Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

Afghans – The Casualty of Fundamentalism

The nascent democracy in Afghanistan has been hampered by the Taliban’s guerrilla-style attacks. The protected war has never been mitigated despite sacrifices made by Afghan government. The gory incidents continue. Gushes of blood lead to outpouring of grief. Bodies of men, women and children are riddled with bombs and bullets. People are killed without an iota of mercy on the grounds of their caste, color and creed. The life and dignity of mankind are trampled upon by terrorist groups which operate under radical ideologies. Seeking to protect the rights and dignity of individuals, Afghan soldiers are slayed in cold blood. We are only counting the fatalities and sending messages of condemnation to warring parties.  
The US government’s Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) says 807 troops from the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) died between January 1 and February 24. “Afghanistan remains in the grip of a deadly war. Casualties suffered by [ANDSF] in the fight against the Taliban and other insurgents continue to be shockingly high,” says the report.   
According to SIGAR, 6,785 Afghan soldiers and police officers were killed between January 1 and November 12, 2016, with another 11,777 wounded.
The SIGAR report also shows that civilian casualties in 2016 were the highest since the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan began recording them in 2009. That count found conflict-related civilian casualties in Afghanistan rose to 11,418 in 2016, including 3,498 killed and 7,920 wounded.
The April 19 attack on a military base outside the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif was considered highly shocking and outraged the national conscience. This attack, which killed and wounded hundreds of unarmed soldiers, is believed to be the deadliest one against Afghan soldiers that has ever happened.
The heavy casualties inflicted upon Afghan civilians and soldiers will fill one with a strong sense of disappointment. The post-Taliban democratic government could not stop the bleeding. The heart-wrenching stories repeat one after another. In other words, parents and children’s sufferings continue unabated. No panacea has been found out for Afghans’ chronic pain.
The radical ideology of fundamental groups is replete with boundless barbarity since the ideologue fighters spill the blood of mankind without a tinge of guilt. The Taliban and self-styled Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) know no boundaries for their cruelty. Their hands are red with the blood of innocent individuals.
To one’s unmitigated surprise, the radical groups show strong sensitivity to moral corruption but not to bloodshed. To think in the frame of Islamic sharia, the Holy Koran says, “Whoever kills a person, unless it be for manslaughter or for mischief in the land, it is as though he had killed all men. And whoever saves a life, it is as though he had saved the lives of all men” (Al-Maeda Verse no: 32). Hence, shedding the blood of an innocent person is similar to killing all mankind.
On the other hand, their sensitivity to moral turpitude is no more than an ostentatious act. For instance, both the groups are widely involved in moral corruptions. It has been reported constantly that the Taliban had raped their male students, this was revealed by their own students who were captured by Afghan soldiers. The retribution for this act is death in Islamic sharia. Similarly, the ISIL group has been raping women and children on the grounds of their sex, color and belief. Worst of all, this group declared Jihad-e-Nikah intending to color their moral corruptions with the brush of religion. This is a direct deviation from the right path and a flagrant violation of religious tenets. Such acts of fundamental groups are strong blow to religion. This is believed to be the very reason behind Islamophobia in western countries. It is self-explanatory that when a large number of fundamental groups operate under the aegis of religion, without having basic knowledge about it, this will lead to a disaster. To sum up, the ideology of fundamental groups is void not only of religious tenets but also of ethical code and humanity.
Indeed, democracy has sustained strong blows mainly from the insurgent groups. Counting fatalities and hearing or reading heart-wrenching stories every day in a democratic country seem ridiculous. The nonstop sufferings and heavy casualties in Afghanistan put democracy under serious question. It is believed that a democratic country does not necessarily mean to have a democratic constitution when political rehearsal goes against it. The country’s constitution hold people’s rights, liberty and dignity in respect – this is in ideal world but violated realistically. In addition to having a constitution based on democratic values, presidential and provincial elections, and parliament, protecting people’s fundamental rights i.e. rights to life, liberty and estate and natural dignity is far significant for a democratic society.
It is hoped the government will take high steps in safeguarding the rights and dignity of Afghans and reinforce the soldiers to retaliate the past casualties. It is further prayed that Afghan nation will no further be a casualty of radical mindsets and fundamental ideology of militant groups.