TALIBAN PROPAGANDA WATCH: New, Old Messages in Latest Statement

Well, the latest summit of the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has come and gone with, reportedly, not much progress to report.

Nonetheless, a statement has been posted to the English-language Taiban web page (link to Voice of Jihad here, link to PDF at non-terrorist page here) asking the Asian neighbours for help:

The invaders  have turned our country into an inferno where the oppressed Afghans have been burning. Therefore, we urge the participants of the Shanghai Summit to render   assistance in the work of liberation of people and countries of the region from the claws of the colonialists and take a decisive stand regarding the West’s invasion of Afghanistan.

and to, again, reassure them the Taliban has no territorial ambitions outside Afghanistan:

We remind the participants of the Shanhai (sic.) Forum to be aware of being  swayed   by  the black propaganda launched against us by colonialism. We do not have any intention to harm our neighboring countries but we want to gain independence of our country which is our natural right and establish an Islamic system as a panacea for all our economic and social problems, for which, we have been offering tremendous sacrifices unremittingly.  The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan as per its peaceful policy wants to have constructive interactions with Shanghai forum member countries for a permanent stability and economic development in the region.

The latter message was also shared in a post-Ramadan statement issued by the Taliban as well (links to non-terrorist site), but here’s some other highlight messages from the latest statement.

“It’s ISAF’s fault schools are closed.”

Our parent are not able to send their children to schools with a peace of mind, fearing they might be killed because the invaders have frequently  shelled seminaries and schools under the excuse of being training centers of  terrorists.

“Look at how they shoot at our innocent folks not stopping for security cordons, or for no reason at all!”

Our common public passengers fear they may get stuck between  military convoys of the invaders and  lose life. Many a time, it has happened that the so-called international security forces have run over common people’s vehicles. Afterward, they  claimed that the passengers had not  paid attention to their signals. In order word, they consider passengers’ not heeding to their signal  a justification to kill  them …. They think every Afghan, child or a mature person, male or female is going to attack them by blowing up him or herself. So they fear from every rock and every bush of Afghanistan, considering them to be their enemy, thinking, Taliban might have planted a landmine under it. They open fire at every direction.

“ISAF won’t even let us run our own businesses – they’ll even burn them down if they’re doing well.”

Our businessmen are grappling with various problems in their daily commercial activities, being  not able to perform their normal business routine.  They fear, their  goods may be damaged by  foreign troops while transporting them from one province to another. They also fear that some officials in uniform will loot their commodity.  A few days ago,  foreign forces set fire to 2,000 shops in Gandum Raiz bazaar, Zamindawar area, Kajaki district, Helmand province, burning them to ashes.

This information is also in an 6 Oct 09 statement (second item; links to non-terrorist site) about an alleged fire in a bazaar in Helmand. My guess – there may have been a fire, but the Taliban is trying to blame NATO for it.

The invaders  have turned our country into an inferno where the oppressed Afghans have been burning. Therefore, we urge the participants of the Shanghai Summit to render   assistance in the work of liberation of people and countries of the region from the claws of the colonialists and take a decisive stand regarding the West’s invasion of Afghanistan.

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