Afghanistan Burning

Respect for religious feelings is the key to win the hearts of Afghans,” said Stanley Fernandes, S.J., director of the Jesuit Refugee Service of South Asia, commenting on the mass protests that followed the news of the burning of Korans by U.S. soldiers. As many as 30 people have been killed in violence related to the Koran burnings. Father Fernandes, after a recent trip to Kabul, called the situation critical. An official apology from President Obama has been issued, but, he said, “I think it will take time before the situation returns to calm.” Father Fernandes said, “I do not think one risks a religious war against the West, but incidents like this…do not help build confidence and a peaceful atmosphere. In these cases, then, the instinct of the crowd prevails, opening the floodgates to violence.”

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