The World’s Unlikeliest Tree-Huggers

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The World’s Unlikeliest Tree-Huggers

In the battle for environmental responsibility and against the glut of plastic junking up the planet, you can’t have too many allies.

Or can you?

Al-Shabab, a murderous terrorist group that proclaims allegiance to Al-Qaeda and controls parts of Somalia, has announced it is banning plastic bags.

Mohammed Abu Abdullah, one of the group’s leaders in East Africa, said plastic bags “pose a serious threat to the well-being of humans and animals alike.”

Similar messages were spread on al-Shabab’s radio stations and social media. They didn’t announce penalties for violators, but with their track record, they probably didn’t need to.

Plastic bags certainly pose a problem. But, as many people pointed out, so do car bombings, kidnappings, mass murders and banning humanitarian aid, all of which al-Shabab is still fine with. The selective assessment of right and wrong understandably attracted attention.

“They have no problem stoning to death a mother of eight,” declared the New York Post, referring to a recent incident where al-Shabab killed a woman for alleged adultery. “But they wouldn’t dare harm Mother Nature.”

“Who knew terrorists could be so conscientious?” noted the Acton Institute, a religion-oriented think tank. “Taking care of the environment is good…but let’s start by not blowing each other up first.”

At Echo Environmental, we agree. We’d be happy to advise al-Shabab on helping the environment, but we’d start with recycling the hardware – and changing the mindset – that lead to so much misery.