Incubators of Evil
Written in summer 2002
The trouble with President Bush’s phrase “axis of evil” is not its bluntness or simplicity, but short-term inaccuracy and long-term irrelevance. North Korea is a vestige of the Cold War on track for the dustbin of history, Iran is run by crazy mullahs who will eventually be eased out (or thrown out) by a restive young population bent on reform, and Saddam Hussein, while a threat, is weaker than in 1991; most importantly, none of these had anything to do with 9/11. It’s time to hit the nail on the head: the evil that flourished in Afghanistan and struck us on 9/11 was incubated in Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. The intimate nexus between al-Qaeda and Pakistan & Saudi Arabia is illuminated by their behavior before and after 9/11. Our so-called “friends” were the only allies of the Taliban prior to 9/11, because they created the Taliban. The foot-soldiers of the Taliban and al-Qaeda were trained in Pakistani madrassahs financed by Saudi Arabia. Al-Qaeda gained most of its funding from Saudi “charities” and has close connections with the ISI, Pakistan’s intelligence service. Pakistan, with policies directed by former ISI chief Hamid Gul and former Interior Minister, Naserullah Babur, used Afghanistan for years as a terrorist university with camps melded with al-Qaeda to export terrorists to Kashmir, where they have tried to Talibanise Kashmir (e.g., by throwing acid on women who don’t wear the veil) and, in ironic counterpoint to Kosovo or Bosnia, perpetrated ethnic cleansing, not of Muslims, but of Hindus, driving out 350,000. Pakistan supplied the Taliban weapons even after US bombing began in October, airlifted hundreds of fighters (who knows how many al-Qaeda) out of Kunduz, and promoted inclusion of “moderate Taliban” (a la moderate Nazis) in Afghanistan’s government. There are reports from the BBC that the ISI provided dialysis, shelter, and escape to bin Laden. It is also reported that Gen. Mahmud Ahmad, the ISI chief on 9/11, directed Omar Sheikh (prime suspect in the beheading of Daniel Pearl and hosted by Pakistan for years after his release by India after the Indian Airlines hijacking) to wire $100,000 to Mohammed Atta in the weeks before Sept. 11. Senior Taliban rest comfortably in Pakistan, even giving interviews to newspapers. Gen. Musharraf, in addition to recently releasing many of the terrorists he “rounded-up” (just in time for Kashmir’s spring thaw), stated that Pearl got “over-intrusive”, begging the question, what was Pearl killed to protect?Saudi Arabia has bankrolled a world-wide network of madrassahs and mosques to promote Wahhabism, their hateful brand of Islam. Saudi schools in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and even the US, teach high school students that “Judgment Day will not come until Muslims will fight the Jews, and Muslims will kill all the Jews”, and that “whoever is kufr [non-Muslim] it is okay to hurt and steal from”, while Saudi mosques in the West have held AK-47 training courses and hosted the 9/11 terrorists. Fatwas by Saudi clerics in addition to declaring “holy war against infidels” have said that suicide attacks are “the most noble rung a Muslim can attain” and specifically mention “crashing your plane into an important location that will cause your enemy to suffer colossal losses.” Since 9/11, the Saudis have not cooperated in the investigation or the war and continue to refuse to provide passenger manifests of airplanes bound for the US. The “personality” of these countries explains their behavior. Pakistan’s sharia laws state that a woman pressing rape charges must produce 4 “upstanding” male witnesses, otherwise she can be jailed for adultery (human rights organizations reports thousands of women in Pakistani jails on such charges), and religious minorities including the Shiite and Ahmadiya sects of Muslims are persecuted. Pakistan’s military has ruled the country for most of its history, and is responsible for one of the greatest genocides since WWII: within 8 months in 1971, in a horror belying Pakistan’s pretense of Islamic fraternity, the Pakistani military killed 800,000 East Pakistanis; 10 million refugees fled to India (quadruple the Taliban’s rate of murder & refugees!). When Pakistan was “democratic”, minorities were not allowed the vote in general elections. Saudi Arabia prohibits freedom of religion, women from driving, continues beheading & stoning, and institutionalizes gender apartheid, to the point where women need the permission of male relatives to have surgery. Saudi royal oil largess has deflected anger at corruption & unemployment onto the West while relieving Pakistan of the burden of public education with madrassahs, allowing it to spend more on its military. This March, official Saudi newspapers have stated that Jews drink human blood for Purim and Passover, and Saudi religious police beat girls fleeing their burning school for not wearing the veil, forcing them back inside, where 15 died. The cancer of venom manifest on 9/11 arose from the incubators of evil known as Pakistan’s military-mullah complex and Saudi Arabia’s checkbook terrorists; it will continue to metastasize unless we excise their medieval murderousness and dismantle the axis that incubates evil.