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Sehaty Foreign Exchange


June 23, 2000


Nemattullah's letter brought tears to my eyes. He is not quite right in his assertion that we treat Afghans like Americans treat Iranians. We treat them worse.

Our historical hatred of Afghans is only second to that of the Arabs. With a thousand and one bonds that exist between our two nations, our hatred can only testify to our small-mindedness. A big nation strives to swallow others and make them its own, no matter what the creed, color, religion or even language may be.

It is the worry of puny nations that always seek purity and isolation and cannot lend a helping hand even to neighbors in need lest they lose everything.

I remember about 25 years ago it was in the news that a servant had killed his employer and his employer's wife and children with a kitchen knife. This made the headlines for days. After that I remember hearing Afghans being referred to as the cut-throats. Imagine that! An entire nation was thus defined by the action of one desperate man. Isn't that the same way of thinking that condemns all Iranians as terrorists because of a few thugs in the Islamic government's service?

I think one of the reasons our country is in such a mess is that we don't know how to be compassionate. Perhaps if we treat our Afghan guests better, we will learn how to be nicer to each other and then maybe we can transform into a kinder nation.

George Bernard Shaw once said you see things and you ask, why? I have dreams and I ask, why not?

Massud Alemi


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