The Qur'an, Islam's holy Scripture, professes "there is not an animal in the earth, nor a flying creature flying on two wings, but they are people like unto you." According to the prophet Mohammed, a good deed done to an animal is as meritorious as a good deed done to a human being, while an act of cruelty to an animal is as bad as an act of cruelty to a human being.
But not long ago, the Associated Press published a photograph captioned "Savagery in Afghanistan." Under this dog-fighting photo, it was noted, "Dogs fight it out as people watch in Kabul, Afghanistan. Every Friday, the Muslim day of rest, hundreds of people participate in dog fights that were banned when the Taliban religious army was in power."
In other areas of Afghanistan no longer under Taliban control, dog fighting, rooster fighting and songbird fighting are also commonplace.
While deployed in Afghanistan, British army Sgt. Pen Farthing, author of "One Dog at a Time: Saving the Strays of Afghanistan," witnessed Afghan soldiers among a crowd cheering while dogs were forced to tear each other apart. Although threatened by the crowd, Farthing freed the dogs.
Our government should pressure Afghan leaders to adhere to Qur'an's prohibition against all animal fighting. I'm sure most American military personnel who have witnessed animal fighting in Afghanistan are angry and indignant that while they risk life and limb for the sake of Afghanistan's people, they are advised to look the other way while some Afghans take advantage of their new freedom by committing atrocities against animals.
Canandaigua, Ontario County