Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Understanding Afghanistan

First off let me enthusiastically recommend P.J. O'Rourke's book Holidays in Hell. Read this and many things about many strange places will become much clearer.

Go here for his take on Afghanistan. He's been there before, and points out that the entire country is based on shopping. Sort of. The major land trade routes between Europe, China, and India cross there, and the Afghans feel this rates them at least a percentage of the action. That said, he now draws paralells:
What if some friendly, well-meaning, but very foreign power, with incomprehensible lingo and outrageous clothes, were to arrive on our shores to set things right? What if it were Highland Scots? There they go marching around wearing skirts and purses and ugly plaids, playing their hideous bagpipe music, handing out haggis to our kiddies and offending our sensibilities with a lack of BVDs under their kilts. Maybe they do cut taxes, lower the federal deficit, eliminate the Department of Health and Human Services, and the EPA, give people jobs at their tartan factories and launch a manhunt for Harry Reid and the UC Berkeley faculty. We still wouldn’t like them.
No one likes it when some furreners show up and try to run your country, but if they threw in some public hangings to emphasize the above agenda, I might be inclined not to complain too loudly

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