Sunday, 23 March 2008

Manipulation of the weak

In Afghanistan, 5000 people have been protesting, chanting 'Death to the Netherlands' over the Wilders film; 'Death to Denmark' over the Muhammad cartoons; 'Death to America' and 'Death to Jews', simply because those are common refrains among protestors in certain parts of the world.

Let us crunch some numbers here. 5000 out of a population of 32 million ain't a massive amount. In Afghanistan, only 28% of the people can read; presumably fewer than that could find the Netherlands or Denmark or the USA or Israel on a map. If the map was produced in the Arab world, it probably would not show Israel even for the benefit of those who can read.

So, who are the protestors? Are they the minority of literate people who could have the faintest idea what the protest is about? Or are they illiterate people, being manipulated by those who should know better? What do you think?

Joseph Goebbels understood that, to control people, the best and surest way of doing it is to create a common enemy. In doing so, it takes people's minds off the 40% unemployment rate; that fewer than 10% have a landline or mobile phone; GDP per capita is barely $1000; that illiteracy among women is three times that among men; that nearly 16% of babies do not survive infancy.

These are the things people should be protesting about.

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