Dear Secretary Powell:
I fully support your policy in dealing the the terrorist attack in a considered rational way, if there can be any rationality to the terrorists. But please consider Kent Madin’s suggestion as an alternative to bombing Afghanistan. It may sounds crazy, but I think it makes more sense that anything else I have heard and certainly more sense than an “eye for an eye” policy which Ghandi had said would leave everybody blind.
The writer, Kent Madin, is part-owner of Boojum Expeditions who leads trips to Mongolia and other far-flung places. He wrote from Boojum Expeditions Khovsgol Lodge Management Mongolia. I think it’s a great piece, worth sharing widely…
Bomb Them with Butter
A military response, particularly an attack on Afghanistan, is exactly what the terrorists want. It will strengthen and swell their small but fanatical ranks.
Instead, bomb Afghanistan with butter, with rice, bread, clothing and medicine. It will cost less than conventional arms, poses no threat of US casualties and just might get the populace thinking that maybe the Taliban don’t have the answers. After three years of drought and with starvation looming, let’s offer the Afghani people the vision of a new future. One that includes full stomachs.
Bomb them with information. Video players and cassettes of world leaders, particularly Islamic leaders, condemning terrorism. Carpet the country with with magazines and newspapers showing the horror of terrorism committed by their “guest”. Blitz them with laptop computers and DVD players filled with a perspective that is denied them by their government. Saturation bombing with hope will mean that some of it gets through. Send so much that the Taliban can’t collect and hide it all.
The Taliban are telling their people to prepare for Jihad. Instead, let’s give the Afghani people their first good meal in years. Seeing your family fully fed and the prospect of stability in terms of food and a future is a powerful deterrent to martyrdom. All we ask in return is that they, as a people, agree to enter the civilized world. That includes handing over terrorists in their midst.
In responding to terrorism we need to do something different.. something unexpected.. something that addresses the root of the problem. We need to take away the well of despair, ignorance and brutality from which the Osama bin Laden’s of the world water their gardens of terror.