Pardon my rant, (was Re: Afghanistan after the war)

From: Amara Graps (
Date: Mon Nov 12 2001 - 10:11:04 MST

Brian D Williams: Mon Nov 12, 2001

>From: Amara Graps <>
>>Let them tell you. The Afghans are a fiercely independent, proud
>>people, with a rich history going back centuries, with deep inner
>>lives, with the last one or two hundred years tied strongly to
>>their land. The binding of that culture is their language and a
>>combination of the above.

>The people of Afghanistan are a whole series of tribes

A loose collection of perhaps half-dozen associated groups who
love wild open spaces and have a close affinity with their land, who
in the past had a long tradition of song, art, poetry and a deeply
mystical life. They were in the middle of an intellectual emergence
when the Soviets invaded. At that time, the different Muslims (Shia
and Sunni) cooperated, their brand of Islam was very moderate, women
were going to universities and 'unveiled', wearing western dress.

>with a long history of fighting with each other as tribes will do. The only
>time they are known to unite is to fight outsiders.

It might be hard to say _now_ who the Afghans are because at least
1/2 of them are dead or in exile: murdered by the Soviets between
1979 and about 1985 and later by whoever else. That was about one
million Afghans killed. Or was it two million? three million? Nobody
knows for sure. In the mid 1980s, the largest refugee population in
the world were Afghans: Many millions over the world from the four
million refugees in Pakistan, a couple of million in Iran, hundreds
of thousands in London, Paris, Canada, the USA, Austrailia. A
newly-emerging intellectual class disappeared into the Soviet jails
in 1979 and were not heard from again. Beautiful, ancient towns full
of art treasures bombed flat. There is not much left of the country
any more.

The Afghans call the Soviet 1979 Invasion: "The Catastrophe".
I wonder why.


Amara Graps, PhD email:
Computational Physics vita:
Multiplex Answers URL:
"Drosam pieder pasaule." (The world belongs to the brave.)
                             --a Latvian proverb

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