RUSH: <a target=new href=”http://www.hometownlocator.com/City/Wellersburg-Pennsylvania.cfm”>Wellersburg, Pennsylvania</a>. Dave, welcome to the program. Great to have you with us, sir.
CALLER: Alpha-omega dittos, Rush. Been with you from the beginning. We’ll be listening to you at the end.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: My pleasure. Hey, I wanted to know what’s your take on the economy in Afghanistan? How are things shaping up? You know, is a strong economy taking root over there over there?
RUSH: Well, not yet. I mean, this is the thing about Afghanistan. When you go over there with the American experience as your comparison point, you look at it and say, “This is not possible.” I looked at it, and said, “This is not possible.” Folks, this is like plugging it into the wall. I mean, this is where we are. It’s that basic what has to happen. These people have not
Now, if you’re an international investor. Let’s say you want to put in a hotel. Let’s say you want to build a series of hotels there or whatever business. You’re not going to do it until there’s a rule of law where you’re going to be protected and defended against any number of crimes that might occur or cheating, whatever. You’re just not going to find people putting money in. But India has just agreed to fund a number of projects. Karzai, when I had met with him, he had just gotten back from two days in India where he had gotten an agreement. India wants to run a natural gas line through country, but they’re not going to do it until there’s a rule of law in there where it’s protected, where if people vandalize it, that there are penalties and captures and so forth, and that there’s a system to prevent this from happening. They need a police force. Police force is being trained, but it’s very small. One of their big problems is that it’s sort of Colombia. There’s a huge drug trade with opium, the poppy. They’ve got poppy fields over there, and one of the conditions the United States has set forth with President Karzai is, “Our military is not into crop eradication and we’re not going to do that. Our military doesn’t do that; you’re going to need to have a trained domestic police force that can handle that. We’ll help you, but we’re not getting involved in domestic political or legal affairs like this. We’ll do what we can to help you in development,” and Karzai understands this because a number of other people are saying:
That country was the staging and training ground for the people that blew up the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on 9/11, Al-Qaeda and the Taliban, and as I mentioned in the first hour: “If you look at Osama bin Laden’s history, he always went to countries that were stateless, that were lawless and basically took over. There was nobody that was going to do anything to him first in Somalia, then to Sudan, then to Afghanistan.” Well, you can’t have that. After 9/11, it just makes no sense whatsoever to allow such circumstances to continue. But our belief is you don’t have governments by installing puppets who are going to ramrod policies down the people of the country’s faces and make them do this. You establish a government by having the people of the country do it. Hence you have elections. Hence you sponsor and foster freedom. You foster a free market economy that the people of the country create by virtue of their own commerce, not by infusions of cash from the US foreign aid budget. There’s not enough money to do it that way and we’ve proven with our own welfare state that it doesn’t work. You just can’t give people money and create prosperity. All you get is dependence and corruption. So the point here is to develop the country, bring it into the 21st Century with at the same time a free people as the engine of it. But for that to happen, there are certain basics that need to be explained and taught. I was told a story while there one night at dinner. Does the name (Grand Ayatollah Ali al-) Sistani [ news | bio | website ] mean anything to you? Sistani is a Shi’a leader in Iraq. He’s a Shi’a leader, and he is pro-American.
He’s one of the assets that we have. He’s not officially aligned, but he wields a considerable amount of influence, and he was being lobbied by the US. When the Iraqi constitution is finally ratified, he was being lobbied by the US to support the notion that it must be ratified by a three-fourths vote, not just a simple majority — and he didn’t understand this, didn’t understand why. “Why should we go to that?” It was explained to him by a very pro-American friend of his from Oman. He said, “You have to do it that way so that there’s no
He didn’t know. In that part of the world they don’t know who Thomas Jefferson is. They don’t have these basics that we’re taught and grow up with. It’s not part of their experience. So as I was told, Sistani told his friend from Oman, “All right, let me look at this,” and two weeks later he came out he came out and supported the notion of a three-fourths vote to ratify the Iraqi constitution when that day comes. He had been persuaded because he had done some research into American history. The point of this is, you go to certain circles in that part of the world where they understand that they have been living in squalor and tyranny and oppression and a Fourteenth to Fifteenth Century manner, they want out of it and they really do look to this country as the example of how. You don’t hear about them much. Have you heard this Sistani story reported? Of course you haven’t. There are many other such stories that I heard during the course of the trip. You know, we are a far more influential nation in that part of the world than you would know by simply reading the US media, and we are far more respected than you would know, particularly by those who are aligned with us and want our help.
They’ve gone to the trouble to understand why we are the way we are, and they understand that we are not