Once Upon a Time in Afghanistan…

(11AM EST – promoted by Nightprowlkitty)

At a time prior to one of the so called great powers on this planet decided it wanted to control.

Photos Of Afghanistan’s Past: Modernity Lost

June 18, 2010 The Afghanistan of Mohammad Qayoumi’s memory is far from that of a “broken 13th century country,” as it was recently described by British Defense Secretary Liam Fox.

Qayoumi, now a university president in America, grew up in Kabul in the 1950s and ’60s. It was a period of calm and prosperity – and even optimism – before the Soviet invasion.

And thanks to a batch of vintage photos, Qayoumi has opened a window into that world with a photo essay recently published in Foreign Policy. The images depict a world that is slick, modern – even Western.

The photos show women in demure scarves, but also in pencil skirts and other fashions of the 1950s and ’60s. And just as striking is what some of the women are doing: buying records. Back then, Qayoumi tells NPR’s Deborah Amos, Afghans favored songs by Western pop singers like Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley and Tom Jones.

But this wasn’t the first time as Mohammad Qayoumi says in the short discussion.

“From the 1880s to 1978, Afghanistan was a very stable country, which had only six rulers,” Qayoumi says, “which is far more stable than most European countries in that era.”

Of course, Afghanistan’s history also includes many eras of conflict and destruction, from the empire of Alexander the Great to the Arab conquests, and more recently, to occupations by Britain and the Soviet Union.

As for the future, Qayoumi cites an Afghan saying: “A stream that has seen water before will see water in the future, also.” To listen to the short Discussion

Then while the other so called major power on this planet helped the Afghans in the occupation by the other, they walked away from their promises to the Afghans when the others left, and the rest is more history and the present.

The Foreign Policy site report: Record stores, Mad Men furniture, and pencil skirts — when Kabul had rock ‘n’ roll, not rockets., there are a number of photo’s to review.

4 comments

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    • jimstaro on June 18, 2010 at 9:08 pm
      Author

    What we brought to the Iraqi People, as we have others, for no reason, and what we’ll once again walk away from, as we have others, not just the present mental issues but the present to long lasting physical results, happening to many at any time even those yet born, of occupations!!

    100 psychiatrists serve nation of 30 million psychologically shattered by war

    18 June 2010 Asmaa Shaker sits on a leopard-print blanket in a Baghdad psychiatric hospital, her eyes heavy. The drugs have kicked in now, the fear has subsided, and she can sleep.

    Without medication, she rarely sleeps. Three times in five years, her home was damaged in bombings, the most recent just two weeks ago. Her husband’s leg was ripped from his body, her 12-year-old son turns yellow and shakes at the thought of leaving the house, the family is thousands of dollars in debt, and she lives with a constant fear.

    “The pressure is too great,” she said at Ibn Rushd, a central Baghdad psychiatric hospital. “I found my neighbors on the ground, children dead on the ground. I’m scared. I’m very scared.”

    Snip

    Across Iraq, 100 psychiatrists are available to serve a population of about 30 million people, Iraq’s psychiatric association says. Many people self-medicate, and prescription drug abuse is now the number one substance abuse problem in Iraq. The most abused drug is called Artane, known generically as trihexyphenidyl but referred to in Iraq as the “pill of courage,” with a marked sedative effect.

    Snip

    Hardan is philosophical about the violence of the past seven years. “Everything that is bad we threw on the occupation,” he said. “But if we shook hands and were united, this wouldn’t have happened to us. I hope our country can finally have some rest.”  Continued

    What Invasion, War and Occupation Leave Behind!!

     

  1. Afghanistan in 1955, posted by Jacob Freeze, “the prophetic wonder-man of political blogging.”

  2. Featuring JPMorgan and The World Bank,

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06

    “A few high-risk investors are sufficiently intrigued by the country’s potential to take an early look. JP Morgan, for instance, has just sent a team of mining experts to Afghanistan to examine possible projects to develop…’

    Mining industry executives, as well as American officials, are also concerned about the corruption in the Afghan government, and are uncertain how to avoid turning the discovery of great mineral wealth into nothing more than a windfall for Kabul’s oligarchs.

    “I know some people have gone in to kick the tires, and some guys found there was too much risk, too much corruption, and didn’t want to play the game,” observed Mr. Yeager, the Colorado geologist. “They have got to resolve the corruption issue.”

    The pesky ‘corruption issue’ needs to be resolved before they can fully commit to playing their games. WTF?    

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