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Send Clowns
22nd Sep 2001, 16:26
I have just come across an interesting suggestion in today's Telegraph (I think it was originally made a few days ago, but I don't read the paper every day). The suggestion is that the international coalition America starts should carpet bomb Afghani populations. With food.

OK, literally using bombers to deliver food is impractical and unwise, but in my opinion they would win the war if they delivered food rather than explosives to these starving people. Consider it : no fight against Islam, so no encouragement of moderates towards extremism. A population of warrior tribes who hate the Taliban suddenly have food, giving them the strength to fight, but that population are muslims, so no-one could pin an accusation of anti-islamic war against the USA. Friendly muslim nations could be given military aid to support the Afghani insurgents, then they would succeed (direct support of insurgents is dangerous, but supporting nations to give them air cover, or armoured support is less risky for the future). Bin Laden would suddenly see his support evaporate, and see the need to be very rapidly elsewhere.

This is all very much in line with liberal and christian ideas of kindness, yet satisfies any need for justice. We would end the cycle of violence, yet with the guilty punished. All at lower cost than a military campaign.

Remember USA, 'hearts and minds'.

AerBabe
22nd Sep 2001, 21:16
I saw the same story on BBC1's Breakfast programme a few days ago. They were interviewing a photo journalist who had been living out there for a few years. It was a refreshing change to see someone looking at the problem laterally, and peacefully.

Conky Joe
22nd Sep 2001, 22:18
Gets my vote - no bacon rolls though otherwise the gesture might backfire!

CJ

Send Clowns
22nd Sep 2001, 23:17
The story did mention Halal food, Conky! And after the embarrassment of the Ethiopians turning down US Army rations (MREs, Meals Ready to Eat, already nicknamed 'Meals Rejected by Ethiopians' due to terrible taste, then became literally so!) they should check on the culture, and what food would be preferred!

Velvet
23rd Sep 2001, 00:56
Good idea clowns, but we've been sending 6000 trucks of aid (according to Oxfam) per month into Afghanistan, and we're still the enemy ;(


Perhaps we should establish what they want, not what makes us feel better. Are hand-outs really the way forward, or just a sop to our consciences.

Mac the Knife
23rd Sep 2001, 01:47
This brilliant idea also occurred to me in the bath last night, but I didn't restrict it to food. Add radios, TVs, generators, MagiMixes, flush toilets, Prozac, high rises, garden gnomes, vibrators, go-karts, hay fever, pornographic magazines, Spiderman toys, Estee Lauder, backyard barbecues, garbage trucks, Private Eye, plumbers, cell-phones, cordless curlers, McDonald's franchises, computers, frozen sheep brains, garbage cans, Volksies, gardens sheds (sans Tony), antimacassars, Pokemon, spray paint, Lego sets and whatever else you can come up with and within a month they'll all have forgotten about the Taliban and Bean Ladle

Nuke 'em with all the conveniences, paraphenalia and detritus of our beloved Western world and keep on doing it - it'll be much much cheaper and far more effective. And the necessary airlift will give employment to pilots. Guvnor, where are you? Just don't forget that it was my idea!

As Mark Twain remarked, "Soap and education are not as sudden as a massacre, but they are more deadly in the long run."

Send Clowns
23rd Sep 2001, 17:29
Agreed, Velvet, but we also have to make it noticed. A full military-style campaign, ignoring the Taliban, taking the food to the people by road and air-drop (very dramatic on TV, airdropping food) protected by military force would be noticed if it was practical.

Excellent idea Mac. When it's all over open McDonalds in Kabul. If that becomes popular enough there'll be no-one healthy enough to fight if the new lot turn against the West as well!

Velvet
23rd Sep 2001, 20:55
All very well to send supplies, but has any one even considered how to get them to the people in need, rather than aiding the terrorists.

In a month or so, the snow will fall to 6 feet deep in places, the temperatures will plumet and any supplies not immediately collected will be buried under more falls of snow. The air is thin and shelter only in caves, who will deliver the food and blanket, risking being shot by the terrorist fighters now taking cover in the mountains.

There are apparently around 2.5 million people now leaving the cities. The Taliban have threatened execution of the remaining citizens, if they attempt to leave the cities and still they cannot halt this tide of humanity.

Most of the cities are deserted now, silent and empty - I wonder what the Taleban think of their strategy, do they sit and view the ashes of their hopes and the devastation they have wrought. A region already devastated by famine and war - they have indeed much to answer for when they finally go to whatever afterlife they belief in.

Paterbrat
27th Sep 2001, 02:01
You mean step up on the relief effort that has been in place and putting aid into Afghanistan for some years, maybe send in some more aid workers?
Well yes you might well have to send some escorts along to prevent the new aid workers joining the old ones.
The Taliban have been quite happy to be free to crush all opposition without the neccesity to have to actualy look after the people, not when there is the rest of the world to do it for them, lets see tonight there was a UN appeal for millions in extra contributions to feed the Afghans displaced by hostile actions???
Bob Mugabe was working this scam quite well but attention has been switched away from him, wouldn't that be sad if he had miscaculated and he doesn't get quite what he wanted, ie starvation and no aid because everyone is in a state of turmoil

Rollingthunder
27th Sep 2001, 02:15
An interesting concept... confine activity to directly air dropping supplies to the people in the interior and on the borders and in the camps.

It might build them up to eventually discarding the Taliban idiots and at least show the world a mountain of compassion for the people of Afganistan. Must not supply the taliban, however as in the recent confiscation of 1,400 tons of military rations.

Random acts of kindness can be powerful things. Just keep religion out of it.

Edited for ...you know

[ 26 September 2001: Message edited by: Rollingthunder ]

Paterbrat
2nd Oct 2001, 00:17
Obviously considered a good idea, lashings of aid are in fact now pouring in.
Taliban still defiant, even claiming Bin L under their control which I suppose effectively links them to incident.
Hmm must step up more aid,this has just got to work some time, they must love us by now, just a bit more and they will spontaneously revolt, overthrow the Taliban elect a Parliament/council of really sensible chaps and rejoin the world fold
????%5##*(@)!!! Not working.
Come on lets really put our backs into this pour the aid in, lots and lot's of it , bigger, better, harder, faster. It's going to work just now, any minute now, really....

Axerock
2nd Oct 2001, 16:09
I agree that along with the food we deliver entertainment.

The problem is that there is no electrics to plug anything into (maybe we can come up with some sort of wind generator that will harness the movements from the swaying ankles of all the people that the Taliban hang like wind chimes in the streets).

Solution - How about we air drop all those bloody mime artists and street theatre people that bore the tits of any rational thinking person into the country. If the snow is 6 feet deep and they cannot get out - well think of it as a bonus!

I reckon after a week of that the Taliban will surrender (or kill themselves - I know that I would).

Mind you, we would all be prosecuted under the Geneva convention for use of cruel and unnatural torture (is torture ever natural!).

But maybe it would be worth it. Ahhh a world without street theatre - I don't think the freedom loving people of Afghanistan know how lucky they are.

[ 03 October 2001: Message edited by: Axerock ]