Islamic radicals kill more polio workers | Why Evolution Is True

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One of the most pernicious effects of religion is the opposition of some faiths to modern health care. I’ve posted on this frequently, especially about American religious sects which prohibit health care, vaccination, and blood transfusions for children, children who have no ability to make medical choices. As a result, many of those children have died. Although these faiths might be considered “extreme,” the rest of us have made the laws that exempt their adherents from the necessity to take proper care of their children.

Even more horrible is the tendency of militant Muslims, particularly the Taliban, to murder those who are trying to vaccinate children against polio.This is happening in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and parts of Africa. It’s not just the shots, either—oral polio vaccines are considered just as un-Islamic.

The Guardian, the New York Times, and Jihad Watch report that another five vaccination workers—all Pakistanis—were killed in the last two weeks. As theGuardian notes:

Five female health workers vaccinating children against polio have been shot dead in Pakistan in a series of attacks blamed on Islamist militants. One victim was a 17-year-old schoolgirl volunteer.

Four of the killings, which officials said were carried out by masked men on motorbikes, took place in the southern city of Karachi, Pakistan’s commercial capital, on the second day of a drive to eradicate the disease from the country.

The fifth, of the schoolgirl, occurred in the violent western city of Peshawar. According to some reports, a sixth health worker, a man, was also killed in Karachi.

It was not clear who was behind the shootings, but Taliban insurgents have repeatedly denounced the anti-polio campaign as a western plot.

The anti-Islamophobes can thus blame this on colonialism, but that’s a stretch, for anti-Westernism is a characteristic of Islamism (read The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright). 

Written By: Jerry Coyne
continue to source article at whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com

30 COMMENTS

  1. JC struck the wrong balance here by downplaying this. The memories of the deceived and the harmed are long and the Taliban are just the one’s to exploit it.

    He could have mentioned this as another appropriate caution AND still made his point about the Taliban wickedness. The very last thing we should do if we are truly to win hearts and minds is forget “our” mistakes.

    • In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

      JC struck the wrong balance here by downplaying this. The memories of the deceived and the harmed are long and the Taliban are just the one’s to exploit it.

      Talibans are illiterate, wild, barbaric, child molesting, honor killing, acid throwing rapists. They do stoning and kidnapping. They are wife-beating, circumcising, misogynistic polygamists. They are not sparing juvenile like Malala. They are anti-education and anti-vaccination. I don’t think one has to take position on both sides of this debate and indirectly justifying the actions of Talibans. Good job JC.

      • In reply to #8 by prabo.bhil:

        In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

        JC struck the wrong balance here by downplaying this. The memories of the deceived and the harmed are long and the Taliban are just the one’s to exploit it.

        Talibans are illiterate, wild, barbaric, child molesting, honor killing, acid throwing rapists. They do stoni…

        You entirely miss my point. I am not asking for more care with the Taliban. I am asking for more care with the sensibilities of ordinary Pakistanis (who comprise, for instance, Mulala’s fellow students) who greatly outnumber the Taliban but are parasitised by them.

        Something tells me you have a somewhat narrow view of the country’s demography.

        • In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

          You entirely miss my point. I am not asking for more care with the Taliban. I am asking for more care with the sensibilities of ordinary Pakistanis (who comprise, for instance, Mulala’s fellow students) who greatly outnumber the Taliban but are parasitised by them.

          It seems to me that you are somewhat suggesting sensible ordinary Pakistanis to capitulate to the demands and wishes of Taliban to live peaceful lives because Taliban are bunch of whining mentally retarded kids with guns and grenades and quran. Because CIA did fake vaccination program to kill ObL, you seem to be suggesting that the plight of ordinary sensible Pakistanis and anti-polio campaigners lies on CIA’s inability to appease and kowtow before barking mad Taliban by not finding a way to kill the terrorist ObL by fake vaccination. I don’t think it would be sensible to appease those scumbags who loves death more than their lives. Taliban really need no extra excuses to commit heinous crimes as their religious scriptures are already filled with excuses. Many ordinary Pakistanis think that the recently dead Taliban commander who mastermind the shooting of Malala, was a real hero and martyr.

          It’s really a pity that Pakistani Govt. despite of its huge military expenditures, reluctant to teach a lesson to these hypocritically pious scumbags because of intense Islamic sentiments that runs through the veins of most Pakistanis.

          • In reply to #22 by prabo.bhil:

            In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

            I’m sorry. You aren’t getting this at all. I don’t care what the Taliban think. Least of all do I want to appease THEM! I care what ordinary Pakistani folk think. If they think that immunisation programs may not be beneficent acts but malign then the Taliban are licensed to commit atrocities on their behalf which has the sad side effect of confirming their prejudice.

      • In reply to #8 by prabo.bhil:

        I have no difficulty condemning both the Taliban and the CIA on this one.

        Just because the Taliban are bad, or worse than the CIA, that does not make the CIA’s conduct remotely defensible. It is part of a larger theme – including for instance unmanned drone attacks in the heart of Pakistan – which collectively make Pakistanis distrustful (to put it mildly) of anything and everything America/the West is doing.

        We need hearts and minds on “our” side. What America is doing right now is acting as recruiting sergeant for the next generation of terrorists.

    • In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

      JC struck the wrong balance here by downplaying this. The memories of the deceived and the harmed are long and the Taliban are just the one’s to exploit it.

      He could have mentioned this as another appropriate caution AND still made his point about the Taliban wickedness. The very last thing we shou…

      Yes, that was a very destructive move but (call me cynical) I don’t think it has anything to do with this attack. I think it’s quite obvious that the Talibans are actively trying to ban everything that could actually help their people. Why? Because that’s the only way they can stay in power. If the people realized how superior the western world is in almost every aspect of life they surely would be more reluctant to follow these religious fanatics who offer them nothing but suffering and death.

      • In reply to #18 by Nunbeliever:

        In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

        I don’t think it has anything to do with this attack.

        But it gives them some extra cover for their actions amongst ordinary folk. More to the point, it allows an attack on what may otherwise appear to be an altruistic act sponsored by the West. Its very clever.

      • In reply to #18 by Nunbeliever:

        If the people realized how superior the western world is in almost every aspect of life they surely would be more reluctant to follow these religious fanatics who offer them nothing but suffering and death.

        Britain alone has millions of people of Pakistani descent as do other developed nations. Mostly here by choice, because they know this is a better place to be. And they will talk to friends and relatives in Pakistan. And Pakistan is on the internet and has TV etc…

        I don’t think it’s really a secret any more, is it?

    • Historically in the UK there has always been a handful of crooks who go around masquerading as gas men or electric meter readers to rob old folks in their homes. This explains why so many Help the Aged staff go around gunning down real gas men and electric meter readers. You really cannot blame them.

      In reply to #1 by phil rimmer:

      JC struck the wrong balance here by downplaying this. The memories of the deceived and the harmed are long and the Taliban are just the one’s to exploit it.

      He could have mentioned this as another appropriate caution AND still made his point about the Taliban wickedness. The very last thing we shou…

  2. Phil has made my point for me. The CIA’s fake vaccination campaign, as a cover for hunting Bin Laden, has poisoned the well and turned many pious Muslims (not just the Taliban nutters) against western efforts to provide them with decent healthcare and to render polio as obsolete as smallpox.

    What the CIA did was shameful, bordering on a war crime. At the very least, America should apologise profusely and take serious steps to ensure that there is never any repetition of such conduct.

    I won’t hold my breath.

  3. Come on, you really think this story has anything to do with the killing? I don’t know for sure but I am ready to bet that talibans killed nurses and doctors way before anyone had heard about Bin Laden.
    Why do we have to make up poor excuses for people who don’t need them, as the only thing they need to justify themselves is their holy book.

    • I’d say you’ve lost your bet. It sure didn’t make things easier for the Health care workers in question. The campaign against polio workers really became significantly more deadly after the Bin Laden incident became public. It gave the Taliban more ammunition and the fence sitters reason to support the nutters against reason and humanity. jcw

      .In reply to #3 by I-like-facts:

      Come on, you really think this story has anything to do with the killing? I don’t know for sure but I am ready to bet that talibans killed nurses and doctors way before anyone had heard about Bin Laden.
      Why do we have to make up poor excuses for people who don’t need them, as the only thing they nee…

    • In reply to #3 by I-like-facts:

      Come on, you really think this story has anything to do with the killing? I don’t know for sure but I am ready to bet that talibans killed nurses and doctors way before anyone had heard about Bin Laden.
      Why do we have to make up poor excuses for people who don’t need them, as the only thing they nee…

      “I-like-facts” somehow doesn’t fit with “I don’t know for sure but I am ready to bet …”

      Michael

  4. And who will they be blaming when thousands of their children are crippled or dead in the next polio epidemic? One thing I’m sure of is it’s not going to be themselves or their insane religion.

    • In reply to #6 by Sue Blue:

      And who will they be blaming when thousands of their children are crippled or dead in the next polio epidemic? One thing I’m sure of is it’s not going to be themselves or their insane religion.

      1.The Great Satan/Obama
      2. Da Jooooooooozzzz

      Alternatively, nobody. “Allah wills it…”

  5. There can be no doubt that the Taliban would be happy to allow the CIA’s fake vaccine programme to be used as justification for any future killings, but quiet simply the Taliban are a nasty regressive and brutish organisation who kill to ensure control and loyalty.

  6. I entirely agree that the fake vaccination spying episode was dumb and a gift to the Taliban, but I think it can be argued that the Taliban don’t need any excuses, and that their conduct is jeopardizing the wellbeing of all their brethren.

    On a different tack, we in the UK need to be on guard too; I’ve just signed a petition opposing the call for sexual segregation in universities that UUK caved in to; the political wing of Islam is trying it on here as well!

    Further, although it may seem arrogant of me to say so, I think it’s safe to say that Americans needs to be vigilant with regard to their troglodyte wing of Christianity.

    The “mature liberal democracies” may have managed to escape the murderous grip Christianity once exercised over them, witness the American constitution, but it seems to me that this weird human construct organized religion is Frankenteinian, and always on heat.

    • In reply to #11 by Stafford Gordon:

      I think it can be argued that the Taliban don’t need any excuses, and that their conduct is jeopardizing the wellbeing of all their brethren.

      The Taliban are a Pashtun liberation movement, fighting to retain their medieval way of life. Of course, they do ‘need’ propaganda, true or false, which inspires their fellow tribesmen to fight the ‘West’ and, as they see it, its minions.

    • In reply to #11 by Stafford Gordon:

      I entirely agree that the fake vaccination spying episode was dumb and a gift to the Taliban, but I think it can be argued that the Taliban don’t need any excuses,

      Don’t quite get this. No Taliban behaviour has been even partially excused, has it? They simply exploit our loss of hearts and minds to enhance their winning of those same hearts and minds.

      • In reply to #15 by phil rimmer:

        In reply to #11 by Stafford Gordon:

        I entirely agree that the fake vaccination spying episode was dumb and a gift to the Taliban, but I think it can be argued that the Taliban don’t need any excuses,

        Don’t quite get this. No Taliban behaviour has been even partially excused, has it? They simply ex…

        This isn’t going to help me squelch those rumours that I’m on the CIA payroll but I agree with the people who say that making a big fuss about what the CIA did here is overblown. I think one of the crucial things they did was they made sure the people actually got vaccinated. If they happened to use some of the data collected for their own purposes, compared to some other things they do — e.g. working with people who use torture as a means of interrogation — this was fairly benign and given that it actually worked and I think almost everyone on the planet is glad Bin Laden is no longer among us I don’t see why all the fuss. The point about the Taliban is right on, they are going to make up propoganda and lies about the CIA no matter what and there are plenty of REAL things, far more evil, that the CIA has done that get almost no attention in the US but people in Islamic nations know about (e.g., helping to overthrow the Shah of Iran) that worrying about giving them one more bullet point to add to their talking point slides of “Why CIA is Evil” doesn’t seem like that big of a deal to me.

        • In reply to #16 by Red Dog:

          In reply to #15 by phil rimmer:

          This isn’t going to help me squelch those rumours that I’m on the CIA payroll

          I’m very pro CIA this century. It was they who won through Clinton’s Oil first policy to alert the US to the great moral good of Ahmad Shah Massoud.

          They just fucked up because they didn’t think things through quite enough. My complaint was with JC who could have been more thorough in his recounting of events. To win in complex situations approximations are not good enough. Second order effects can be accommodated. Our second order maybe someone else’s first order and vice versa.

  7. In reply to aldous # 13.

    I understand what you say, but it’s impossible to retrieve the past, and so it’s illogical to try to impose it on others in the present.

    Having said which, despite Churchill’s pronouncement in 1897 that the Taliban are most probably invincible on their home territory, invaders are still wasting lives, time and resources trying to defeat them; so, what kind of logic is that?

  8. If polio vaccines are considered un-Islamic then so should motorcycles, modern guns and pretty much all other technological stuff they use. If these Talibans were actually true to their faith they would live as the prophet Muhammad did back in the bronze age… Of course they are nothing but hypocritical scumbags who need to be erased from the surface of this planet.

  9. What saddens me is that the government doesn’t seem to be bothered about making vaccination centres secure. A few soldiers posted at these places would probably have prevented these deaths.

    • In reply to #25 by I Find Your Lack of Faith Disturbing:

      What saddens me is that the government doesn’t seem to be bothered about making vaccination centres secure. A few soldiers posted at these places would probably have prevented these deaths.

      What “centres”? A lot of this work is carried out by health workers travelling from village to village in “tribal” areas like Waziristan, where there are few or no health centres and even less government. The presence of soldiers would be provocative to tribal leaders who are, nominally, self-governing.

      Pakistan is a dog’s breakfast on things like this.

      • In reply to #26 by Stevehill:

        In reply to #25 by I Find Your Lack of Faith Disturbing:

        .What “centres”? A lot of this work is carried out by health workers travelling from village to village in “tribal” areas like Waziristan, where there are few or no health centres and even less government. The presence of soldiers would be provocative to tribal leaders who are, nominally, self-governing.

        I don’t know whether the health workers are mad enough to take risk to go to those lawless tribal areas, this article clearly points out that the attacks are even happening in cities like Karachi and Peshawar. And I am quite sure that polio vaccinations are carried out either in make-shift or permanent health centers in those cities.

  10. In reply to #23 by phil rimmer,

    If they think that immunisation programs may not be beneficent acts but malign then the Taliban are licensed to commit atrocities on their behalf which has the sad side effect of confirming their prejudice.

    I would rather go with the following: Those Taliban are sadists and they really enjoy killing people. They are addicted to kill people and blow themselves up in thought of limitless comfort of heaven. They find the meaning of life in killing people and blowing themselves up in crowded places like the ritual gathering of different sect, religion, culture (music, dance, alcohol consumption) and even in funeral and often without discrimination (ALLAH SAID, “KILL THE INFIDELS”). They don’t care whether children would suffer or not. They are licensed to kill by almighty Allah. They are the warriors of allah. They don’t give a shit of what ordinary Pakistani people would think of them.

    Ordinary Pakistani people are habituated in hearing daily news of explosion and massacre and killing from different parts of their country. Ordinary Pakistani people are regularly fed with the idea that ObL is a mythical creature and never existed and 9/11 is an inside job. These are all western conspiracies.

    So, I doubt your conclusion.

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