We don’t exactly shy away from highlighting abuses of women and young girls in Afghanistan. (See a sample of stories here.) The more I learn about the socio-political culture of that country, the less I like it. And I wasn’t wild about the place to begin with. I blame the multiculturalists for trying to get the rest of us to ignore egregious abuse in the name of – oh, does it matter why they do it? I don’t think so.
Older, powerful men boosted their social status by keeping boys as sexual playthings and the practice was celebrated in song and dance, a military study claimed.
“To dismiss the existence of this dynamic out of desire to avoid western discomfort is to risk failing to comprehend an essential social force underlying Pashtun culture,” the report said.
British officers in Helmand requested the study to help them understand the sexual behaviour of locals and Afghan comrades after young soldiers became uneasy they were being propositioned.
American social scientists employed to help troops understand the local culture reported that homosexual sex was widespread among the Pashtun ethnic group in southern Afghanistan.
Strict separation of men and women, coupled with poverty and the significant expense of getting married, contributed to young men turning to each other for sexual companionship.
The study, called ‘Pashtun Sexuality’, said that as well as willing sex between young men, “boys are appreciated for physical beauty and apprenticed to older men for their sexual initiation”.
The practice of ‘bache bazi’ or boy play, is known throughout Afghanistan, but is particularly renowned in the city of Kandahar next to Helmand, where prepubescent boys are widely admired.
Western soldiers often report feeling unease at the attentions of their Afghan comrades, who are affectionate with each other and sometimes wear make-up.
British troops have also talked of their disgust at police or militias keeping young boys as hangers on.
Look. I don’t care what people who are over the age of sexual consent do willingly. But the business with the kids is not something Western troops (and Western citizens in whose names the troops do their work) should tolerate. Full stop.by