The Taliban “can perhaps be admired for their conviction to their faith and their sense of loyalty to each other”, the new bishop for the Armed Forces has said.
In an interview with The Daily Telegraph The Rt Rev Stephen Venner argued against demonising the Taliban and said the attitude taken towards them had been “too simplistic”.
The Church of England bishop was recently commissioned in his new role by Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury.
He told the newspaper:
“We’ve been too simplistic in our attitude towards the Taliban.
“There’s a large number of things that the Taliban say and stand for which none of us in the West could approve, but simply to say therefore that everything they do is bad is not helping the situation.
“The Taliban can perhaps be admired for their conviction to their faith and their sense of loyalty to each other.”
The bishop said he admired the sacrifices made by the British forces fighting in Afghanistan and he said some of the Taliban’s methods were not honourable or acceptable.
Bishop Venner said all the people of Afghanistan, including the Taliban, needed to be involved in a solution to the country’s problems.
The Akh wonders how long it will be before the pro war British hawks get their claws into the Bishop and severely rebuke him for his comments and force him to make an apology.
Within moments of this message being aired, you could almost sense that their would be a severe backlash from the pro war British Hawks, any narrative that dares to oppose or step out of line of the simplistic official narrative of “Good V Evil” will be severely rebuked.
As the bishop was seen to be grovelling as he backtracked over his previous message with the usual “It was taken out of context” and “I’m not trying to support the Taliban, what they are doing is evil.” as he said to the BBC.
At a time when British Muslims are pressurised to distance themselves from their fellow Muslims around the world who fight against invading western forces, often with the tried and tested formulae of labelling any resistance to imperialist schemes as being a distorted and “extreme” version of Islam, one which all “moderate” British Muslim groups are forced to condemn.
Yet Tony Bliar will openly admit that he lied and misled the British people to launch illegal wars and there is no widespread condemnation for his actions, his actions will never be viewed as hateful or extreme.