Thursday, September 07, 2006

Pray for the People

As you pray for the soldiers and even me individually, pray for the Afghans and their nation as well. As I work more closely with my JAG counterparts in the two different commands I’m assigned to mentor, I get discouraged by what I see. For those familiar with the Book of Mormon, think Gadianton Robbers and you’ll know what kind of system is in power here and what I’m having to deal with. For those not familiar with the term, think secret societies, secret combinations whose sole purpose is to get power, maintain power and maintain their brethren in power.

The president of the country, I’m told, is generally honest and a good guy, but in order to maintain control of the government, he has had to appoint as his ministers and advisers, warlords and former Mujahaden fighters. These can be very bad, evil, corrupt men. And they uphold evil, corrupt men at the commands where I work. I can’t and don’t want to give out details for security reasons but also because I don’t want you having nightmares, but the atrocities that happen amongst the soldiers is pretty sad.

I know the Lord can work miracles in this land. One of those miracles needs to be that good men get into positions of power. So please pray for that.

If you ever hear anyone complaining about our system of government or our court system, punch them in the mouth for me, drug them and put them on the next plane to Kabul. Let them live under this system for even a few days and they will gain an immediate appreciation for what a great system of government we have. I’m not saying that our system is perfect. In fact it’s not, but for the most part it’s fair. I wish I could say the same about this one.

Now, lest you leave this posting completely depressed, let me say this. The Afghans are working hard towards becoming a democratic society, the military in particular. Honorable men have spent hours writing and passing into law a brand new military justice code. It went into effect earlier this year. That in itself was a small miracle. It’s patterned after our own system of justice so is very easy for me to understand. Now, if we could just get it applied evenly to everyone we would make progress. My one goal, my purpose in life so to speak, is to bring just one of these Gadianton’s to trial. I truly believe that would be the beginning of the end of corruption in the military.

So as I said, pray for me, but pray for the people and pray that their government will survive.

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