The Taliban, doing God’s Work or Something

Militants’ video shows execution of policemen in Pakistan

Taliban militants on the Afghanistan border of Pakistan raided Afghani police waypoints and killed 30 police officers incold blood.

“Seventeen out of the 30 killed were brutally executed with their hands tied,” military spokesman Major General Athar Abbas said.

The undated video posted on the website Liveleak showed the kidnapped soldiers in local dress lined up before four militants with covered faces and a man appearing to be the militants’ commander.

These are the enemies of Allah’s religion and have left Islam,” the man said in the local Pashtu language before the militants shot the prisoners with assault rifles. “Allah orders to kill such people.”

Perhaps they were taking a page from the Quran, which states:

“They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them.” Qur’an (4:89) (i.e., if they turn from Islam, kill them.)

Or, put more simply in the Hadith of Mohammed’s life:

“[In the words of] Allah’s Apostle, ‘Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him.” Bukhari (84:57)

All too often, I see libertarians take a battered-wife-syndrome approach to foreign policy and terrorism–that somehow, it’s our fault when we are attacked, something we did must have caused it. Somehow, it escapes their conception that there are people in the world with nonrational (to us) motivations for their ideology.

I think it stems from the human tendency to interpret others’ motives and thoughts based on what we know. Most libertarians grew up in a Western, secular society where religion played, at most, a small and passive role in their day to day life. They are not aware of these passages in the Quran, or are not aware of what the Taliban and other Islamic extremists say in their own words (hint: they talk about interventionism and global warming because they know it will affect OUR behavior and make THEIR jobs easier).

They have trouble relating to societies that are dominated by religion and its mores, and people who firmly believe in a religion (the tenets of which libertarians know little about).

Libertarians might also have a reflexive response that, wherever there is a problem, to assign the cause to the institution of government in some way. It’s a good default outlook IMO, but in the case of Islamic terror, too many libertarians ignore the evidence when the motive is made clear and explicit.

The next time someone mocks the notion that “they hate us because we’re free,” ask them how they enjoy freedom of religion.

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