Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
x Turn on thread page Beta
    • Thread Starter

    Staffan de Mistura, chief UN envoy to Afghanistan, has shown a truly disgusting side of himself in speaking on the recent unrest in Afghanistan. Worse still, I don't see any media outlets reporting this as the despicable attitude it is:

    The UN's chief envoy to Afghanistan, Staffan de Mistura, blamed Friday's violence in the northern city of Mazar-e Sharif on the Florida pastor who burnt the Koran on 20 March.

    "I don't think we should be blaming any Afghan," Mr de Mistura said. "We should be blaming the person who produced the news - the one who burned the Koran. Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from offending culture, religion, traditions."

    Here we have someone who has burned a single book (a very important book to many people, but ultimately just paper and ink), blamed for the actions of murderers, people who took innocent human lives in a frenzy of savage rage. "I don't think we should be blaming any Afghan"? Total bull. However valued the Koran is in the eyes of those muslims, it simply does not justify taking multiple lives, no doubt valued dearly by their families and friends. Even suspending the free expression issue of burning a Koran, what this man has said is evil. It calls into question the humanity of a person in a humanitarian position. Additionally, it's also completely at odds with statements by othe UN figures such as Ban Ki-Moon: "an outrageous and cowardly attack against UN staff, which cannot be justified under any circumstances and I condemn it in the strongest possible terms." Thankfully de Mistura's attitude isn't the official position of the UN.

    Alongside this outright disrespect for human life, innocent human life, is a completely facist distortion of basic freedoms:

    Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from offending [sic - I think he means 'to offend'] culture, religion, traditions.
    Actually, yes it does. In fact, that is precisely the what free speech is about. The reversal of this quote is pretty much a perfect definition of free speech, he is essentially saying it should be a crime to upset people. All the while holding the double standard of prioritising muslim feelings over Western values; an attack on free speech is an attack on a key tenet of Western society, and we should all be very pissed off. By his definition of free speech, Stalin was a great supporter of it. So is Kim Jong-Il and Gadaffi - I'm sure they're all for free speech so long as they like it, or have no major objection. The fact is that believing in freedom of expression means accepting expression of views you hate - otherwise you do not support freedom of expression. It's that simple.

    I'd also like to clarify that I do not support Pastor Wayne Sapp's burning of a Koran. It's ironic that had he put the Bible to the same mock trial, it would have a far better case for "crimes against humanity" than the (comparitively) peaceful Koran. Not being a muslim I have no emotional attachment to the Koran, but it would be a waste of kerosene to burn it.
Submit reply
Turn on thread page Beta
TSR Support Team

We have a brilliant team of more than 60 Support Team members looking after discussions on The Student Room, helping to make it a fun, safe and useful place to hang out.

Updated: April 3, 2011
What's the best type of cheese?
Useful resources

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.