The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), along with many members of the Afghani community, are pleased that the repressive, terrorist Taliban regime has been ousted from Kabul and that the opportunity for a representative democracy to come to power in Afghanistan is before us. We urge our administration and the international community to be vigilant in forming a government in Afghanistan in which all Afghanis are represented. We also urge our administration to introduce a Marshall-like plan that will help to secure a democratic and prospering Afghanistan, rather than repeat the mistake we made in 1989, when we hastily left Afghanistan after arming the mujahadeen fighters, leaving a breading ground for terror and extremism in the country.
In the effort to avoid this fate, we must express our grave concerns about the Northern Alliance and call for them to share power immediately. The Northern Alliance has been accused of a range of human rights abuses including rape, indiscriminate murder, and torture. Evidence of the Northern Alliance less than democratic practices include the widespread summary revenge executions of prisoners of war just in the past two days. Other atrocities include those reported by a former Northern Alliance fighter to journalist Robert Fisk, such as locking captives inside containers in the middle of the summer and deliberately asphyxiating them until they became blackened corpses, killing over 1,250.
Given the background of the Northern Alliance, we urgently call for a renewed commitment to a truly representative government in Afghanistan. The Northern Alliance should not be empowered to lead Afghanistan without the consent, via a democratic election and/or representative tribal council, of the people of Afghanistan.
MPAC also expresses its grave concern over the alleged intentional bombing of the Al Jazerra satellite station in Kabul at 1:30AM on Monday, in a move that is reminiscent of the infamous bombing of the independent RTS TV station in Belgrade. Bombing a satellite of an Arab television station acclaimed for its hard hitting and fair coverage in a climate of totally undemocratic, state-controlled media, sends a negative message to those for whom Al-Jazerra is the only credible source of news. We believe that this is not the time to send a message to the people of the Muslim world that our nation does not support their legitimate right to free speech. We condemn the bombing of Al-Jazerra and stand by its right broadcast according to democratic principles.