Please tell me this is an oversight. The Taliban isn’t terrorist?

August 10, 2010

Otherwise, I really, really want to hear the reasons why the State Department left the Taliban off the list of terrorist groups:

A new State Department report designating terrorist organizations notably excludes one group: the Taliban. The U.S. has been fighting a war in Afghanistan for almost a decade aimed at “defeating the Taliban,” Taliban members repeatedly have threatened and killed American citizens and lawmakers have increased pressure on State to add the Taliban to the list.

Earlier this summer, a group of congressional Democrats sent a letter to Secretary of State Hilary Clinton urging her to begin the process of categorizing the Taliban as a terrorist group. In June, Sens. Charles Schumer and Kristen Gillibrand of New York and Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez of New Jersey proposed legislation that would immediately add the Taliban to the terrorist list.

Yet the State Department’s report (due on April 30 but released last week), did not include the Taliban with groups such as al-Qaida, Hamas and the Real Irish Republican Army (RIRA). To qualify, an organization must meet only three criteria: It must be foreign, it must engage in terrorist activity and its activity must threaten the security of the U.S. or its citizens.

Well, let’s see:

  1. The Taliban is largely a Pashtun group that straddles the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and, last time I checked, that’s not in the United States, so it’s “foreign.” Check.
  2. Does it engage in terrorist activity? Oh, gee, just search the last 7-8 years of news records for suicide bombings, beheadings, and mutilations – you’ll get more than you can shake a stick at. Or, if you want just one, how about the Times Square bombing attempt? Check.
  3. Does it threaten our security? Well, we invaded Afghanistan because the Taliban were sheltering al Qaeda, who slaughtered thousands of us on September 11th. And they’ve tried to get in on the act themselves. (See the aforementioned Times Square plot.) Ergo… Check.

So, I have to ask: Just what is it that makes the Taliban not a terrorist organization, O Wise Ones of Foggy Bottom? I’d almost prefer to believe you just missed this while dashing off to the evening’s cocktail party, rather than that you were so cynical as to leave it off as part of a negotiating strategy with our sworn enemies, so your bosses in the Administration could find a way out of a war they’ve never really supported. Nah, it couldn’t be that.

And how weird is it that I find myself on the same side as Chuck Schumer?

Via Mitrebox.

ADDENDUM: And yes, I know Bush didn’t put them there, either. It was questionable then, and it’s just plain dumb now, after years of experience with them.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Your stimulus dollars at work

August 10, 2010

Sean Mahoney is running for Congress from New Hampshire’s 1st district and has a question for incumbent Carole Shea Porter (D-Gimme Your Money): Just what did we get for all the debt incurred with the $787 billion stimulus package your party passed? To provide an example from their own district, Mahoney tells the tale of New Hampshire’s own bridge to nowhere:

Let’s emphasize a couple of points (just in case YouTube is having troubles, again): the bridge is not a bridge – it’s more of a pier, stopping in the middle of the river. $150,000 of our tax dollars were paid to resurface a “bridge” no one uses; the real bridge is 100′ further down the river. (Visit Big Government for photos.) Meanwhile, about a third of New Hampshire’s real bridges are in need of real repair.

Now, aren’t you happy we borrowed all that money from China so that Carole Shea Porter could get New Hampshire its own bridge to nowhere?

If you are, how about making a donation – to Sean Mahoney?

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)