Wednesday, November 17, 2004

An Afghan hospital

I heard From Our Own Correspondent on Saturday (13 November) 11:30 on BBC Radio 4. Strangely, they did not have the report that was first up on the World Service edition, Sunday 8:00, about the appalling state of the chest clinic in Kabul.

There was not much on their website  either, but you can always click on the listen again facility for the World Service edition.

They did however have Hugh Sykes'  rather fine piece, featuring a conversation with an Iraqi airline pilot :
"We may fight in self-defence, but if you are unarmed we cannot shoot you. If we take you prisoner, and then if we cannot provide food and drink, we must release you. Whatever we do, we must treat you as a human being." ...
"This 11 September, this has damaged us deeply. This was NOT Islam," he says: "Our religion is peace and respect. Salaam aleikum means peace be upon you."

And he says it is about respect for all humanity.

For example: "If you are by a stream, you must take only the water that you need, so that others may share it and," he adds, warming to his theme, "if you are hunting, you must never hunt for pleasure, only to provide food that you really need."
"Ramadan is very important not only for our health. It is so that we can feel what it is really like to be poor and hungry and thirsty.

"Islam is a religion for the people, and that," he concludes, "is why nearly all Arab governments do not like true Islam, because it requires them to share their wealth, and to be equal with the people, and that they do not want."
There wasn't much on the website either about William Dalrymple's 'The Sufi and the Shrine' broadcast on BBC Radio 3 , 31 Oct.


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