Independent Digital (UK) Ltd
Robert Fisk: Just who are our allies in Afghanistan?
October 3, 2001


> The Alliance have not murdered 7,000 innocent civilians in the United States. 
> They have done their massacres on their home turf.

So, fellow malcontents, are you surprised? The "Northern Alliance" turns
out to be as big a gang of thugs and murderers as the evil, nazi
Taliban. Hey, when it comes to choosing surrogates, why break a perfect
record? Our freedom-fighting friends include:

> ...  Abdul Rashid Dustum, one of the most powerful Alliance gangsters,
> whose men looted and raped their way through the suburbs of Kabul in the
> Nineties. They chose girls for forced marriages, murdered their families, all
> under the eyes of Masood. Dustum had a habit of changing sides, joining the
> Taliban for bribes and indulging in massacres alongside the Wahhabi
> gangsters who formed the government of Afghanistan, then returning to the
> Alliance weeks later.
> Then there's Rasoul Sayaf, a Pashtun who originally ran the "Islamic Union
> for the Freedom of Afghanistan", but whose gunmen tortured Shia families and
> used their women as sex slaves in a series of human rights abuses between
> 1992 and 1996. Sure, he's just one of 15 leaders in the Alliance, but the
> terrified people of Kabul are chilled to the bone at the thought that these
> criminals are to be among America's new foot-soldiers.

Of course, these guys may turn out to be bad again, if it suits those playing
the United State's international chess game or they may be betrayed more subtly:

> I have a dark premonition about all this. The "Northern Alliance" will work
> for us. They'll die for us. And, while they're doing that, we'll try to split 
> the Taliban and cut a deal with their less murderous cronies, offering them a 
> seat in a future government alongside their Alliance enemies. The other 
> Taliban -- the guys who won't take the Queen's shilling or Mr Bush's dollar 
> -- will snipe at our men from the mountainside and shoot at our jets and 
> threaten more attacks on the West, with or without bin Laden.

Robert Fisk is one of the most experienced correspondents for this area
of the world. This is an old article, but, with the Northern Alliance
preparing to take Kabul, it's just as timely today as it was five weeks

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