Thursday, August 19, 2010

Shakedown in Kabul

Today is Thursday, 19 August 2010.

“The evil that men do lives after them…”

Certainly the case with the W.BushCheney regime, and particularly in the case of its installation, as “president” of Afghanistan, of a middling civilian warlord and former Taliban, Hamid Karzai, a man, not of infinite jest, but of infinite appetites for wealth, power, and corruption.

A few days ago, Karzai announced that, as of four months from now, all private security companies in Afghanistan must cease operations. Licensed security companies are “invited” to sell their physical assets to the government. All security company employees may choose to join the Interior Ministry, which controls the largely-inept and hugely-corrupt National Police.

Why this sudden, drastic decree? In a word: cash flow.

To date, payments flowed from clients directly to the private companies, leaving only small opportunities for money to be siphoned off into the pockets of members of the government. Now, the Karzai crime family within the government will be able to extort payments, in the guise of taxes and fees, directly from the clients. Certainly, the scheme will be spun as the government shouldering its proper responsibilities, but Afghanistan is a failed state, a patchwork of competing corruption machines and rackets, where the “rule of law” is overwhelmingly a cover for private enrichment.

“Karzai” is Pashto for “Capone”.

Ferdinand Garcia Lorca was the greatest Spanish poet and playwright of the 20th century. He was also a leftist, an out-of-the-closet homosexual, and a sympathizer with oppressed minorities. As such, he was a perfect target for the fascists who launched a rebellion against the Spanish Republic on 17 July 1936. A few weeks later, being in the wrong place at the wrong time, Garcia Lorca was brutally assassinated, at the age of 38.

“Poem for Garcia Lorca on the Anniversary of His Murder in 1936”

The sunrise light this morning refracted rose
and yellow
through the high wisp clouds
and reflected from the stain my lawn’s become,
where puzzled birds peck desperately
and, even at first light,
cicada frantic chatter,
as if cocktail party end,
when everyone is anxious to go home with someone, anyone,
and nature begs the gods for rain.


Anonymous Appreciative Reader said...

Beautifully evocative poem. A proper tribute to Garcia Lorca.

3:46 PM  
Blogger HH said...

Thank you. What a loss that he died so young, and how much he accomplished in so short a time. And the poem accurately describes the sunrise on that day. "Magical" is a hack word, but it was.

3:58 PM  

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