A report today from The Christian Post suggests that the horrific flood conditions in Pakistan may be providing an open door for the Taliban and other Muslim extremist groups to gain ground in the area. Because international aid to the country has been slow-moving, groups with ties to terrorists are sponsoring aid distribution points in the most damaged areas, “helping people in areas where even the government has failed to reach,” says a representative from the Barnabus Fund. “In the time of need, the government’s slow response has given [extremists] the opportunity to win the hearts fo the affected people.” The representative also warned that this month of Ramadan offers an even greater opportunity to preach “their version of Islam” and attract new recruits.
On his blog this weekend, Eric Bryant, a pastor at the socially active Mosaic Church in Los Angeles, said the U.S. has promised significantly more aid than other developed nations in the world, but only a very small amount has been received by the Pakistanis as yet. In an emotional plea, Bryant quoted Berkeley professor Robert Reich in the Christian Science Monitor demanding more help for suffering Pakistan: “This is bizarre and shameful. We’re spending over $100 billion this year on military maneuvers to defeat the Taliban in Pakistan…over 200 helicopters are deployed in that effort. And we’re spending $2 billion in military aid to Pakistan. More must be done for flood victims immediately.” Bryant said Mosaic has gotten involved with relief efforts in Pakistan through World Vision and the International Mission Board and may send a medical team.