The Taliban are Afghanis who were encouraged by the CIA under the Carter administration to become Mujahideen, guerrilla warriors engaged in a jihad against the Soviet Union that had a puppet dictator installed in Afghanistan. The Carter administration, through Zbigniew Brzezinski, Carter's national security advisor, told the Taliban that God was on their side. The US financed and trained the Taliban who ousted the Soviet regime from Afghanistan.
As for al Qaeda, it is much more so an on-going witting CIA tool.
The important thing to understand about the relationship between the Taliban and al Qaeda is that the Taliban, while being sharia followers (the Qur'an is their constitutional law), has said that it told al Qaeda that it could not engage in terrorist activities. In addition, the Taliban had warned the US of the impending 9-11 attacks. The Taliban had also cut way back on the global heroin supply that was coming out of Afghanistan.
Their treatment of women and girls was harsh and strict as called for under their traditional interpretation of the Qur'an. However, they were equally strict concerning all forms of things seen as illegal under that interpretation. This is not to excuse their treatment of females. It is only to say that their focus was sharia, tribal, parochial, and provincial. They were not driven by a global vision of Islam.
Enter David Hicks. As of Saturday, February 03, 2007, David Hicks has been held by the US at GuantÃ¡namo Bay, Cuba, for more than five years without a trial. He is an Australian who went to Afghanistan in his mid twenties in January 2001. He was captured by the Northern Alliance and sold to the US.
It is important here to remember that the US then allowed a convoy of al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden to drive out of Afghanistan into Pakistan. The US also airlifted al Qaeda to Pakistan. This is documented as indisputable.
Now, David Hicks is back in the news, because he is once again to face charges before a military commission as an unlawful combatant even though the US government is not alleging he engaged the US in combat. He is being charged with having trained with the Mujahideen and al Qaeda.
Also, it is critical to remember that the Taliban had not been involved in the planning or execution of 9-11, but rather that the Bush administration, with malice aforethought, used the entire thing as a false-flag pretext for imperial expansion in the Middle East to dominate the regions oil and drug trade and to subjugate the people and force open their markets to ruin the little people, the little vendors and farmers, etc.
The actions of the Empire deliberately steered others to attack the US on US soil. They were facilitated and encouraged and egged on by elements in ultimate control of the US government.
Therefore, any trial of David Hicks in the name of the US is utterly hypocritical if George W. Bush and his courtiers are not likewise tried for their numerous, evident high crimes.
We don't advocate coercive trials and punishments but rather mental/spiritual help all the way around. David Hicks, the Taliban, the former Soviets, al Qaeda, the neocons, and all others who do not renounce greed, violence, depravity, and all forms of selfishness, are misguided and need to see and follow the light pouring out of the strait gate from the narrow way.
The Marxists were, and are, wrong. The jihadists are wrong. Sharia is wrong. However, so is capitalism. Also, that the elitists pit group against group, one after another, in a long chain stretching back to the beginning, is every bit as wrong.
Had the US left Mohammed Mosaddegh in power in Iran and left Jacobo Arbenz in power in Guatemala and had never engaged in all the cloak and dagger activities but rather had reached out to help the common people in both countries and every country, this world would have been long since saved. The spirit of such reaching out and help and assistance, giving and sharing, would have seen to the correction of all the global pollution, global warming, war, and all the rest of global and human suffering.
It's obvious. It's time to transform what the conservatives call human nature.
Think about the trillions of dollars that have been wasted on weapons and war. Think about what would have resulted if all the effort that has gone into militarism had gone toward good causes. Would any human being on earth be wanting for anything?