Ridicule as a Tool for IO/PSYOPS in Afghanistan
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"Appreciating what Afghans find funny and shameful allows us to develop a much needed sense of cultural intuition regarding what constitutes ridicule amongst Afghans. With a proper sense of the absurd, in the Afghan context, we increase our ability to relate to populations and disseminate messages that resonate in a more engaging and memorable way. Operationalizing the use of humor and ridicule as a tool of IO/PSYOPS in Afghanistan could increase the coalition and GIRoA's [Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan] ability to undercut Taliban leadership in the eyes of their followers and supporters, provoke them into rash and hurried decisions, mock or trick combatants into laying down their arms, create divisions and doubts in multiple forms in the enemy camps, lessen their power to intimidate and weaken their omnipotence in the eyes of the rest of the population. In order to do this, there needs to be some culturally specific guidelines as to what is funny and what constitutes ridicule in the Afghan context. It is to this end that this paper is dedicated."
This article was published in Culture and Conflict Review (Spring 2010), v.4 no.1
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