Kabul and Modernity: An Ugly Contrast

Besides that this photo tells thousands words in its context, like how artless and ugly this glass building looks among muddy houses in the ruins of civil war, it also shows a rigid dichotomy between Afghan society and modernity. Afghans fantasize modernity and they imitate it badly and ineptly, but I assume that is how a country should start rebuilding itself and strive for conformity with its status quo. (more…)

The Century Old Instant Camera in Afghanistan

Afghanistan is one of the last places on earth where photographers used a simple type of instant camera called the Kamer-e Fawri for means of making a living. (more…)

Hillside Snow Slide in Afghanistan

It is winter in Afghanistan and among cock fighting, dog fighting and numerous other animal fighting, young Afghans venture to slide their arse in the snow as part of their winter game. This kind of snowboarding in Farsi is called Yakh Malah, or, Yakh Lakhshak, which literally means sliding on ice.

Kabul’s Children Street Workers

Afghanistan has been through decades of conflicts and it became one of the most dangerous places in the world for children and their mothers to live. (more…)

Afghanistan’s Drug addicts: A Sore Wound

Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has released a report today that United States has spent approximately $7.6 billion on counternarcotics efforts in Afghanistan. (more…)

Amulets that Charm Afghans

One of the most magical objects that has been used across ages is amulet. Amulets are worn upon the person, animal or hung on objects to protect from evil. (more…)

The deprived children who want a change

These children are coming from the most deprived background, from a Hazara ethnic group in Afghanistan, who once were socially rejected due to their faith and ethnicity. They have been an outcast of Afghanistan, and have been singled out as outsiders, heretics, and ugly because of their Asiatic looks. (more…)

Bakery in Kabul

This is a local bakery in Kabul suburb. In Farsi, the bakery is called “Nanwayee,” which means a place where bread is available.

Ashura, the tenth and the last day of Shia religious carnival

Ashura, the 10th of Muharram is a holy day for Muslims and especial day for Shi’a. This day is a remarkable day of Muharram in Islamic calendar, the day of mourning for the martyrdom of Hussian the son Ali and the grandson of Muhammad in the battle of Karbala in the year 61 (AD 680). (more…)

Moharram, a Shia bloody ritual

Self-flagellation and cutting heads with swords are a truly barbaric practice that once used to be famous in Iran under the Qajar Dynasty but later banned by the Shah in the 20th century.

Blades that bleed in the dawn of Ashura

These knife-covered chains are produced in Kabul and widely distributed among young Shiite Hazaras in major cities, especially the capital, Kabul. (more…)

Bathed in their blood for cleansing

Ashura, the 10th of Muharram is a holy day for Muslims and especial day for Shi’a. This day is a remarkable day of Muharram in Islamic calendar, the day of mourning for the martyrdom of Hussian the son Ali and the grandson of Muhammad in the battle of Karbala in the year 61 (AD 680). (more…)

Self-flagellation ritual

Ashura, the 10th of Muharram is a holy day for Muslims and especial day for Shi’a. This day is a remarkable day of Muharram in Islamic calendar, the day of mourning for the martyrdom of Hussian the son Ali and the grandson of Muhammad in the battle of Karbala in the year 61 (AD 680). (more…)

Mortification of the flesh for sanctifying the body

Ashura, the 10th of Muharram is a holy day for Muslims and especial day for Shi’a. This day is a remarkable day of Muharram in Islamic calendar, the day of mourning for the martyrdom of Hussian the son Ali and the grandson of Muhammad in the battle of Karbala in the year 61 (AD 680). (more…)

Muharram, the month of mourning for Shia Hazaras

Traditionally, it is Mullah’s job to recite the elegy of Imam Hussein who was killed 1300 years ago in battle of Karbala, but in this local mosque in Shiite community in west Kabul, a literate person took the job by delivering an elegy to the mourners.

The depiction of Imam Hussein in pictorial form

The depiction of Hussein in pictorial form has widely circulated in areas inhabited by Shiite Hazaras. In recent years this form of elegy has become a lucrative business for publishing company based in Iran. (more…)

Muharram arrives in Kabul

Afghanistan’s Shiite Hazaras are preparing for Muharram by erecting giant gates ornamented with black cloth and banners that are donated by Iran. (more…)

Afghanistan’s opium production peaks

Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has released a report today that United States has spent approximately $7.6 billion on counternarcotics efforts in Afghanistan. (more…)

Afghanistan’s drug addiction: a growing burden

Afghanistan is the world’s largest producer and cultivator of opium poppies; it produces almost three quarters of the world’s illicit opium. While a significant amount of the opium produced in Afghanistan is trafficked out of the country, in 2009 it was estimated that almost 10 per cent of Afghans aged between 15 and 64 were drug users. Read a full report on UN report.

The awful cost of heroin dependence in Afghanistan

A study published last week adds to a growing body of research showing that Afghanistan also has a high rate of drug usage — about 5.1 percent, or 1 in 20 people. Opioids and cannabis were the most popular. Read more