How to do civil disobedience

Some people just will not get the point. Take the Taliban, for instance – they are so confused.

Taliban leaders in Pakistan are blocking a polio vaccination campaign that was to target 161,000 children in North Waziristan.

The Taliban commander Hafiz Gul Bahadur is demanding that the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) halt drone strikes, which have heavily targeted the mountainous region, according to a story in the New York Times. The move could prove a setback for the global initiative to eradicate polio…

Oh, no no no no, that’s all wrong. You’re supposed to impose suffering on yourself, not on 161,000 children! It’s so basic. You go on hunger strike, you don’t block polio vaccinations.

Hopelessly confused.




  1. dysomniak says

    What the fuck? Are they trying to make the fighters attacking US military assets look better by comparison or something?

  2. Pierce R. Butler says

    Given the nature of the ruse used to canvas the neighborhood where Osama Bin Laden was killed, people in that part of the world can be forgiven for regarding purported vaccination campaigns with a jaundiced eye.

    Alas, assuming our assassin-in-chief could be persuaded that saving thousands of children from a horrible disease was worth forgoing his cherished Bond-villain bombardments, the locals would suspect any vaccinators arriving in their neighborhoods as “intelligence” agents.

    Knowing BHO’s demonstrated priorities, they’d have a good case.

  3. Albert Bakker says

    I don’t think the people regard vaccination campaigns with jaundiced eyes. Otherwise they wouldn’t have to be threatened by the Taliban in their pamphlets in which they announced the ban to the locals: “violators will have no right to register a complaint if they are harmed.”

    Rather it’s politics. I suspect that given that the Taliban are savvy enough to know there is no chance in hell the US will decrease the number of attacks for a bunch of Waziri children. This show is likely to benefit a target audience in Pakistan in general.

    In the pamphlet they argue that while by the drone attacks “hundreds of our Waziristani innocent children, women and aged men have been martyred,” that polio could affect only a few among hundreds of thousands of people.”

    It doesn’t matter if it is true or not. It only matters whether the target audience believes it. And in Pakistan generally speaking, they are quite willing. American audiences I am sure are quite familiar with this political phenomenon.

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