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I am a Practitioner of 'The 7e Way of Leaders' where a Leader will Envision, Enable (ASK for TOP D), Empower, Execute, Energize, and Evolve grounded on ETHICS!

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Daily Lessons from Life 02 January 2016 - Shock, anger after deadly Taliban attack on Kabul French eatery

"Shock, anger after deadly Taliban attack on Kabul French eatery - AFP 02 Jan 2016

KABUL: Emotions ran high Saturday in a Kabul neighbourhood where a Taliban suicide bomber struck a French restaurant popular with expats, killing two people including a 12-year-old boy hit by flying shrapnel.

Friday's powerful bombing of Le Jardin, the second Taliban attack in Kabul in a week, reduced a building to smouldering rubble and left the residential neighbourhood strewn with debris and wrecked cars.

Shopkeeper Ahmed Massoud's cousin, a guard at the Afghan-owned restaurant, was killed as the bomber detonated his suicide vest when he stopped to frisk him.

The intensity of the blast blew out windows and left a 12-year-old Afghan boy dead on the doorstep of an adjacent grocery shop.

"I saw a huge flame and was knocked unconscious for a few minutes," said Massoud, 21, pointing at a pool of dried blood on the floor.

"Everyone in this neighbourhood knew this restaurant was a high-value target. And we paid a huge price for it."

His comment typifies what many in Afghanistan feel, seemingly trapped in a hopeless quagmire after 14 years of war, with civilians increasingly caught between the government and a resurgent Taliban.

The Taliban, who vowed to safeguard lives of ordinary Afghans before launching their annual summer offensive last year, typically attack places with a high density of civilians.

The Taliban were unable to breach Le Jardin - a popular hangout for foreigners and wealthy Afghans - but the bombing at the entrance left the working-class neighbourhood of Qala-e-Fathullah reeling in shock.

The bombing evokes painful memories of an attack in January 2014 on a Lebanese restaurant in Kabul that left 21 people dead.

The raid on Taverna du Liban saw gunmen mowing down diners and staff, including 13 foreigners enjoying an evening out at a low-key social venue.

The latest bombing comes despite a renewed international push to revive peace talks with the Taliban.

President Ashraf Ghani on Thursday announced a first round of dialogue between Afghanistan, Pakistan, US and China on January 11 to lay out a comprehensive roadmap for peace.

Pakistan - the Taliban's historic backers - hosted a milestone first round of talks in July but the negotiations stalled when the insurgents belatedly confirmed the death of longtime leader Mullah Omar."

Well, it has to happen. Not a day later!!

Lessons for me are:

1. 14 years of war! It has been that LONG since the USSR or Russian were thrown out. The Talibans were thrown out, supposedly. And LIFE has not changed for the better in 14 years! That is tenacity if you can find a positive spin to this human tragedy. But if you call a spade a spade, it is TRAGEDY and NOT tenacity!;

2. Will it stop? It will ONLY stop when the Afghan people decide that THEY TRULY want peace! That the LEADERS truly want peace and NOT just to hold on or grab power to enrich themselves. With ill-gotten wealth, some of them at least can buy themselves 'peace' in a foreign country where war does not exist!!;

3. with the 'international efforts' to talk peace, will it succeed. My take is that it WILL NOT unless the PEOPLE want it BADLY, obsessively! Only when the desire for peace if BEYOND rational reasoning and go into the EMOTIONAL realm WILL people take drastic steps to restore peace and stability so that people can at least work on fulfilling their dream of being prosperous and having a decent human existence. Instead of living in fear of not knowing when and where the NEXT suicide bombing will take place.

Peace to the world. We must continue to long for it regardless. When there is hope, there is a chance!

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