I think, in a post-9/11 era, folks would do well to check out Lawrence Wright's The Looming Tower. The beauty of the book is that it clearly shows the roots of Al'Quaeda in both religious fundamentalism, and America's support of a brutal Egyptian dictatorship. And yet it never skimps in assessing the ruthless evil that animates Ayman Al'Zawari and Osama Bin Laden. Likewise, it critiques our endorsement of the Mujaheddin in Afghanistan, while at the same laying bare the thuggism of the Taliban. Check out the book. It's a gripping read.
A lot of us would do well to learn from that, to understand that one can condemn Dick Cheney and condemn the Taliban. And in case we're wondering why these nut jobs should be condemned I offer the following--a man tortured on suspicion of being gay, and 17-year old girl tortured for the following...
One account said she had stepped out of her house without being escorted by a male family member, according to Samar Minallah, a rights activist. Ms. Minallah said she distributed the video to local news outlets after it was sent to her by someone from Swat three days ago.
Another account said a local Taliban commander had falsely accused the teenager of violating Islamic law after she refused to accept his marriage proposal.
The local authorities said that punishment was unacceptable--because it was conducted in public. Here's the tape. Watch it if you like. It could just be more media lies.