Afghanistan Beyond the Narratives of Insiders

They're Footnotes, Jack

Army paratroopers assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division prepare to board an Air Force C-17 at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 30, 2021. Photo: US Army, Master Sgt. Alexander Burnett.

The hot sun beat against the building’s modernist glass windows. Inside, in a spacious conference room that smelt like burnt coffee in plastic cups, a man angrily yelled that there was no alternative to a centralized Afghan presidential system and that Afghan would never get anywhere with a reliance on foreign aid. He was a leading voice behind giving Afghanistan foreign aid for twenty years.

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Julia Schiwal is a historian of Afghanistan and a specialist on Gender and Sexual Minorities in the region.  She lives in Washington, D.C.

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