Despair and hope in Afghanistan


Tragic news coming from Afghanistan. The irresponsible actions of Florida pastor sparked riots in that war-torn nation. The pastor made good on his promise from last year and burned a Koran March 20. He put the Koran on trial, found it guilty and set it on fire.

The latest reports state nine people are dead — including United Nations workers — and almost 100 injured. There are protests throughout one end of the nation to another…in northern Mazar-e Sharif, east-central Kabul, southern Kandahar and western Herat.

The Apostle Paul tells Christians how to live: “Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.” (Ephesians 5:2, NLT) Can’t see that in the pastor’s reckless actions.

Fortunately, soldiers with NATO’s International Security Assistance Force are exhibiting a better handling of Western/Islamic relations.

How?

They opened a mosque in the village of Tarok Kolache April 1. “The mosque is the first completed structure in a massive joint reconstruction effort by Tarok Kolache landowners and International Security Assistance Forces since the village, previously a Taliban stronghold, was destroyed October 2010, in an effort to rid it of insurgents,” stated an ISAF press release.

“Before Afghan and coalition forces cleared this area, farmers and residents were unable to get safely to their orchards and homes,” said Dr. Tooryalai Wesa, governor of Kandahar province, in the release. “Now the villagers and farmers feel safe and are eager to return to their homes and help rebuild their village.”

“This time last year, we were unable to even think about building a mosque in Tarok Kolache,” said Wesa in the release. “Now, thanks to the support, hard work, dedication and sacrifice of our security forces; governance, security and development are strong here.”

Well done, ISAF.

ISAF’s release and photos are at http://www.isaf.nato.int/article/isaf-releases/mosque-opening-symbolizes-hope-partnership-in-kandahar.html.

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