COMMENTARY: Lindh Wants More Freedom

Posted: April 22, 2013 at 5 a.m.

Sulayman al-Faris wants to pray five times a day with his Muslim brothers. You may remember him, although not by his preferred name. He was originally known as John Walker Lindh, the American man who traveled to Afghanistan to help the al-Qaeda-backed Taliban fight against the Afghan Northern Alliance. He was captured during the U.S. invasion in 2001 and took part in a violent Taliban prisoner revolt in which several hundred other prisoners died and an American CIA officer was killed. Lindh has proven over and over that he’s a traitor to his country.

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Opinion, Pages 5 on 04/22/2013

By all means, let's find someone to demonize and direct the required 3 minutes of hate against.
The story of John Walker Lindh is a little more complex than depicted here.
He converted to Islam when he was 16 and went to Yemen in 1998 to study Arabic for 10 months. In May 2001 he went to Afghanistan to aid the Taliban against the Northern Alliance.
"His parents said that he was moved by stories of atrocities allegedly perpetrated by the Northern Alliance army against civilians...American soldiers were not deployed in Afghanistan at the time he joined the Taliban government forces.".
His lawyer, Tony West said ""One of the first things he told Army interrogators when they questioned him on December 3 of last year was that after 9/11 happened, he wanted to leave the front lines but couldn't for fear of his life. John never wanted to be in a position where he was opposing the United States (and never thought he would be), and in fact he never opposed any American military."

Posted by: Coralie

April 22, 2013 at 12:59 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

RAWA or the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan charges that the Northern Alliance is just as fundamentalist and dangerous as the Taliban. They say that "the current government led by President Hamid Karzai lacks support in most areas of Afghanistan, and that fundamentalists are enforcing laws unfairly treating women as they were under the Taliban."

Posted by: Coralie

April 22, 2013 at 1:10 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Regarding the differences between Taliban and al qaeda:
Although this is an anonymous source, 'Wiseguy' gives a very clear, brief explanation of recent Afghanistan history that accords with what I know from other sources.

Posted by: Coralie

April 22, 2013 at 1:19 p.m. ( | suggest removal )