A controversial Disco Restaurant
has recently opened in Kabul. While many Afghans like to drink alcohol there
is a strong conservative reaction to it. Afghans are not allowed into places
serving alcohol aimed at the internationals.
Youth culture his also coming up
against conservatives with Tolo TV, the first private station. Entertainment
and investigative journalism. The women’s tennis has been branded pornography.
A satire is planned of Charles’ wedding. Why did he marry an older women
Afghans wonder? The journalism tackles real problems full on such as
paedophiles and is very popular with the youth but not the conservatives who
view it as corrupting.
There are still 18,000 troops in
Afghanistan fighting the war on terror. Surprisingly not all of them are
popular. Underground jails where people are kept in cages without trial and
human rights violations tend to upset some over sensitive people.
Elections are very complicated.
Most of the international election staff do not know what is happening or
understand the process. God help an illiterate farmer. Serious trouble is
likely when the results are released. For example one ethnic group could be in
the majority in one area and field a large number of parliamentary and
provincial candidates while a minority only fields a few. For exactly this
reason the minority group could win the seat. One can imagine the outcry.
Opposition leader Mohammed Younis Qanuni is already talking of warning
More Taliban attacks in south and
east now weather has improved. Any of these could be anyone disgruntled with
heavy handed US troops rather than Taliban but calling them Taliban serves a
purpose for the US and Taliban.
In Jalalabad 3,000 people
complained to the authorities about unfair detentions by US troops. Breaking
into homes searching for militants and drug runners and not making many
Reports of car bombs being found
and dismantled. More concerted effort against urban areas, district centres
and Kabul expected.
The drug trade will inevitably
cause corruption, crime and violence. Paying Afghan farmers not to produce
might be more effective. US and UK farmers are, so why not? Look at the lack
of success in Columbia in 22 years.
US troops are needed, in the eyes
of most Afghans in the short term but there is a great deal of unease about
them long term. Help with security is wanted but they do not want another
occupier. Kharzai said, "We do not want only bases." US have built permanent
The first woman since the Taliban
was stoned to death for adultery recently. The man was whipped 100 times and
released. Religious and customary practices are still used to violate women’s
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