posted on July 17, 2007 11:04
In Argentina they’re celebrating the first snowfall in Buenos Aires since 1918.
At Cape Canaveral they’re getting ready to launch a new spacecraft to Mars.
And in Afghanistan a man just traded his sixteen-year-old daughter to settle a debt he owed for nine sheep. Which turns out not to be unusual. In Afghanistan fathers trade young girls like currency to settle debts all the time (AP, 7-10-07) .
There’s a lesson here that should cure us of ever again thinking we can spread democracy by snapping our fingers. We assumed we would read the Afghanistanis a copy of the Declaration of Independence and their eyes would light up and, voila, a new democracy is born. Instead, five years later, the tribesmen in Afghanistan are still selling their daughters and it looks like if we stay a hundred years we won’t turn them into democrats.
Next time, maybe, we’ll just get in, destroy Al-Qaeda, and get out.
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