Brit Military Bishop 'Admires' Taliban Loyalty

Gordon Brown does not agree
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 14, 2009 3:43 AM CST
Brit Military Bishop 'Admires' Taliban Loyalty
Prime Minister Gordon Brown left, passes recently trained Afghan troops yesterday in Camp Bastion, Afghanistan.   (AP Photo/Matt Cardy, Pool)

The Taliban's faith and loyalty to one another can be regarded as admirable, according to a British military bishop, who is urging an approach to them that recognizes they're not all bad. The Church of England's bishop to the Armed Forces, Stephen Venner, made his comments as Prime Minister Gordon Brown blasted the Taliban for aiming to cause "maximum damage" in Afghanistan. But Venner said the West has been "too simplistic in our attitude" toward the Taliban.

"There’s a large number of things the Taliban stand for which none of us could approve, but simply to say therefore that everything they do is bad is not helping," he added. A former Afghanistan commander called the bishop naive. "Their central creed and ethos is about violent oppression which comes from a politics of extreme religion that has little to commend it," he told the Telegraph.
(More Afghanistan stories.)

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