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banner Monday, 3 December, 2001, 16:36 GMT
The Afghan trap: Your comments
I would just like to say that your programme made me think that my licence fee was money well spent. Keep it up.
Alan Finlay, UK

I would like the UN to take the seven Mujahideen leaders to the Human Rights Court

Abdul, UK

I left Afghanistan in the late 1960's, the country was fine, and my last visit was in 1973. My father supported all Mujahideen groups with money and Medicines while they were fighting the Russians when the country was invaded. When Rabbani came into power, my father was kidnapped and held for ransom. After six months, his office had to pay $2 million for his release. He died a year later in London as a result of the severe beatings. All his businesses and money were taken.

I would like the UN to take the seven Mujahideen leaders to the Human Rights Court, and also check their personal bank accounts. They have robbed from people and foreign aid instead of helping the Afghan People and instead of supporting the proper Mujahideen soldiers when the freedom fighters were fighting the Russians in 1979.

I have meet freedom fighters in London when they were fighting in Afghanistan in the Russian invasion time where they were told by these leaders, "because you are a Mujahid, in any village you will go they will feed you" They were given no wages and also were told "when you kill a Russian soldier you take his equipment and you kill another Russian soldier."

I am an Afghan citizen; I am not a communist but a capitalist. I do not support the Taleban, the Northern Alliance, or the so-called "Coalition."
Abdul, UK

I've just watched Correspondent and it was definitely one of the best reports I've seen made on the situation since September.
Steve Lowrie, UK

Congratulation it was a wonderful programme. To be honest there is no future for Afghan people. The Northern Alliance had the power 5 or 6 years ago before the Taleban. They destroyed the lives of thousands and thousands of innocent Afghans for no reason! Life never got better from the day these people became on power. The reporter did an excellent job, they are an excellent people. I'm from Afghanistan and the things I have seen on television tonight are the truth, it only a little bit of what has happened to the people of Afghanistan. The reality is that America, Pakistan, Iran and other neighbouring countries do not care about Afghanistan and will never be care they will always try to keep these disaster/conflict in the poor countries.
Shah, London

I just finished watching your documentary on Afghanistan. I am a native American and have been living in the UK for the last 20 yrs. I am also a semi professional photographer and have been to Israel to shoot the Palestinian/Israeli conflict last Christmas. It would appear we have a no win situation out there. The only real solution would be to make Afghanistan a Republic, and form a Senate, made up of all the tribal leaders together. The fighting out there has got to stop.
Alan Krell

The narrator seemed to imply that Afghans were some kind of inferior species, motivated only by money, hypocritical in their alliances, dishonest, etc. etc.

Barbara Norden

Throughout the Correspondent programme on Afghanistan, which I have just watched, the narrator seemed to imply that Afghans were some kind of inferior species, motivated only by money, hypocritical in their alliances, dishonest, etc. etc. There appeared no attempt to understand the forces at work or to put things into cultural perspective -- just a general air of "look at these terrible people".

But in fact nothing was shown here that could not be matched by the behaviour of other peoples in recent history. In the West, we just dress these things up differently. We are perhaps more adept than the Afghans at protecting our own peace and prosperity by exporting exploitation and violence elsewhere. Is that supposed to mean we are better than they are?

Most of us find it difficult to contemplate the treatment of women in Afghanistan -- But Afghani women's organisations have made it very clear that they do not need Westerners tut-tutting from a superior perspective in order to help them achieve liberation!

However interesting the footage and the interviews, this kind of commentary does a great disservice both to Afghanistan and to British audiences.
Barbara Norden, GB

A superb analysis of the current situation in that benighted, war-torn land. The tragic situation was summed up so succinctly by the comment that we in the West did not go to war to bring peace to Afghanistan but to ensure our own security. The sole aim of the US is still to apprehend Bin Laden and his organisation and if and when that goal is realised then it is likely that the commitment of the world's only superpower will quickly wither away leaving Europe, Russia and others to the difficult and perhaps impossible task of winning the peace.

With the likes of Gul Agha, the former governor of Kandahar now in the saddle it is unlikely that democracy will prevail in a culture that regards mercy as a sign of weakness. Tony Blair may want genuinely want to build a pluralist society, but unless the aggrieved party to whom he is a mere appendage is willing to look beyond naked revenge there will be no early improvement in the all too predictable fortunes of the indigenous population , particularly the Pashtuns who make up the majority of the outgoing Taleban regime.
Bill Jackson, UK

I thought that your, otherwise excellent, report was marred by a failure to tell about the democratic and progressive government, whose overthrow by the US-backed Mujahideen led to the current horrors. I believe that it is a misrepresentation to claim that the Russians "invaded". They were invited in by the legitimate government to defend it against those Mujahideen.

You correctly commented on the virtual house arrest and slavery of much of the female population of Afghanistan. At least in the major cities, women used to have equal rights and secular education for girls and boys was starting to reach the villages.
Barbara Finch, UK

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