Just when you thought the world was safe for democracy, the Misunderstanders of Islam are back on the air in Afghanistan. From Reuters, with thanks to Teri:
KANDAHAR, Afghanistan – Afghanistan’s Taliban guerrillas launched a clandestine radio station on Monday, broadcasting anti-government commentaries and Islamic hymns from a mobile transmitter.
Called “Shariat Shagh,” or Voice of Shariat, after the station the Taliban ran while in power, the broadcast can be heard in five southern provinces, including the former regime’s old power base of Kandahar.
“We launched the broadcast today through a mobile facility,” said Taliban spokesman Abdul Latif Hakimi.
“It goes on the air between six and seven o’clock in the mornings and same time in the evenings,” he said by telephone from an undisclosed location.
Hakimi said the Taliban, fighting an insurgency in the south and east of the country since they were driven from power in late 2001, needed their own voice because the world’s media were pro-American.
Many Afghans listen to the BBC and Voice of America which broadcast in the country’s two main languages, Pashto and Dari. In addition to government-run radio, numerous small, private stations have sprung up, many funded by aid donors.
As well as Islamic hymns and anti-government commentaries, the Taliban station also criticized U.S. and other foreign troops operating in Afghanistan since the Taliban were ousted.
Asked what the Taliban would do if U.S. forces detected and destroyed their transmitter, Hakimi said they would set up another…
Of course. As far as they’re concerned this is a war that has been going on for 1,400 years. They’re not going to give up easily. This is clear from even the most cursory understanding of the motives and goals — although the learned analysts discount the importance of knowing anything about all that.