Selasa, 21 Februari 2012

hormati lah kitab suci yang dihormati pemercayanya

More than half of Americans back Obama's Koran apology By Missy Ryan WASHINGTON | Mon Mar 5, 2012 6:42pm EST (Reuters) - More than half of Americans support President Barack Obama's apology for U.S. troops burning copies of the Koran, an incident that triggered a spate of bloody protests and attacks on U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan. In a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Monday, 56 percent of those surveyed backed Obama, who has been criticized by U.S. Republican presidential candidates for apologizing to Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Twenty-three percent disagreed. While the spasm of violence that erupted following the incident on a NATO base in Afghanistan does not appear to have significantly altered Americans' perspective on the war, 66 percent of those polled also said Washington should bring its troops home immediately. Obama's formal apology and the debate that decision created have underscored the delicate course the president must tread in his campaign for re-election in November. Afghanistan and other foreign policy issues are sure to take a backseat to the economy in the campaign but Obama is loath to give Republicans more ammunition in the crucial months before the elections. The poll, conducted from March 2 to March 5, showed that far more Democrats supported Obama's apology, with 76 percent of them saying Obama made the right decision. Only 37 percent of Republicans backed the apology, and almost half said Obama was not right to do so. Some 53 percent of independents supported the apology. In keeping with calls from Capitol Hill, Democrats surveyed professed even less support than Republicans for a continued U.S. presence in Afghanistan. Some 76 percent of Democrats said U.S. troops should be withdrawn immediately, compared with 53 percent of Republicans. Seventy percent of independents favored an immediate withdrawal. The poll included 1,143 Americans interviewed online. The poll had a credibility interval of 3.4 percentage points. Obama cannot allow the outcry over the Koran incident and other NATO missteps to undermine tentative security gains, weakening his ability to point to a series of security successes such as the killing of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, or worsen tensions with the mercurial Karzai government. His decision received extra scrutiny when, several days later, two U.S. officers were shot dead by an Afghan inside the Afghan Interior Ministry, one of a spate of so-called 'insider' attacks on NATO forces since the Koran burnings took place. The Koran burnings could be behind the death of up to six American soldiers. On Monday, a suicide bomber killed at least two civilians at the gates of the base where the Korans were burned. The Taliban said the attack was an act of 'revenge. Underlying the debate over Obama's apology are even larger questions about the future of U.S. involvement in Afghanistan, where over 10 years after the Taliban government was toppled the militant group remains a potent enemy. Obama plans to pull all of the 33,000 troops he deployed in 2009-10, credited with turning around the long-neglected campaign in Afghanistan, by this fall, leaving around 68,000 U.S. troops. Most foreign combat troops are due to withdraw by the end of 2014. (Editing by Warren Strobel and Eric Walsh) Afghan clerics demand punishment for Koran burners By Hamid Shalizi KABUL | Fri Mar 2, 2012 5:11pm EST (Reuters) - Senior Afghan clerics said on Friday the burning of Korans at a NATO base last month was an "evil act" that must be punished, a demand that could deepen widespread public anger over the incident. "The council strongly condemns this crime and inhumane, savage act by American troops by desecrating holy Korans," members of a council of clerics said after meeting President Hamid Karzai, according to a statement issued by his office. "The council emphasized that the apology for this evil act can never be accepted. Those who committed this crime must be publicly tried and punished." Despite apologies from President Barack Obama and other senior U.S. officials, the desecration of the Korans at Bagram air base ignited a wave of anti-Western fury across Afghanistan, including protests that killed 30 people. The Koran burnings are a setback to the Western campaign to win the hearts and minds of Afghans in order to weaken the Taliban and force the Muslim militant group to negotiate an end to the war now in its 11th year. A joint investigation, conducted by U.S. military officials and members of the Karzai government, has concluded that five U.S. soldiers were involved in the incident on a NATO military base, officials said on condition of anonymity. But the joint probe of the incident, one of three being conducted, did not provide specific recommendations on possible disciplinary action the soldiers might face, the officials said. A separate U.S. Army probe, which has not yet been completed, may contain such recommendations. The determination of the joint probe, which has not been released, that five soldiers were involved was first reported by the Washington Post. Yet the statements on Friday by the Afghans clerics - reflecting Muslims' deep reverence for the Koran - suggests at least some Afghans will not be satisfied without a public trial. DOUBT U.S. officials have said that the Korans were confiscated from prisoners on the base and mistakenly discarded in an incinerator. Afghan laborers found charred remains. A string of attacks on NATO troops by Afghan security forces followed the burnings. The killing of two U.S. officers, allegedly by a police intelligence officer, in the heart of the heavily guarded Interior Ministry raised particular concern and cast fresh doubt over the effectiveness of Afghan security forces. If their capabilities do not improve before foreign combat troops head home at the end of 2014, the country could face prolonged instability. Obama and other Western leaders are hoping to decisively weaken the Taliban before most foreign combat troops withdraw by the end of 2014. The White House also wants to broker political negotiations between the Karzai government and the Taliban. Yet Bagram, the air base where the Koran burnings took place, was a source of friction between the United States and Karzai's government long before the Korans were burned. An Afghan government commission investigating abuse accusations at the largest U.S. jail in Afghanistan, located at Bagram, has said inmates reported being tortured and held without evidence. Control over Afghans captured by U.S. forces is a major stumbling block in negotiations between Kabul and Washington on a strategic partnership agreement. NATO's night-time raids on Afghan homes, which Karzai objects to, are another point of contention. The agreement would define the terms of any U.S. military presence after the end of 2014. The senior clerics said the Koran burnings took place at Bagram because the administration of the prison at the facility, where the holy books had been located, did not treat religious material with respect. "We strongly demand the closure of prisons run by foreigners," the clerics told Karzai during the meeting, his office said. (Writing by Michael Georgy; additional reporting By Missy Ryan; Editing by Stacey Joyce) February 24, 2012 Koran Protests Resume in Afghanistan Despite U.S. Apology By ALISSA J. RUBIN, SHARIFULLAH SAHAK and JAWAD SUKHANYAR nyt KABUL, Afghanistan — Angry and violent protests broke out in Kabul after the midday prayer on Friday and gunfire could be heard near the large Eid Gah Mosque where a crowd of more than 1,000 people gathered in the center of the capital. The protests were in response to the burning of several Korans at the largest NATO air base in the country on Monday night, which the military afterward said was a inadvertent mistake and apologized for profusely. A second angry protest by an estimated 4,000 people armed with rocks and sticks was surging along the Kabul-Jalalabad road in the east of the city and moving toward central Kabul. At least seven police vehicles were seen retreating as the crowd hurled a barrage of stones. A few of the protesters were waving the white flag of the Taliban and some were wearing head wrappings with a jihad slogan written on them: “I sacrifice myself.” Protesters throughout the city were also shouting “Death to America.” There were reports of demonstrations in at least six other provinces, but it appeared they were peaceful, at least initially. The potential scope of the fallout from the burning of several copies of the Koran by American military personnel this week became chillingly clear on Thursday as a man in an Afghan Army uniform shot and killed two American soldiers. Seven Afghans were killed in three provinces on Thursday and many more were injured, most in skirmishes with Afghan security forces. Afghan officials quoted Thursday from a letter from President Obama in which he, among other things, apologized for the Koran burning. For President Hamid Karzai, the episode has fast become a political thicket. He and other government officials share with the Afghan populace a visceral disgust for the way American soldiers treated the holy book, but they recognize that violent protests could draw lethal responses from the police or soldiers, setting off a cycle of violence. Complicating matters is that some of Mr. Karzai’s allies in Parliament and elsewhere, including former mujahedeen leaders, have openly encouraged people to take to the streets and attack NATO forces. Mr. Karzai has not spoken out against them publicly, but his government’s overall message on Thursday suggested that he did not want more violence. Mr. Karzai met with members of both houses of Parliament at the presidential palace and urged them to help to try to contain the protests. “The president said that ‘according to our investigation we have found that American soldiers mistakenly insulted the Koran and we will accept their apology,’ ” said Fatima Aziz, a lawmaker from Kunduz who attended the meeting. “He said, ‘Whoever did this should be punished, and they should avoid its repetition. Insulting holy books and religion is not acceptable at all.’ ” Ms. Aziz, who said she wept when told of the Koran burning, also said Mr. Karzai told Parliament members that the protesters’ violent response was “‘not proper.’ ” Ms. Aziz, along with many educated Afghans, some of whom registered their views on Facebook, said she was dismayed by the exploitation of the incident for political gain and accused Iran and Pakistan of behind-the-scenes manipulation. Both countries would like to see the American military under pressure, and the reaction to the Koran burning has accomplished that. The Taliban released two statements on Thursday: one urged Afghans to attack foreign troops and installations as well as Afghan forces who are defending them, and the second urged Afghan security forces to turn their guns on their NATO colleagues. “The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan calls on all the youth present in the security apparatus of the Kabul regime to fulfill their religious and national duty,” the statement said, “to repent for their past sins and to record their names with gold in the history books of Islam and Afghanistan by turning their guns on the foreign infidel invaders instead of their own people.” Mohammed Salih Suljoqi, a lawmaker from Herat, said the episode “has been used as a tool of propaganda.” “The noble and pure emotions of our fellow countrymen are being misused by the intelligence agencies of neighboring countries,” he said, adding that some groups “are trying to destabilize the situation and lead the country into chaos.” “All these tragic incidents can spread a dark shadow and negatively impact the relationship of Afghanistan and the United States,” Mr. Suljoqi said. President Karzai’s office quoted from what it called a letter of apology from Mr. Obama that was delivered Thursday by Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker to signal to the Afghan public that the United States understood the distress the episode had caused. In the letter, according to Mr. Karzai’s press office, Mr. Obama wrote: “I wish to express my deep regret for the reported incident. I extend to you and the Afghan people my sincere apologies.” Mr. Obama’s office would not release the text of what it called a three-page letter on a “host of issues” between the two countries, “several sentences of which relate to this issue.” One of the Republican candidates for president, Newt Gingrich, issued a statement that harshly criticized Mr. Obama for his apology, calling it an “outrage.” “It is Hamid Karzai who owes the American people an apology, not the other way around,” the statement said. Four Afghans were killed in confrontations with the police in Oruzgan Province and one in Baghlan Province. In Nangarhar Province, two Afghans protesting the Koran burning were shot to death outside an American base in Khogyani District, said Mujib Rahman, the doctor on duty at the hospital in the district center. It was unclear whether they were shot by Afghan soldiers or NATO troops, but a NATO spokesman, Lt. Cmdr. James Williams, said NATO troops would shoot only if they were in mortal danger, and the protesters did not constitute mortal danger. About the same time as the protest and the shootings outside the base, an Afghan Army soldier turned his gun on NATO soldiers at the base, according to other protesters and elders. Two American soldiers were killed. Mr. Karzai and the religious leaders and elders he had assigned to investigate how the Koran burning came about released a statement calling for restraint by the Afghan people and demanding that those responsible be tried swiftly. “In view of the particular security situation in the country, we call on all our Muslim citizens of Afghanistan to exercise self-restraint and extra vigilance in dealing with the issue and avoid resorting to protests and demonstrations” that could be used by extremist groups to incite violence, the statement said, adding that NATO officials had “agreed that the perpetrators of the crime be brought to justice as soon as possible” in an open trial. A NATO inquiry into the burning continues, a spokesman said, adding that the United States would take disciplinary action if “warranted.” Reporting was contributed by an employee of The New York Times from Nangarhar Province. Tentara NATO bakar Quran, rakyat Afghan marah besar! Oleh Newswires Selasa, 21 Februari 2012 | 23:50 WIB KABUL: Pengunjuk rasa Afghanistan, bersenjata ketapel dan bom bensin, mengepung pangkalan militer terbesar tentara yang dipimpin oleh Amerika Serikat di Afghanistan pada Selasa 21 Februari 2012. Mereka marah atas laporan bahwa pasukan Pakta Pertahanan Atlantik Utara (NATO) membakar Al Quran. Penjaga di Pangkalan Udara Bagram, sekitar 60 kilometer utara Kabul, menanggapi dengan menembakkan peluru karet dari menara pengawas, kata saksi di tengah kerumunan berteriak Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar. Ratusan orang lain berunjuk rasa di Ibu Kota Afghanistan. Pasukan keamanan mengirim bantuan guna mencegah gerakan di negara Islam itu keluar kendali. Panglima pasukan Amerika Serikat di Afghanistan, Jenderal John Allen, meminta maaf dan memerintahkan penyelidikan atas laporan bahwa pasukan secara tak layak membuang sejumlah besar sarana agama Islam, termasuk Quran itu. "Saya menyampaikan permintaan maaf tulus atas pelanggaran itu, kepada Presiden Afghanistan, pemerintah Republik Islam Afghanistan, dan yang terpenting, kepada yang mulia rakyat Afghanistan," katanya. Pernyataan langsung Allen itu, diduga untuk membatasi kerusakan setelah kejadian serupa menghasilkan kekerasan dan serangan terhadap orang asing, ditayangkan berulang kali di televisi Afghanistan. Tuduhan bahwa pasukan NATO di pangkalan itu membakar banyak kitab suci umat Islam tersebut pertama kali dilaporkan oleh seorang pejabat tinggi pemerintah. Pejabat polisi setempat menyatakan lebih dari 2.000 orang berunjuk rasa di luar pangkalan luas kelolaan Amerika Serikat di Bagram tersebut. "Mereka berunjukrasa terhadap pembakaran Quran di pangkalan itu," kata pejabat itu kepada kantor berita Prancis AFP. Sidiq Siddiqi, Juru Bicara Kementerian Dalam Negeri, memastikan adanya unjuk rasa itu dan menyatakan bantuan dikirim ke daerah tersebut untuk mencegah kekerasan. Unjuk rasa lain oleh sekitar 500 orang terjadi di kebupaten Pul-e-Charkhi di Kabul, tidak jauh dari pangkalan besar persekutuan pertahanan Atlantik utara NATO di jalan Jalalabad, kata Juru Bicara Kepolisian Ashamat Estanakzai kepada AFP. "Polisi mengendalikan kerumunan itu, tidak ada kekerasan," katanya. Unjuk rasa serupa pada masa lalu menjadi kekerasan di Afghanistan, bangsa yang sangat taat Islam, di mana penghinaan terhadap agama itu diancam hukuman mati. Sekitar 10 orang tewas dan puluhan lagi luka dalam beberapa hari kerusuhan pada April 2011 akibat pembakaran Quran oleh pendeta Amerika Serikat Terry Jones di Florida. "Saya sudah memerintahkan penyelidikan atas laporan saya terima pada malam hari itu bahwa anggota ISAF di Pangkalan Udara Bagram secara tidak layak membuang sejumlah besar sarana agama Islam, termasuk Quran," katanya. "Kami benar-benar menyelidiki kejadian itu dan mengambil langkah untuk memastikan hal serupa tidak pernah terjadi lagi. Saya menjamin Anda. Saya berjanji kepada Anda. Ini sama sekali tidak disengaja," katanya. Allen berterima kasih kepada warga Afghanistan setempat, yang membantu mengenali kesalahan itu dan bekerja sama untuk segera mengambil tindakan perbaikan. Pasukan pimpinan NATO di Afghanistan pada tengah Februari menyatakan "salah membunuh" sekelompok anak-anak dalam serangan udara, yang membuat marah pemerintah, dan mengatakan kematian mereka mungkin terkait dengan gerakan menumpas pejuang di daerah tersebut. Serangan udara itu terjadi di dekat desa Giawa, di Propinsi Kapisa, Afghanistan timur, dan mengikuti pemboman serupa, yang memicu ketegangan antara pemerintah dengan NATO atas korban di kalangan rakyat, yang meningkat setiap tahun selama lima tahun belakangan, demikian AFP melaporkan. (Antara/ea)

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