Friday, April 29, 2005

So Many Enemies, So Little time

Just started reading Elinor Burkett's So Many Enemies, So Little Time: An American Woman in All the Wrong Places, which I ordered from Amazon after reading the author's stimulating NY Times oped about Kyrgyzstan's "Tulip Revolution." About 80 pages into it, Burkett's observations about her time in Bishkek track pretty closely with what I saw in Tashkent. Coincidentally, we were both Fulbrighters. Burkett's also one of David Horowitz's "Second Thoughts" people, and I used to work for David. Anyhow, her perspective on the situation in Central Asia seems about right, at least so far as I've read... Here's a section about an Afghan refugee couple she met in Bishkek:
After a friend was beaten because she'd exposed an inch of her wrist while checking the size of underwear in the market, Munvara decided that she'd had enough and headed up to Mazar-i-Sharif, beyond Taliban control, to find a way out of the country. "I vowed that I would not go back so long as there was a Muslim government in Afghanistan," Munvara said, her body taught with fury.

Her husband, also a refugee, put his hand on her knee, then turned to me and cracked, "Islam, Islam, Islam. You can't imagine how tired we are of hearing about Islam."