A colonial algomation of Pashto-Persian, Turkic, and Mongol ethnic groups into one great buffer state durring the "Great Game" for influence between Britain (British India) and Imperial Russia durring the nineteenth century. Afghans are warriors if nothing else, they were the only actual resistance to the Mongol hordes, out-lasting Persian armies from the west and scaring off the British and Russians (later demolishing the Soviets).
Before the Soviet invasion, Afghanistan was a stop-over on the great Asian back-packing trails, from Istanbul to Katmandhu or Bangkok. It was known for fascinating music, awsome food, and even better hashish. How things change.
After the Soviet invasion, the great powers used Afghanistan as a much-larger version of Lebanon: to fight an international war using third party proxies. The Mujahhadddin were the fighting for America with Chinese-supplied weapons and based out of Pakistan, while the Soviets rained down hell from their jets flying out of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Every major power armed someone basically.
Today, Afghanistan is at the center of a corporate power-play to set up for a new century of Central Asian gas from the Caspian basin, evident in the selection of a former Unical employee (Mohammed Karzai) as "President". Taliban elements remain in the mountains, but Bin Laden's long gone.
Also a song by Farhad Darya.
Afghanistan's such a cool place, too bad the country fell to hell.
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