Title: Way to Kabul
Author: Sayed Sadat
About this title.
This work of non-fiction is Sayed’s memoir of his journey back to Afghanistan during the oppressive rule of the Taliban. Living in Pakistan as refugees, Sayed is a humble family man working for the UN as a driver and earning a good income compared to others. Still, what he witnesses on a daily basis is horrific, as people struggle to survive in a country that has lost itself to constant brutality. On his search to find his parents he luckily escapes jail for not having the correct ID and a long enough beard. This is the story of a man struggling to come to terms with the horrors happening in the land of his birth. This is a challenging and thought-provoking read that tells it like it is and could disturb some readers. The various settings and movements from one to the other maintain the pace of the story and the author captures the true-life situations of good people living in constant fear. This is a work of considerable scope that is a very worthwhile, eye-opening read from start to finish.
Oliver Stone: ‘Petraeus is no hero’ – Talk to Al Jazeera – Al Jazeera English.
|Talk to Al Jazeera
Oliver Stone: ‘Petraeus is no hero’
American filmmaker and critic of the US war machine says the retired general is not worthy of unreserved support.
|In the US, former top general, David Petraeus, resigned from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) – the media quickly calling it a fall from grace.
This happened just days after the re-election of President Barack Obama, a victory that his supporters call a clear mandate from the American people.
But for Oliver Stone, the Hollywood director, who for years has been obsessing about the role of the military in American society – neither Petraeus nor President Obama are worthy of unreserved support.
In fact, he sees big problems ahead for the US and its president.
Stone has problems with Obama’s foreign policy, his reluctance to reverse George W Bush’s strategies such as the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, the country’s race to militarise space and attempts to buy influence around the world.
The celebrated director thinks Petraeus should have been removed a long time ago, that he “screwed up” in Iraq, and was never a “hero”, the military and the media made him out to be.
“The bigger issue is [not the sex scandal] but what he has done in Afghanistan and Iraq and that is the primary issue that the media should concentrate on – which they haven’t,” says Stone. “They have treated him as a hero and they don’t question his record and I think this is what’s most important and it’s been lost in this typical sex scandal, British tabloid kind-of-thing.
“I feel sorry that he should go down for that, I think that he should go down for the truth which is that he screwed it up.”
On this episode of Talk to Al Jazeera, Rosalind Jordan has a conversation with Oliver Stone about his scathing and sobering analysis of where the US has been and where it is going.
Way to Kabul, Non-fiction | The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui.
Way to Kabul, Nonfiction
There was nice and spectacular scenery everywhere and ahead of this town, the highway passes through a very high mountain pass and when the bus is going through these narrow roads through the narrow valleys, one can feel the cool breeze.
As we got to the top, there was another check post entering once again to the government-controlled town called Kohat a small city just about 30-40km to our first destination Hango. We arrived soon around noon to Hango and we came off the bus. Then Mamriz Khan said, “Since we still have to travel another 40-50km to his village, it will take longer because the roads there are not in good condition, and also passing through another very high and very dangerous mountain passing point, it would be better to have lunch here somewhere in a local restaurant because the foods available on the way after this town is not appropriate to eat at all.”
I knew Hango very well because I lived there once for a few months with Dad in the early 80s and still there have been no major changes since then. I also knew a few people there, especially a Malik Sahib who was lived there and he knew about Afghanistan very well because he was living there before the communist revolution took place for so many years and was about 70 yrs of age.
He smoked Hashish sometimes for fun and I also had a puff or two for relaxation and the stress of life that I was going through; like being away from the family and friends and living alone with 16 my Dad for more than four years, but away from the eyes of Dad and he never ever knew or found that I was smoking that.
Pakistan ‘to pay cash to poor to send kids to school’
Malala Yousafzai’s family say she has been humbled by the outflow of support
Families of three million of Pakistan’s poorest children will get cash sums if their child attends school, in a scheme announced ahead of a day of action for a schoolgirl shot by the Taliban. Under the scheme, funded by the World Bank and UK, families would reportedly get $2 a month per child in school.
The news came as the UN held “Malala Day”, in the name of Malala Yousufzai, 15, a Pakistani education campaigner. She is recovering in the UK after she and two others were shot in October. Saturday has been declared a global day of action in Malala’s nameaimed at getting school places for 32 millions girls around the world who are not attending classes.
The Waseela-e-Taleem programme was announced in Islamabad by Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and special UN envoy for global education, Gordon Brown. “Malala’s dreams represent what is best about Pakistan,” said Mr Brown, the former UK prime minister. The initiative aims to enrol three million of the poorest children in education in the next four years and, according to Reuters, will see poor families receive $2 a month per child in primary school.
Events are being held in Pakistan to mark “Malala Day”
The cash will be distributed through the government’s Benazir Income Support Programme, designed to give small cash payments to needy families. Those in the programme already receive $10 a month for basic expenditure, Reuters reported. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of people around the world have signed an online petition calling for Malala to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
The UK government has also been urged to back the campaign, with advocates saying she represents those denied an education. Doctors in the UK city of Birmingham, where Malala is being treated, say she is making progress. She and two other schoolgirls were attacked as they returned home from school in Mingora in the Swat Valley in north-west Pakistan on 9 October. The gunman who boarded the van in which she was travelling asked for her by name before firing three shots at her. In early 2009 she wrote an anonymous diary for BBC Urdu about life under the Taliban, who had banned all girls in her area from attending school.
Thousands call for Nobel peace prize for Malala Yousafzai
Politicians urged to back nomination of 15-year-old girl shot by Taliban while campaigning for girls’ education in Pakistan
Friday 9 November 2012 07.54 GMT
Malala Yousafzai was attacked last month with two other girls while travelling home from school in the Swat Valley. Photograph: Queen Elizabeth Hospital/PA
Thousands of people have called for a Nobel peace prize for Malala Yousafzai, the 15-year-old who was shot by the Taliban while campaigning for girls’ education in Pakistan.
Malala has the support of more than 60,000 people backing a petition to nominate her for the prestigious award.
The call came ahead of Saturday’s global day of action marking one month since Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban. In the UK, Shahida Choudhary is campaigning for the prime minister and prominent politicians to write to the Nobel committee to recommend Malala. Choudhary said: “Malala doesn’t just represent one young woman, she speaks out for all those who are denied an education purely on the basis of their gender. “There are girls like Malala in the UK and across the world. I was one of them. ”I started this petition because a Nobel peace prize for Malala will send a clear message that the world is watching and will support those who stand up for the right of girls to get an education.”
Choudhary was taken out of school in the UK aged 16 and forced into a marriage in Pakistan. She escaped back to the UK, returned to education aged 28, and runs a network in Birmingham to support women in similar situations.
Malala, was attacked last month with two other girls while travelling home from school in the Swat Valley. The gunman who boarded the van in which she was travelling asked for her by name before firing three shots at her.
In early 2009, Malala wrote an anonymous blog about life under the Taliban, who had banned all girls in her area from attending school. The global petition to have Malala nominated, on Change.org, was started in Canada by Tarek Fatah, a writer and broadcaster. Malala’s nomination has won the backing of Canada’s four largest political parties and has been supported in other countries including France and Spain.
Nobel committee rules states that members of national assemblies and governments are able to make nominations for the prize. Nominations close in February.
zeus-publications.com - It was the end of February and I had been invited to a wedding reception by one of my Pakistani friends named Mamriz Khan, a kind young man but very stern Pashton as called Zigh Ghairati Pakhton in…
As refugees living for decades in Pakistan, life for Sayed, his family and millions of other Afghanis is not easy.
Constantly harassed by the police and the authorities and suffering with the heat, pollution, and over-crowdedness these displaced people live their lives as best they can. The fact that they can live their lives is a miracle.
Compared with the even harsher conditions of Afghanistan their life in Pakistan is paradise. This is the story of Sayed’s journey back to Afghanistan during the oppressive rule of the Taliban. His aim is to see his parents but instead he is shocked at the situation he finds in his home country and it is only through luck that he escapes punishment or jail for not having the proper ID or a long enough beard.
For the Afghanis of that time, life under the Taliban is horrific – but no more horrific than it had been under the rule of Russia and later the Warlords. Is Afghanistan destined to live in perpetual hell? Rather than saving Afghanistan from the continual torture of war and violent leadership, rule by the Taliban means more stripping away of personal freedoms and vindictive punishments meted out by the ‘soldiers of God’. The general insanity of a country that has lost itself to the brutality of these people and those who preceded them, people who denounce modernity but rule by the power of modern guns, is witnessed by Sayed as he struggles to come to terms with the horrors occurring in the land of his birth.