» Blogs » Theos Thoughts
Jewdyssee - This Aint Your Parents Old Yiddish Music

This German duo is out to prove that Yiddish music can be made modern and cool

Bedouin Soundclash Contest Interview

Shalom Life recently held a contest for a lucky fan to interview Bedouin Soundclash backstage before their concert in Toronto

Shalom Life Interviews Rap Star Mac Miller

Shalom Life recently had a chance to interview Mac Miller and talk about his new album, favorite Jewish food, and making a Hanukkah song with Drake.

EXCLUSIVE: Interview With California Alt-Pop Band, The Neighbourhood

The band discusses their upcoming tour, fondness for black & white, their love for California, and much more.

Amanda Bynes’ Hip Hop Producer, Waka Flocka Flame, Gives Her

The former Disney star plans to record a hip hop album

Smoking Weed Is Kosher, Says Israeli Rabbi

Efraim Zalmanovich notes that using weed to relieve pain is done in 'a kosher fashion'

Ethiopian Aliyah To Israel To End August 28th

New Ethiopians immigrants will be subject to same rules as all other potential immigrants to Israel

New Snack Rules In U.S. To Combat Obesity

U.S. Schools to remove junk food from vending machines and cafeterias

Amar'e Stoudemire To Buy Israeli Basketball Team

New York Knicks star with Jewish background is looking to acquire Hapoel Jerusalem

Take Responsibility for Your Own

The 19 year old sophomore sat on the exam table looking at the floor. A college student with obvious charm

The Stanford Prison Experiment at

In 1971, researchers set up a prison in the basement of Stanford University's Psychology Department. The idea was to

U.S. vs. Europe: Health Care

As I have tried to make abundantly clear the United States is the only country in the industrialized world that

Hands Off America

Alright, that does it.Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Americans have been willing to do their part for

Fat Returns After Liposuction ...

A study appeared in a journal titled “Obesity” which was reported by a group from the University of Colorado. In

What does Victory Look Like?

Sixty-five years ago today, World War II officially came to an end. On September 2, 1945, Japanese Foreign Minister

Hearts and Minds in Afghanistan

By Theo Caldwell
Published Tue Aug 31, 2010 in Blogs » Theos Thoughts

A young couple died a cruel death last week. According to BBC News: “A man and a woman who allegedly had an adulterous affair have been stoned and killed in the northern Afghan province of Kunduz.”

The pair, both in their 20’s, were hauled into a crowded marketplace and murdered. The woman, named Sadiqa, was brought out first. Taliban thugs threw rocks at her for half an hour, at which time the man, named Qayum, was pulled into the bazaar to suffer the same fate.

Apparently, the couple had run away together. Sadiqa had been betrothed to someone else, while Qayum was already married. This dreadful story conjures a number of thoughts.

First, there is the sheer horror of the scene. Consider, if you can, what it would be like for you and the person you love most to be in such a circumstance. Your own torturous death is compounded by the inability to protect someone you adore.

Next, there is the frequency with which Taliban forces are inflicting brutality in areas of Afghanistan that fall under their control. I wrote recently of Aisha, an 18-year-old girl whose nose and ears were cut off on the order of Taliban authorities for the crime of running away from her husband. There are reports that the Taliban flogged and killed a pregnant widow in the western province of Badghis this month.

In early August, ten medical aid workers were lined up and shot, one at a time, by Taliban terrorists in the northern province of Badakhshan. The chief crime for which these noble souls were tried and executed on the spot was, “preaching Christianity.”

Writer P.J. O’Rourke, having just returned from Afghanistan, quotes a female MP who says Taliban forces make a simple demand of villagers they subjugate: “Son or money.”

The reaction of Afghanistan’s government to the stoning deaths of Sadiqa and Qayum is disconcerting. Waheed Omar, a spokesman for Afghan President Hamid Karzai, is quoted as saying, "Even in Islam this [stoning] has to be done through proper judicial systems.”

While Omar suggests the government would condemn the incident, his comments imply that their chief objection would be that the Taliban did not complete Form Z-914B Rock-Hurling Requisition in triplicate before proceeding.

This raises the much larger concern of the Karzai government in general. Western forces are forever picking the wrong allies in regions they don’t understand, then clinging to them like grim death.

Finally, one wonders about the 150 or so people in that marketplace who watched as Sadiqa and Qayum were slowly killed. Those are 150 of the “hearts and minds” we hear so much about. Reports are that the Taliban did the actual stoning (they finished Qayum off with bullets), while villagers were made to observe and contemplate the fate of those who behave in “un-Islamic” ways.

Those villagers have seen the face of evil. And as human beings, they must want something better for themselves and their families. One has to think that in this battle for hearts and minds, forces of freedom and dignity can outdo the stone-throwers, nose-cutters and son-snatchers.

For the sake of those people – and for Sadiqa and Qayum and for every person in Afghanistan who does not share our good fortune – let us show them a better way.


Theo Caldwell is the author of Finn the half-Great.
Theo Caldwell


Theo Caldwell, B.A., M.Sc., is President of Caldwell Asset Management Inc., an author and columnist, and an investment advisor in the United States and Canada.
Related articles:
0 times

Share This Story With Your Friends!

Your Name:

Friend's Name:


Friend's E-Mail:

(This information will not be displayed publicly)

Optional Message: