Wednesday, May 16, 2007

US Madrassas

The "smart" thinking continues...

American forces in Afghanistan are building madrassas in an attempt to persuade parents not to send their children across the border to Pakistan for instruction at hard-line religious schools. Work has started on two "super-madrassas" in Paktika, which borders Pakistan, and more are planned. The American government is also paying for the refurbishment of mosques in the area, in the hope of winning over religious leaders.

And all the while they know that these madrassas may be used by radical preachers. But they "hope" that won't be the case.

The US military insists that the schools, which it calls "centres for educational excellence", will be administered by the Afghan education ministry, but admits there is a risk that they will be vulnerable to radical Islamic preachers. Madrassas in Pakistan have frequently been linked to the indoctrination of young Muslim men who have joined the insurgents in Afghanistan or been trained to become terrorists in the West.

But that won't stop this hare-brained scheme from continuing. I was always under the impression that a military's hearts and minds program was supposed to help it, not the enemy.

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