The most damning indictment of America’s 14-year mission in Afghanistan was published in The New York Times Sunday.
The Times revealed to the public the horror perpetuated by some of our most prominent Afghan allies: rampant child rape that goes by the name of “bacha bazi.” The name roughly translates into English as “boy play.”
According to the NYT, anti-Taliban warlords working with U.S. forces would bring young boys on coalition bases as sex slaves. Soldiers could hear the cries of the abuse on a nightly basis. Some soldiers even took action to let their supposed allies know that American fighters wouldn’t tolerate the rape of children.
For instance, a Green Beret captain strongly requested an Afghan commander free a 12-year-old boy the ally kept chained to his bed. After the commander laughed in the face of the Special Forces officer, the officer delivered a much-deserved beating to the sex predator with the aid of another Green Beret.
Both of the decorated soldiers were reprimanded for the beating and the captain was stripped of his command.
However, military commanders told troops and officers that they needed to overlook the rapes they were witnessing — because it was a part of the Afghan culture. Out of a concern for cultural sensitivity, hundreds of children were placed at the mercy of American-backed predators and any soldier who tried to stop it was punished.
Even from a strategic standpoint, this repulsive sensitivity appears insane. It angered villagers who witnessed the abduction of their children and made them more likely to support the Taliban.
When the Taliban ruled Afghanistan, “bacha bazi” was punishable by death. To family members who just saw a child carried off as a sex slave, the thought of Islamic militants bringing swift justice upon these predators is very likely more appealing than the U.S.-backed allies who revel in the vile sport.
Why would our leaders allow such sick behavior that goes against our core values to continue in American-run facilities? Why would we punish well-decorated military heroes who stood up to one of these unrepentant, bacha bazi scumbags?
It’s because our society has the tendency to look away from revolting acts in order to appear tolerant of other cultures.
Last year, the world was rocked by the revelations of an expansive child sex ring in the unassuming British town of Rotherham. At least 1,400 children were believed to have been victimized by a criminal gang comprised entirely of Pakistani men. Authorities had been alerted to the depravity long before 2014. But officials in Rotherham chose to ignore it because they didn’t want to look racist. (RELATED: The UK’s Political Establishment Is Still Failing Rape Victims)
In fact, the courageous social worker who desperately tried to get help for the young girls ensnared in the sex ring was punished for bringing it to the attention of her superiors. Her punishment: a mandatory cultural sensitivity course. (RELATED: UK Social Worker Given Diversity Training After Exposing Pakistani Sex Ring)
To reiterate, the leaders of Rotherham were more concerned with being called racists than saving the most vulnerable members of society from the clutches of its worst criminals.
Along with the brutalization of children, European countries are starting to have a awkward relationship with the practice of Islamic sharia law in their own lands. Many aspects of Islamic law are harmless and deal with personal disputes outside the normal jurisdiction of the law. But other aspects encourage “honor killings” — the practice of murdering a family member (often a daughter) to rectify a “shameful” act.
Europe currently has a major problem with honor killings, and some leaders are worried about handling the matter in a sensitive manner. Why a murder would be handled any differently due to a cultural subtext without any bearing on western law is asinine.
But that’s just the cost of prizing tolerance over good sense and strong values.
We in the West have to accept the fact that we can’t remake every corner of the globe in our own image. Many cultures are going to have practices and values that seem strange to us and might even disgust us. Trying to remold the whole world to embrace our values is a fool’s task.
However, that doesn’t mean we should accept these practices in our own countries or even on our own bases.
The West has its own culture. The West has its own values. The West has its own laws. There is no justification for allowing certain protected classes to force the westerns society to accept practices it deems barbaric and unlawful.
For make no mistake, the worst part of this sensitive mentality is when it allows these acts to occur right here in Western states.
America and Western Europe used to not act so permissive around barbaric customs.
When Britain colonized India, it outlawed the traditional cultural practice of throwing widows onto their husbands’ funeral pyres. The British rulers considered the practice so cruel that they could not abide by letting the Indians to continue on with it.
In response to the complaints of some Hindu priests that the colonizers were eradicating a cherished tradition, Charles James Napier, the British Army’s commander in chief in India during the 1840s, is said to have remarked: “Be it so. This burning of widows is your custom; prepare the funeral pile. But my nation has also a custom. When men burn women alive we hang them, and confiscate all their property. My carpenters shall therefore erect gibbets on which to hang all concerned when the widow is consumed. Let us all act according to national customs.”
Now in our age, our leaders would seem to be content with letting widows be thrown into the pyres in our own neighborhoods and punishing anyone who might criticize it.