Category Archives: Afghanistan

Poetry Slam (1) Cigar

My first attempt at travel poetry: I went to the bazaar in Kandahar and bought a cigar from a guy called Bashar.   Don’t worry. I will continue to write predominantly in prose. (Zur deutschen Version.)

Posted in Afghanistan, Travel | Tagged , | 5 Comments

Gays in the US Military

General David Petraeus has admitted to an extramarital affair with Paula Broadwell, an Army reservist who travelled with General Petraeus in Afghanistan when she was writing a book about the general. An FBI investigation had been launched after Mrs Broadwell … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Military, USA | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Where is Charlie Wilson when you need him?

Charlie Wilson was a member of the US House of Representatives who in the 1980s lobbied intensively for arming the Afghan rebels against the Soviet Union. He personally secured a lot of the funding for the Afghan Mujahideen from the … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Cold War, Military, Politics, Syria, USA | Tagged | 1 Comment

Colour-blind in Afghanistan

I don’t understand why the attacks on NATO and ISAF soldiers by members of the Afghan Army are called “green-on-blue” attacks. Given the colour of the uniforms, shouldn’t they be called “blue-on-green” attacks?

Posted in Afghanistan, Military | 6 Comments

The most useful record in the Guinness Book of Records

When I was young, I had a Guinness Book of Records from my mother’s childhood, sometime in the 1950s or 1960s. Back then, it was still an interesting and informative book to read. The records included the highest mountain, the highest building, … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Military | Tagged | 3 Comments

Bücherverbrennungen hier und dort

Diese Woche haben US-Soldaten in Afghanistan aus Versehen ein paar Exemplare des Korans verbrannt, da die in den Gefängnissen dort ausliegenden Koran-Exemplare regelmäßig ausgetauscht werden, damit Gefangene keine Nachrichten darin hinterlassen können. Die Bevölkerung Afghanistans ist aufgebracht, entsetzt und wütend. … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Books, Germany, History, Islam, Politics, Religion | Tagged | 10 Comments

Book Burnings, here and there

This week, US soldiers in Afghanistan accidentally burnt a few copies of the Quran because they regularly change the copies of the Quran that the prisoners there are allowed to use, in order to prevent messages being written into the … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Books, Germany, History, Islam, Politics, Religion | Tagged | 30 Comments

The Afghan Economy in Numbers

Time since the West has been present and active in Afghanistan: 10 years And what have we achieved? GDP per capita (2010): 900 $ Unemployment: 35 % Average hourly wage for graduates (2010): 0.56 $ proportion of the economy that … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Economics, Politics | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

How Osama bin Laden was really found

That the most-wanted terrorist, Osama bin Laden, was finally tracked down after a manhunt that lasted decades has caused admiration for the US intelligence and military (including by me in my post about the killing of Mr bin Laden) as … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Military, Politics, Terrorism | 5 Comments

Election Boycott – What is it good for?

If this headline reminds you of the 1970 song “War” by Edwin Starr, then you already have your answer: “Absolutely nothing!” In pseudo-democratic to openly oppressive countries around the world, opposition parties and candidates regularly face a tough choice: Should … Continue reading

Posted in Afghanistan, Iran, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment