Kinder, gentler minders
August 12, 2002 11:56 AM   Subscribe

Kinder, gentler minders in Kabul? President Hamid Karzai has re-opened the Department of the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice. Department head Mohammad Wazir Razi Kabuli promises no beatings or jailings for violating Islamic tenets, as was common under the Taliban Ministry of Virtue and Vice. Instead, "propaganda" will be used influence the people of Afghanistan. However, when asked what would happen if, for example, a woman was caught wearing makeup in public, Kabuli said "It's too early to talk about that."
posted by mr_crash_davis (11 comments total)
although i am usually a pacifist, i must say that i have this fantasy about a bunch of women in burqas with machine guns taking over the country and it gives me a most pleasant thrill (think grannies attacking in monty python). and they could never be identified. you know, because they have no identity.
posted by witchstone at 12:06 PM on August 12, 2002

nice to see that Afghanistan is changing and that we didn't just overthrow the Taliban to get an oil pipeline and a government to be our buddies.

posted by RobbieFal at 12:41 PM on August 12, 2002

Witchstone, that was part of the strategy of RAWA, insofar as the women could covertly film the atrocities which went on inside of their country. No identity = perfect cover.
posted by Modem Ovary at 12:57 PM on August 12, 2002

well, the name's got pretty bad conotations granted, but so did Germany's foreign office after Hitler was defeated. The Karzai administration is not the Taliban, and the promotion of virtue and prevention of vice can take many forms. too early to call.
posted by gravelshoes at 1:07 PM on August 12, 2002

My question is, whose version of Islam are they going to adopt? Because if they went by what this devout Muslim woman has to say, I don't think the department would exist.
posted by ligeia at 1:28 PM on August 12, 2002

You think Kabul is bad? Try Seattle.

ligeia: the biggest worry, in my opinion, is if they re-institute Sha'ria, strict Islamic civil law with severe penalties for those who break it.
posted by insomnyuk at 1:56 PM on August 12, 2002

witchstone: Check out this comic from Electric Sheep; I think it will give you pleasure.
posted by languagehat at 2:02 PM on August 12, 2002

excellent link, language hat! thank you. i'm getting my burqa-violence swerve on.
posted by witchstone at 2:33 PM on August 12, 2002

RAWA, one way or another, represent a minority of Afghan women. The irony we have to deal with is that we may bring democracy to Afghanistan, and they may vote away things we consider essential human rights.

RobbieFal: Nice to see the new blood is keeping up the MeFi tradition of snide trolling.
posted by dhartung at 2:54 PM on August 12, 2002

Quick, hide the statues!
posted by rushmc at 4:55 PM on August 12, 2002

So are they going to be reopening the ministry of truth?
posted by Keyser Soze at 7:56 PM on August 12, 2002

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