This video from England is called Brian Haw – Banned Anti-War Demo in London.
By James Cogan:
Afghan president blames “the West” for Islamic extremism
8 September 2008
The propaganda used to justify the US-led occupation in Afghanistan typically leaves out any explanation of the origins of tendencies such as Al Qaeda, the Taliban movement and other Islamist groups resisting American and NATO troops. The spin merchants of the so-called “war on terror” would have people believe that the US and its allies are fighting religious fanatics who have no support in the country and are motivated by an inexplicable and irrational hatred of Western civilisation.
On rare occasions, however, someone deviates from the script and draws attention to historical facts regarding present-day Islamic extremism that Washington and its allies prefer to leave unmentioned. One occasion was an interview on August 19 with Time magazine with a very close American ally—Hamid Karzai, the man who was installed by the Bush administration as President of Afghanistan in 2002.
Challenged by Time to answer how an enemy could be fought that “only has annihilation as its goal”, Karzai felt compelled to note the current situation was a by-product of US support in the 1980s for the creation of an Islamic fundamentalist army to wage a jihad or holy war against a pro-Soviet regime in Afghanistan and embroil the Soviet military itself in a decade-long guerilla conflict.
Karzai told Time: “In order to fix terrorism at large, we need to remedy the wrongs of the past 30 years. Remedy means to undo. The world pushed us [Afghan jihadists] to fight the Soviets. And those who did walked away and left all the mess spread around. September 11 is a consequence of this …
“In the years of fighting against the Soviets, radicalism was the main thing. Someone like me would be called half a Muslim because we were not radical. The more radical you were the more money you were given. Radicalism became not only an ideological tool against the Soviets but a way forward economically. The more radical you presented yourself, the more money the West gave you.”
When Time protested that “it wasn’t just the West; it was Saudi Arabia, Pakistan”, who fomented Islamic extremism in Afghanistan, Karzai answered: “[T]hey were led by the West. The moderates were undermined. Afghan history and nationalism were called atheism. The more you spoke of radicalism, the better you were treated. That’s what we are paying for now.”
Karzai is intimately familiar with the US backing for Afghan jihadists in the 1980s. He ran the office of Sebghatullah Mojadeddi, the leader of one of the Mujahedin groups, and undoubtedly liaised with CIA and other US officials. His bitterness over US policy stems from the fact that the Mojadeddi faction was regarded as “moderate” as compared to the “radicals” who received the lion’s share of financial support.
From 1979 on, the US urged its allies such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan to give military and financial aid to the Islamist-based Afghan insurgents as a means of undermining the Soviet Union. Combined with direct American funds, as much as $2 billion poured in each year—the CIA’s Afghan project was by far the largest covert operation of the entire Cold War.
Controversy continues over French soldiers’ deaths in Afghanistan: here.