thousands more are fleeing major cities for the countryside. The current displacement is caused by fear of forcible conscription by the Taliban regime and panic about military attack."

My "loony statement" is thus echoed by a major establishment intellectual as against your sloppily deduced "conclusion" which assumes that the returning Afghans are mostly refugees from the early stages of "23 years of war" or that they represent all stages to the extent of their historical distribution. Of course, there is no evidence given for this premise nor does it make much sense since the earliest refugees are more likely to have settled elsewhere and are therefore less likely to return. Not surprisingly, your "history lesson" ignores the role of the United States in the destruction of 1980's Afghanistan and our indifference to the subsequent chaos.

Perhaps you will arm yourself with some evidence to supplement your “logic” next time.

Posted by: southpaw at June 12, 2002 09:50 AM

Why is your baseline "1980s Afghanistan" not, say, 1970s Afghanistan? Tiresome Chomskyites never type the phrase "Soviet Union."

Posted by: Just as Anonymous as Southpaw! at June 12, 2002 01:13 PM

Southpaw, first of all nothing in Dave's statement has been disproved you stated:

"Except that the refugees did not flee because of Taliban rule, they fled because of U.S. bombs."
Your statement still remains incorrect. Whether or not there was 1,000,000 refugees does not help your statement. There are refugees for many reasons including famine and drought. Your blanket statement is wrong.
Strike 1.....

You also went on to make false quotes about Dave's article:
"assumes that the returning Afghans are MOSTLY refugees from the early stages of "23 years of war".
Could you show me where he says that?
Are you making assumptions here?
Strike 2....

As for using early estimates on Oct 3 as fact “estimates that as many as 1.5 million new refugees may flee the country” is just ridiculous! This isn’t any sort hard fact total what-so-ever. Nor does it tell how many fled the country.

"More than one million have already been internally uprooted, and...”
This ALSO says nothing about the displaced total OUTSIDE of Afghanistan.
I think you forgot to read the FIRST article where it says:
"more than a million Afghan refugees have returned to the COUNTRY in the last three months."
Please read this link
http://www.dfid.gov.uk/Emergency/files/emerg_01Nov21.html
The totals as of Nov. 21 was:
Refugees in Iran pre-11 September 1,500,000
Refugees in Pakistan pre-11 September
2,000,000
Refugees elsewhere in region pre-11 September 195,000
new refugees in Pakistan since 11 September 100,000
New refugees in Iran since 11 September 20,000
Current estimated INTERNALLY Displaced (as of Nov. 21) (IDPs) 1,200,000

also backed up by BBC
http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/us/trust/011210_afghan.shtml
Read more here.
http://www.reliefweb.int/w/rwb.nsf/480fa8736b88bbc3c12564f6004c8ad5/013c8a3e503fc42b49256bd4000751b0?OpenDocument
The overwhelming majority some 845,000 coming back from Pakistan, while more than 64,000 have returned from Iran and over 9,000 from the Central Asian states.

In addition, an estimated 200,000 Afghans have spontaneously returned from Pakistan and Iran since the appointment of the Afghan interim government in December.
Strike 3....
YOUR OUT!!!

I think you can do the math from here.
In the future please read the article first do some research, and stop getting most of your news from indymedia.
Where did you learn how to debate anyway, Chomsky? LOL.

Scott

Posted by: Scott at June 12, 2002 01:55 PM

Massoud, Hekmatyar, and Rabbani all started their rebellion against the Daoud government in 1975, years before the US was involved. Our fault?

And more civilians died in the 1979 Soviet pacification of Herat by aerial bombing and street fighting IN THREE DAYS than died in the entire US campaign against the Taliban. Even if you use the low estimates of mere "thousands". Who's worse? Is it possible the Afghan people can tell the difference?

Posted by: lakefxdan at June 12, 2002 11:12 PM

Southpaw criticizes "our indifference" in Afghanistan. Southie, you know GODDAMN WELL that if the US HADN'T shown indifference, you would be talking about "violations of international law" right now. Next time I see Chomsky in his red $35,000 Audi A4 (that's what he drives, Southie, did you know that?) in Central Square, I'll try to ask him about this tendency of his and his little cultists.

Posted by: Just as Anonymous as Southpaw! at June 13, 2002 05:38 AM

Hey "Just as Anonymous"? Just thought I'd throw my two cents on your name -- rather than use the MediaWhoresOnline tack of "using the same tactics as our opponents" or whatever, why not just stand up and use your real name? If we all sink down to the level of our opponents, it sure will get ugly & boring quick.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 13, 2002 10:23 AM
Post a comment









Remember personal info?






overwhelming majority some 845,000 coming back from Pakistan, while more than 64,000 have returned from Iran and over 9,000 from the Central Asian states.

In addition, an estimated 200,000 Afghans have spontaneously returned from Pakistan and Iran since the appointment of the Afghan interim government in December.
Strike 3....
YOUR OUT!!!

I think you can do the math from here.
In the future please read the article first do some research, and stop getting most of your news from indymedia.
Where did yonewsreview.com">Scott at June 12, 2002 01:55 PM

Massoud, Hekmatyar, and Rabbani all started their rebellion against the Daoud government in 1975, years before the US was involved. Our fault?

And more civilians died in the 1979 Soviet pacification of Herat by aerial bombing and street fighting IN THREE DAYS than died in the entire US campaign against the Taliban. Even if you use the low estimates of mere "thousands". Who's worse? Is it possible the Afghan people can tell the difference?

Posted by: lakefxdan at June 12, 2002 11:12 PM

Southpaw criticizes "our indifference" in Afghanistan. Southie, you know GODDAMN WELL that if the US HADN'T shown indifference, you would be talking about "violations of international law" right now. Next time I see Chomsky in his red $35,000 Audi A4 (that's what he drives, Southie, did you know that?) in Central Square, I'll try to ask him about thiPosted by: lakefxdan at June 12, 2002 11:12 PM

Southpaw criticizes "our indifference" in Afghanistan. Southie, you know GODDAMN WELL that if the US HADN'T shown indifference, you would be talking about "violations of international law" right now. Next time I see Chomsky in his red $35,000 Audi A4 (that's what he drives, Southie, did you know that?) in Central Square, I'll try to ask him about this tendency of his and his little cultists.

Posted by: Just as Anonymous as Southpaw! at June 13, 2002 05:38 AM

Hey "Just as Anonymous"? Just thought I'd throw my two cents on your name -- rather than use the MediaWhoresOnline tack of "using the same tactics as our opponents" or whatever, why not just stand up and use your real name? If we all sink down to the level of our opponents, it sure will get ugly & boring quick.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 13, 2002 10:23 AM
Post a comment









Remember personal info?






= true; } else { document.comments_form.bakecookie[1].checked = true; } //--> document.comments_form.bakecookie[1].checked = true; } //--> = true; } else { document.comments_form.bakecookie[1].checked = true; } //-->