Tuesday, August 28, 2007
The agreement announced today in which South Korea agreed to withdraw its 3,000 troops from Afghanistan by the end of the year and discourage South Korean missionaries in exchange for the release of hostages held by the Taliban is weird. Sure, it would be great if the 19 surviving hostages, who have been held for 41 days, are actually going to be released. Two of the 23 Christian missionaries had already been killed and two released. But South Korea had already announced its intention to withdraw its troops by the end of year. Could it be that the Taliban staged this horrific kidnapping, killed several hostages and exacerbated the West's emnity for absolutely nothing? More likely, some money or other valuable considerations were promised and will be paid, proving once more that the American coalition is fragile and uncommitted, despite the sacrifice of thousands of soldiers. This will only prolong the war and the suffering of the Aghani people, whose country has been the industrialized nations' pinata for all these years. I hope the president can explain how this deal is a good thing in the big picture.