Watch what happens when you mix broken foreign policy with religion…

“One of Pakistan’s most influential clerics has renounced his support for polio immunisation, claiming that the programme is a cover for American spies.”

Pakistan needs less of this particular brand of religious stupidity.   The stupid is compounded by the bullshite American cloak and dagger games being played in Pakistan.

“But now he says he cannot back the policy after it emerged that the CIA had used a fake hepatitis drive to hunt for Osama bin Laden last year.

Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who organised the vaccination campaign, has been sentenced to 33 years in prison and his actions caused a wave of paranoia about foreign aid workers.”

Thank you America your botched war is screwing up yet another county in your drive to be the imperial power of this century as well.  Newsflash – China isn’t going to let you; get over yourself and stop killing brown people for not agreeing to be vassals.

“Pakistan is one of three countries where the disease remains endemic. Only 22 cases have been reported this year – compared with 59 in the same period in 2011 – and hopes were high that it could soon be declared polio free.

However, hard-line clerics have long opposed what they suspect is a Western conspiracy against Muslims. As a result health workers carefully cultivated moderate leaders, who issued fatwas – or religious rulings – declaring vaccination to be in line with Islamic teaching.”

There is just so much wrong going on here.  Vaccinations to eradicate polio are a fundamentally good idea.  This fundamentally good idea is trumped though when Western spy agencies use them to further their foreign policy goals.  Then you get backlash like this:

But Haq said that it made no sense for foreign agencies to keep children free from disease while bombing Pakistan.

“If you people are that much curious about the health of people living over there, it means that you are keeping these people alive just to kill them by drones,” he said.

The sad fatalism of marginalized people.  Wrong, but understandable given the circumstances.  Never forget that we are categorically *not* the good guys for much of the world.  If we’d taken the time and effort simply not to perpetuate misery and destruction on poor coloured folk we might actually have some respect in the world.