May 26, 2007

Most of what is written here originally appeared in a private blog just for family and friends. On that blog, in addition to my own words, I have posted various newspaper and web page articles about Afghanistan. I don't re-post most of them here, out of fear of being sued for copyright violation. And the links to news articles expire so quickly, I won't waste my time -- or yours -- posting such here.

But I wanted to highlight some of those articles I posted on my private blog, because they reflect my own observations while living here.

One was a profile of Sarah Chayes (sometimes spelled as Sarah Chase), a former reporter for NPR who has been working in Kandahar on a variety of projects, including Afghans for Civil Society, an organization I had the pleasure of visiting on my one and probably only visit to the area. A lot of people poo poo efforts by outsiders in Afghanistan, but I applaud them. Well, most of them. Like Sarah. And so do most Afghans. Especially the women here.

Another was entitled "squandering Kabul's rich architectural history and flavor," and was about how the houses and buildings going up like crazy here aren't at all appropriate for the climate, let alone being in any other way environmentally-appropriate. A friend here called it "Kabul bling." They aren' pretty, they look incredibly "cheap" in terms of class, and they aren't reflective of what Kabul architecture has been in the past. This city is becoming something very ugly.

I posted an article about the new novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini, who wrote The Kite Runner. I haven't read either, but will probably pick one or both of them up when I'm in Germany on my next leave.

I posted articles about the situation for women here, with these headlines, all of which indicate how bad it is here: "Domestic violence in Afghanistan 'endemic'", "Afghan judiciary fails women" and "Forsaken."

I also posted an article which I entitled "Taliban = Total Wankers," but that's not what it was called originally (grin). It was a news article about how in Uruzgan, which is next to Kandahar province, the Taliban prevents volunteers and health workers, including Afghan nationals, to vaccinate the children against polio. These vaccinations are something most of the mothers there very much want.

I don't have time to go looking for these articles; instead, I have various key word searches relating to Afghanistan, various media outlets focused specifically on Afghanstian, and various blogs relating to such in my RSS reader. It goes out and finds these articles for me. I read the headlines every day and decide which to read. Saves hours and hours of time.


If you have read this blawg, PLEASE let me know.
Comments are welcomed, and motivate me to keep writing --
without comments, I start to think I'm talking to cyberair.

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