HERAT, AFGHANISTAN. Vendors and horse carts of goods near the ancient citadel. 
Photograph by James L. Stanfield.

HERAT, AFGHANISTAN. Vendors and horse carts of goods near the ancient citadel. 

Photograph by James L. Stanfield.



WAKHAN CORRIDOR, AFGHANISTAN. An Afghan Kyrgyz boy plays while the family’s clothes are drying, laid out on the summer grass.
Photograph by Matthieu Paley. 

WAKHAN CORRIDOR, AFGHANISTAN. An Afghan Kyrgyz boy plays while the family’s clothes are drying, laid out on the summer grass.

Photograph by Matthieu Paley



“Detainees in US custody in Abu Ghraib [Iraq], Kandahar and Bagram [Afghanistan] (where many were taken to before Guantanamo) have reported being sodomised with broomsticks, a ‘chemical light’ or rifles. Other forms of sexual humiliation reported have been; parading men naked in front of female soldiers, forcing them to wear women’s underwear and dance with other men, forcing them to undress in front of female interrogators and guards, touching their genitals or provoking them in a ‘humiliating’ way and forcing them to watch pornography. Most detainees in U.S. custody have alleged that they were either raped, threatened with rape, or anally probed. Sexual violence is a war crime. Sexual humiliation is used to induce feelings of humiliation and fear.”


“The nightmare of Guantanamo is something of a picnic compared to Bagram,” a fact that prisoners can relate with firsthand knowledge: A good portion of the detainees in Guantanamo were first held in Bagram. “Our clients were beaten more badly in Afghanistan than in Guantanamo, basically because, in Cuba, the whole world is watching.”

 —Eric Lewis, a co-counsel in one of the Bagram-Habeas cases (excerpt from Black Hole; The other Guantanamo by Eliza Griswold)



To the anon who asked about the whole “Gul Marjan i na mani”-thing (I deleted your message because I didn’t know the answer to your question but now I found out). 

Gul Marjan is a joke famous among Afghans, about a student who always fails his exams but gets promoted just because he refuses the results. Similarly, Abdullah Abdullah, the candidate opposite to Dr. Ashraf Ghani, didn’t accept the results of the 2014 presidential elections in Afghanistan because his rival had the most votes. Therefore, Afghans gave Abdullah Abdullah the name “Gul Marjan” and started saying “Gul Marjan i na mani” (“Gul Marjan does not accept”). There are a lot of videos of Afghans and non-Afghans saying “Gul Marja i na mani”, so it has become a very popular phrase. See for example this video, where a person asks another person “what happened about Afghan elections” and the other person answers “Gul Marjan i na mani”. 

There’s even a video explaining it. The whole thing is so funny. 



The 1393/2014 Nowruz celebration (Persian New Year) in Kabul, Afghanistan on March 27, 2014. 

Photographs by Fardin Waezi



tsamthepoet:

”Tell your jets not to bomb this place” (Afghanistan)

tsamthepoet:

”Tell your jets not to bomb this place” (Afghanistan)



AFGHANISTAN. A Kuchi family (Pashtun nomads) gather before a fire, baking bread.
Photograph by (Unknown)/National Geographic. 

AFGHANISTAN. A Kuchi family (Pashtun nomads) gather before a fire, baking bread.

Photograph by (Unknown)/National Geographic




KUNAR, AFGHANISTAN. Korengal valley. U.S. forces bomb a village with white phosphorus. The area burned for four days after the attack. 
Photograph by Tim Hetherington. 

The Korengal Valley, inhabited by the Pashai people of Afghanistan, is situated in the Pech district of Kunar province in eastern Afghanistan. The valley has been dubbed “the Valley of Death" by American soldiers and Western media because of the high death tolls that occured during raids and fights. The troops who patrolled the valley for five years regularly called for mortars containing white phosphorus to be fired to shield them from Taliban attack. According to a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW), leaked documents have revealed more than 1,100 reported instances from 2005 to 2009 alone in which U.S.-led forces had used white phosphorus grenades, rockets, and bombs, often in residential areas.

KUNAR, AFGHANISTAN. Korengal valley. U.S. forces bomb a village with white phosphorus. The area burned for four days after the attack. 

Photograph by Tim Hetherington

The Korengal Valley, inhabited by the Pashai people of Afghanistan, is situated in the Pech district of Kunar province in eastern Afghanistan. The valley has been dubbed “the Valley of Death" by American soldiers and Western media because of the high death tolls that occured during raids and fights. The troops who patrolled the valley for five years regularly called for mortars containing white phosphorus to be fired to shield them from Taliban attack. According to a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW), leaked documents have revealed more than 1,100 reported instances from 2005 to 2009 alone in which U.S.-led forces had used white phosphorus grenades, rockets, and bombs, often in residential areas.



“Is Hamas a by-product of the Israeli occupation? Yes. Just as Hezbollah is a by-product of the Israeli occupation of Lebanon, al-Shabab a by-product of Ethiopia’s occupation of Somalia, al-Qaeda of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, and the Islamic State, of the US ’ occupation of Iraq. Historical records make that clear.”

 —

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2014/07/journalistic-responsibility-medi-20147863017439709.html (via theoccupiedpopulation)

Al-Qaeda is not a by-product of Soviet occupation. Al-Qaeda militants were recruited by the U.S. to fight communism in Afghanistan. Therefore, Al-Qaeda is not a by-product of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan; it is a product of U.S. interests in the country. 

What happened in Afghanistan has not been discussed in the West. When the Soviet Union intervened in Afghanistan, the US saw in it an opportunity that was two-fold. One, to tie the Soviet Union in a Vietnam-like war in Afghanistan. Two, they saw in it an opportunity to mobilise the entire Muslim world in a violent way against the Soviet Union, against communism.

American operatives went around the Muslim world recruiting for the jihad in Afghanistan. This whole phenomenon of jihad as an international armed struggle has not existed in the Muslim world since the 10th century. It was brought back into being, enlivened, and pan-Islamised by the American effort. I saw planeloads of them arriving—from Algeria, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and Palestine. These people were brought in, given an ideology, told that the armed struggle is a virtuous thing to do, and the whole notion of jihad as an international pan-Islamic terrorist movement was born. The US spent 8 billion dollars in producing the bin Ladens of our time. That camp they hit in Afghanistan, I visited it in 1986. It was a CIA-sponsored camp.

Eqbal Ahmad



NORTHERN AFGHANISTAN. 1973. The Turkmen master falconer Djoura Eshan on horseback hunting with his hunting falcon near the village of Taouz Bulak. 
Photograph by Roland and Sabrina Michaud. 

NORTHERN AFGHANISTAN. 1973. The Turkmen master falconer Djoura Eshan on horseback hunting with his hunting falcon near the village of Taouz Bulak. 

Photograph by Roland and Sabrina Michaud. 



Here’s a tip: If you talk about drones in Pakistan and you say they kill the ‘tribal people’ (because they operate in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas/FATA) or if you talk about the Pakistani Army and how they bomb the ‘tribal people’ in FATA or the ‘northern people’ in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), you should know that you sound really dumb. Why not just say Pashtuns when that’s what you really mean to say? Ask yourself: who are the ‘tribal people’? They’re Pashtun tribes who live in FATA. And who are the ‘northern people’? Pashtuns in the Pashtun province of KPK. It’s as easy as that. I know of a lot of people who would rather not make it an ‘ethnic issue’, but you should know that it is. It is an ethnic issue and the ‘tribal people’ and ‘northern people’ you speak of say that themselves. The racism and violence they face in Pakistan isn’t because they’re ‘tribal’ or because they’re from the North (for instance, a lot of other ethnic groups in Pakistan are ‘tribal’ and from the North); it’s because they’re Pashtuns. Pashtun is their ethnic identity and you should’t leave that out. 



A Pakistani rocket injured a 10-year old girl in the Kunar province of eastern Afghanistan on Thursday night. And earlier this week, 61 rockets were fired into Kunar. Earlier in June, 120 rockers were fired. In May, over 1,000 rockets were fired. All of these were fired in Kunar, though the Pakistani Army shells five other provinces in eastern Afghanistan on a regular basis as well. 

This is what happened: In most of June and the beginning of July, the Pakistani Army was busy bombing people in North Waziristan, so it was quiet in Kunar for a few weeks, until now. Now they have resumed their shelling of eastern Afghanistan. It’s only a matter of time until helicopters, jets and airstrikes attack eastern Afghanistan again. 



WAKHAN CORRIDOR, AFGHANISTAN. Kyrgyz grandfather and grandchildren. 
Photograph by Cédric Houin/Varial Studio Photography.

WAKHAN CORRIDOR, AFGHANISTAN. Kyrgyz grandfather and grandchildren. 

Photograph by Cédric Houin/Varial Studio Photography.



A small clarification on this post.

In the original post I wrote that the Pakistani Army drones eastern Afghanistan. It has come to my attention that drones are unmanned airstrikes, meaning there is no pilot on board the aircraft. Pakistan carries out airstrikes (and shellings) in eastern Afghanistan which is almost the same as drones, except they’re manned, meaning there is a pilot on board the aircraft. The point stands still, but I thought I’d clarify. I also edited the original post long ago to “the Pakistani Army shells and carries out airstrikes in eastern Afghanistan”, which is more accurate.