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Publishers, editors profit from Taliban poems

May 27, 2012

London’s C. Hurst & Co. Publishers Ltd. and co-editors Felix Kuehn, Faisal Devji, and Alex Strick van Linschoten are profiting from the publication of a new anthology of poetry by the Taliban.  Kuehn says the poems provide “a different window” to “understand the Taliban better,” van Linschoten says “the poetry shows that the Taliban are people just like we are,” and the co-editors say that the poems “provide a fascinating insight into the minds and hearts of these deeply emotional people.”

True, it’s worth examining all the statements of Taliban members, but their poems should not be embraced for showing the supposed humanity of the Taliban.  The Taliban are not people just like we are—they are people very far different from what we are.

Here’s one of the great “human” poems from a Taliban soldier, as read aloud during a BBC 4 broadcast:


The editors and publishers should do nothing less than donate 100 percent of the profits to British war veterans.

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