Tuesday, May 27, 2008

People, starvation, war criminals and justice (Part two)

Will there be justice for the Afghan people?!

Considering the current situation of Afghanistan, it seems too far away until there will be justice for the Afghans to be able to bring the war criminals before the courts.
There is a good saying in Dari (Persian) “who digs pits will one day fall in one of them” and it signifies that bad things and bad intentions due to their negative essence and nature will face with negative results, even to the doers, which signifies the accountability of the nature. While at the same time there is another saying “don’t hit some one’s door with finger, so no one hits your door with fist” and this one also means the accountability but in this one, the optional and arbitrary accountability is emphasized on, or more it means “every action can have a reaction”.
There is a caution in the second saying; “the comparison of finger and fist” is like an alert. The comparison in between “finger and fist” bewares the mind; of accountability of “benefit or loss”, accountability of actions and their reactions or consequences. This alert just awakens the mind; of a reaction, a punishment, an accountability and equality or inequality. And this reminder creates precautions before every action the minds think of.

It is also a rule of the nature that every action has a reaction; as a result of what we do something is done. And more realistic example when people do good things, the result they see is good, same is if they do bad things, the result they see would be bad, but when this rule in the hands of human beings, it is violated and not followed as it is set naturally, on the other hand at the same time, it is possible and again in the hand of human beings to balance it back “optional like the second saying”.
To balance such contravenes, phenomena like penalty and punishment are used just to normalize the rule of “do good, see good” as well as “every action has a reaction” or “finger and fist”.
Punishment in itself may be an abhorrent action since it is correlated with fear and negativity but this fear and negativity is used to bring positivism then it is reasonable, accepted and recommended when it is used for purposes like bringing social security through balance, justice and equality to maintain and secure human life in groups.

The purpose of bringing these two sayings here is to study the patterns of Afghan people’s opinions, understandings and reactions regarding the punishment or forgiveness of war criminals in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan is a country where like the first saying many pits are dug in different times but most of the pit diggers have enjoyed using those pits against the people without falling in them themselves due to different causes.

It is important to know the willingness and the ability of the Afghan people too regarding what they would do with the war criminals as well as the possibilities of what could be done in this regard.

Photo from COPASS.COM
Any thing the Afghans are willing to do or think of doing in this regard is very much related to their beliefs, their way of thinking about things and finally their ability to take any actions considering their living conditions.
In Afghanistan, unfortunately there have been thousands of cases of human rights violations, tyrannies and injustice in a period of thirty years by different regimes; the communists and socialists, Islamists like the Mujahedeen warlords and extremist Islamists like Taliban that have left hundreds of thousands of victims behind, who still can not talk about their rights and about what happened to them and who are responsible for it because of problems they face.
It again depends on how we define crimes and war. Although there are specific NGOs who write and use slogans against some of the war criminals (especially the war criminals of civil war), but in action they themselves are not better than those warlords and war criminals. The war criminals looted the people’s wealth by the power of gun but these NGOs loot the money they receive for the poor Afghan women, children, the widows, the orphans, the illiterate and etc.
Perhaps if we can not give title of war criminals to them, but we can still call them criminals since they have hands in very big embezzlements of public wealth.

On the other hands, at the same time, not only the warlords of Mujahedeen but the Taliban should also be at the top of the list of war criminals, also the people who committed crimes against humanity during the communist regimes, but in this regard there are many different opinions, but more important is to rehabilitate the living condition of the people and let them decide how to categorize the war criminals and what to do with them.
There are many reasons that the people especially who are victims or the reminders of the civil war victims in Afghanistan do not talk about trial or punishment of the warlords and the war criminals.

Poverty and lack of stable economy

Poverty and lack of a stable economy can keep people just busy in their daily lives and confines their vision only in their day and night livelihood and they do not have time, energy and thoughts about what to do with the war criminals and even when they have any thoughts about it, they do not have time to follow up, and then they do not have any access to the officials or courts, and then there are not courts in the country without a warlord or war criminals, in this case who should they refer to?.

The current situation in Afghanistan is a clear example of this reason. The global raise of cost of food has had a negative impact on the living conditions of many poor Afghans. In this regard the government has a responsibility to provide cheaper food for the people, but instead the current government takes advantages of this situation and by keeping people in starvation, for its political benefits before the elections approach and does not make enough efforts to solve this problem.

Nowadays, some can find something to eat and most can not have even only bread to eat. People are dying of hunger and starvation therefore; some people sell their family members for the survival of the rest, some attempt to kill their family members when they can not feed them because of lack of food, work and money to buy food. In this situation how can someone think of what to do with the war criminals?

Photo from COPASS.COM
The continuous ruling of war criminals on people

The Mujahedeen war criminals are still on power in different governmental departments and branches.
The reasons how they are still on power; we can say, because of the system existed in the country, lack of sovereignty of the national government in the country let any warlord rule on specific area with the power of gun and hiring some gun men.
This is also possible based on tribal, ethnic and regional basis and gave a chance to as many people who were very aggressive, tyrant and risky enough to hire more gunmen and rule on the others. The bigger warlords can rule on the people through the governmental power, whether by occupying a seat in the parliament, or in any other position in a governmental department in the capital or in the major cities and in provinces on the other hand, because the central government does not have a full control in all over the country yet, therefore the warlords still have their gun men in different areas especially in the villages and the people fear from them and can not tell anything about them where they even can get money from the people.

The continuous influences of the mullahs on the society

As an Islamic state, the people in Afghanistan are strictly religious and the mullahs are taking the biggest advantages of people’s faith, sensations and beliefs, thus most of the time people are being misused for their faith and sensation by mullahs by the name of Islam.
Mullahs can bring any change in religious issues for their own benefits and can sell “Hadises”, concoct any rule and regulation for the safety of their positions and power.
Most of these civil war criminals, are whether a senior or junior mullah and when ever there is talk on war criminals, war crimes, human rights, justice, equality and humanitarian laws, they tell the people that all these issues are produced by the western countries and are plots against Islam and religion; while people are not educated and enlightened enough to know the reality, they believe easily what the mullahs say although they are suffered by these mullahs.
That’s how the kingdom of these mullahs is still stable in the rural areas of the country.

Illiteracy and low level of education

Afghanistan is a country with a large number of illiterate people therefore illiteracy effects on the economy, productivity and then on the level of living condition. Illiteracy in addition to be one of the main causes of poverty, could be one of the reasons for why the people easily tend to believe in superstitions and religious figures can easily find a place for themselves among the people. This level of education of people is something proportional with the loss of positions of the mullahs in the society, meaning that as educated the people are, that harder it is for the mullahs to have place among the people. That is why different efforts are made by the mullahs to stop people getting enough education by any approaches.

Lack of knowledge about the laws, judicial procedures and existence of corruptions in the courts

When there is poverty and general illiteracy of course naturally the people to do not have knowledge to understand their rights and what could be done if their rights are violated.
The laws are no more than just written pieces of paper because they are not practiced and are not introduced well to people, in this case the people never know that according to the laws they have certain rights and when those rights are violated they can knock the doors of courts and get their rights back.
Some of the people who even knew about these procedures, they did not have good experience with the judicial system of the country. According to people’s experiences there has never been time when these judicial branch has done its work properly thus people never tend to rely on this branch; bribery, judgment based on personal relationships and influences on this branch has reduced the quality of it operation.

Religiously beliefs in punishment of tyrants by God

In addition to poverty and illiteracy also religiously believing that punishment of the tyrants has to be done or is done by God, made most Afghan people reluctant first to think and then talk about the trial of the war criminals in this country.
Most of the religious people, have this opinion that the judgement is done by God and human beings are weak to have a proper judgement on other human beings and this opinion is polished and strengthened by mullahs who are mostly the war criminals.

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