Frank Carbone wrote
Iran, Iraq, Saudia Arabia, Egypt, Palestine, et al.
Well, it looks like no matter who's in charge, there are places on the planet,
and groups of people, who will forever be somewhere on the other side of the
Stone Age. Take for example the following items from today's news.
Afghan Air Transport Minister Beaten to Death by Pilgrims
By LAURA KING
The Associated Press
KABUL, Afghanistan (Feb. 15) - Muslim pilgrims enraged by flight delays beat
Afghanistan's aviation minister to death, and a goodwill soccer match with
peacekeepers descended into *** amid fears of growing disorder in the
The killing of Aviation Minister Abdul Rahman on Thursday by a mob of pilgrims
trying to board flights to Mecca also raised questions about the role of
international peacekeepers, who were present on the airport grounds at the time
of the attack.
One other man aboard the plane, a member of the security detail for the
officials on board, was injured when he was thrown from the aircraft, the
Interior Ministry said.
On Friday, a melee broke out at Kabul's main soccer stadium at the start of
what had been billed as a goodwill game between peacekeepers and an Afghan
team. An overflow crowd began fighting their way through the gates, and Afghan
guards beat back the crowd with tree branches, strips of *** and rifle
butts. Peacekeepers fired warning shots in the air.
German medics in the peacekeeping force said 50 Afghans had been treated for
injuries, mostly to the head. Five peacekeepers were also treated for injuries
received when members of the crowd hurled fist-size rocks at them.
An Austrian peacekeeper ran out of the crowd with *** on his face. Other
Austrian peacekeepers used fire extinguishers and guard dogs to try to keep
back the crowds.
Play began anyway despite the clash, and peacekeepers won the game 3-1.
Afghanistan's Cabinet met in emergency session for several hours late Thursday
following Rahman's killing. The Kabul airport was sealed off Friday morning and
white-helmeted Interior Ministry police were stationed every few yards on the
roads leading to the main entrance.
''We lost a good man, an educated man,'' said a top aide to Rahman, Mohammed
Yakoub Nuristani. ''He wanted to help rebuild Afghanistan.''
''The interim administration is shocked, obviously, and very saddened by this
incident,'' said Foreign Ministry spokesman Omar Samad. ''We're looking into
the criminal actions that have taken place here.''
British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, who arrived Friday for talks with the
interim government, immediately conveyed his condolences to Foreign Minister
The fatal confrontation was sparked after Rahman went to the Kabul airport
Thursday afternoon for a flight to New Delhi, according to accounts from
government and Afghan airline officials. Hundreds of pilgrims, who'd been
stranded at the airport since early morning awaiting Saudi visas and transport
to Mecca, blocked Rahman's plane, airline and government officials said.
The mob stormed the plane when Rahman emerged to try to talk to the crowd, said
Abdul Wahab Nuristani, the deputy chief of a military division in eastern
Afghanistan. Rahman was seized, beaten and his body tossed to the tarmac below,
he said, citing witness accounts.
''This is so terrible, so illegal,'' he said.
Dozens of friends, family and government officials gathered at Rahman's Kabul
home as word spread of his death. The mourners listened quietly as a mullah
read verses from the Quran.
Rahman, 49, was trained as a medical doctor. He fled Afghanistan when the
Taliban took over and had been living in exile in New Delhi. In interviews
since taking over as aviation and tourism minister in the interim government,
he had spoken enthusiastically of his wish to make Afghanistan a tourist
Two men were detained for questioning in the minister's death, said Faraidoon,
an Interior Ministry spokesman who uses only one name.
Despite the killing, two pilgrimage flights left the airport at 2 a.m. and
another was to depart later Friday, airport officials said, speaking on
condition of anonymity.
Several pilgrims were also hurt during a clash with Rahman's bodyguards at the
airport Thursday. Also beaten in the fray were about 10 members of the staff of
Afghanistan's Ariana Airlines, including its president, said an Ariana employee
who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The employee, who was in the airport as tensions built throughout the day, said
would-be pilgrims grew angrier and angrier as delays dragged on while they
waited in the freezing terminal.
A contingent of British and French peacekeepers, stationed less than a
half-mile away in the military part of the airport, were apparently unaware
that the situation had flared out of control. Earlier, they had sent food and
blankets for the growing crowd.
The security force ''knew there was an ongoing incident, but it happened very
quickly,'' said British Capt. Graham Dunlop, a spokesman for the peacekeepers.
He said the civilian area of the airport was under the control of Afghan
''We were not involved,'' he said. ''It's not our jurisdiction.''
Dunlop said he did not know how many peacekeepers were on the airport grounds
at the time of the mob attack.
Mohammed Anif, a Kabul man who was waiting to see off his father on the
pilgrimage, saw the mob rushed the plane after a rumor ran through the crowd
that it was about to take off.
''They went running up the steps and inside the plane, and we saw struggles and
a body thrown out of the plane,'' he said. He said he could not tell from a
distance if it was Rahman's.
Some accounts, though, said that Rahman left the plane of his own accord to try
to talk to the crowd.
Before the plane was stormed, Anif said he heard people in the crowd talking
angrily about the minister using the plane for an official trip while they
waited for their own plane to Mecca for the hajj, or pilgrimage.
''They were saying that the hajj was the most important thing, and how could he
do this,'' Anif said. ''Some were saying they wanted to lie down in front of
the plane to keep it from taking off, and others said, 'No, let's stop it
The numbers of Afghan pilgrims wanting to embark on the pilgrimage had been
building up for the past several days, with backlog running into the thousands
Some would-be travelers had trouble obtaining the necessary Saudi visas, but
the main bottleneck appeared to be lack of flights and delays in issuing
tickets and other paperwork. Many pilgrims were illiterate and needed help
getting their documents in order.
Pilgrims, huh? Damn troublemakers. First Plymouth Rock and the Salem Witch
Trials, now this.
Peacekeepers, huh? There is no peace to be kept in that animal pen. I say trash
the place, destroy what we need to destroy, quarantine it, and leave. Same
policy for the rest of these cesspools.
Also, what does this say about the effectiveness of all the security measures
inside the U.S. if these gangs of incompetent third worlders can't control
their own aircraft (and the people in them) outside the U.S.? Fortunately their
things don't have enough range to get over here nonstop but it's not too hard
to imagine a scenario where a bunch of "pilgrims" takes over a plane and does a
9/11 with it.
Speaking of peacekeepers, the news stories that came out BEFORE that celebrated
soccer match are hilarious in retrospect. "Soccer? Effendi, I am theenking you
say "sock her!"
I loved the soccer match report. Peacekeepers win, 3-1. Probably by shooting
anybody within range of their goal. Let's see if those kinder, gentler
Urropeens are quite so eager to have a "goodwill" match in the future. These
guys are nearly as incompetent as the people in the pesthole whose peace
they're "keeping." (See also Balkans).
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - Where gallows once stood, there now are goalposts.
Where the Taliban once conducted public executions and amputations, a stadium
is prepared for a sporting event.
It is a sign of normalcy returning to Afghanistan, which will stage its first
international soccer game in seven years on Friday.
``The fact that there is now a football game in a place where there were once
executions is proof that the Taliban reign of terror is finally over,'' said
Lt. Col. Dietmar Jeserich of the German peacekeeping force. ``It's a good idea
to have this game now and show people that these times are over.''
Afghanistan was suspended from the International Olympic Committee in 1999...
A wise move I would say, in the light of recent events.
The game was organized by the British Ministry of Defense with the backing of
the English Football Association and the Premier League.
Well, that helps explain it. Those people couldn't organize their way into a
***house, on a slow night, with money falling out of their wallets.
Most of the players on the international side are British, but Italian, Danish,
French, German, Dutch, Norwegian and Spanish peacekeepers will also
And everybody's in charge. Beautiful. Just beautiful.
``They do not speak English, but football is a common language and we got along
well,'' McMenemy said after a training session with the Afghans.
Yeah, I gotcher common language right heah, ragheads...