The problem is I think it might actually work.
According to Newsweek, a senior Taliban official, Abdul Qahar Balkhi, vowed to be more woke and that includes tackling the issue of climate change:
“We hope not only to be recognized by regional countries,” Balkhi said, “but the entire world at large as the legitimate representative government of the people of Afghanistan who have gained their right of self-determination from a foreign occupation with the backing and support of an entire nation after a prolonged struggle and immense sacrifices despite all odds being stacked against our people.”
And he argued that such a move would be to the benefit of not only Afghanistan but nations across the globe.
“We believe the world has a unique opportunity of rapprochement and coming together to tackle the challenges not only facing us but the entire humanity,” Balkhi added, “and these challenges ranging from world security and climate change need the collective efforts of all, and cannot be achieved if we exclude or ignore an entire people who have been devastated by imposed wars for the past four decades.”
Go forth with blessings from St. Greta.
Thing is, it’s easy for the Taliban to make these promises seeing as how their goal is to bring the Taliban all the way back to the medieval age in terms of technology. However, I sincerely doubt that they mean it. Senior Taliban officials are as corrupt as many other dictators are, and will deny their people comforts they themselves enjoy. I would expect nothing less.
But if we’re cutting to the reality of the situation, let’s be very clear about why they’re making this announcement. They know that if they say things like this, they’ll earn sympathy points from the west’s mainstream media sources. If they do, they know the media will fight PR battles for them against people who know them to be a horrific terrorist group bent on subjugation and murder.
The power of the mainstream media is that they can begin and end wars, and not enough people realize that. Controlling the platform where people get their news is also controlling the hearts and minds of those who view it.
As an example, the antiwar sentiment that grew throughout America was brought about in large part because of the American mainstream media’s consistent denouncement of the war. It was so important to the North Vietnamese that Colonel Bui Tin told the Wall Street Journal in 1995 that it was practically a part of their war strategy:
It was essential to our strategy. Support for the war from our rear was completely secure while the American rear was vulnerable. Every day our leadership would listen to world news over the radio at 9 a.m. to follow the growth of the American antiwar movement. Visits to Hanoi by people like Jane Fonda and former Attorney General Ramsey Clark and ministers gave us confidence that we should hold on in the face of battlefield reverses. We were elated when Jane Fonda, wearing a red Vietnamese dress, said at a press conference that she was ashamed of American actions in the war and that she would struggle along with us.
Those people represented the conscience of America. The conscience of America was part of its war-making capability, and we were turning that power in our favor. America lost because of its democracy; through dissent and protest it lost the ability to mobilize a will to win.
The Taliban seem to know exactly what buttons to push in order to please the media, and if the media is pleased then they know a good majority of Americans can be convinced that the Taliban aren’t so bad after all. Sadly, they’re not wrong. The left, and those who pay attention to mainstream media sources, are perfectly willing to give terrorists a pass if mainstream media figures are.
Case in point, feelings were generated for Boston Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev when Rolling Stone magazine put him on the cover, using a picture that made it look like an issue of Tiger Beat. While a good deal of outrage came about because of it, too many online began expressing affection and sympathy for him. Had the media played into the sympathy angle more than it did, you can bet Tsarnaev would have been looked at as a hero by many despite having killed innocent Bostonians. Luckily, the rest of the media wasn’t stupid enough to play around with that at the time.
The Taliban will have a much easier time with it. They aren’t bombing our backyards (yet) so with their presence so far removed and the populace not aware of their day-to-day, they can make statements and present a different view of themselves through selective video and pictures. They’ll harp on about the importance of climate change while they slaughter, trumpet women’s rights while they rape and sell them into sex slavery, and who knows what else?
And the media will probably report about it with increased fondness and the gullible will follow along as they always do.
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