What an unbelievable mess we've made of that suffering country.
In Anthony Shadid's Night Draws Near, he reports that after the U.S. invasion, Iraqis simply couldn't understand how the apparently all powerful United States, which had so easily ended Saddam Hussein's dictatorship, could fail to prevent looting, establish security, and restore some kind of government. They'd seen coups and wars before, but always some authority reestablished itself. And that was three years ago.
Sarah Chayes in Kandahar, dressed in Afghan's men's clothes, which she has discovered give her the best chance to move about without drawing a crowd, though boys flock to her. Transom Review photo.
Meanwhile, something of the same phenomenon is happening around Kandahar in Afghanistan, according to former NPR correspondent Sarah Chayes who is working for a cooperative business and has lived in the area since 2001. The U.S. refuses to admit that the Taliban is organizing a revolt from neighboring Pakistan and attributes the violence that wracks southern Afghanistan to Al Quaeda. Locals know better but are mystified by official denials. So they have their own explanation:
Read all of Chayes article. Afghanistan is going the way of Iraq, with less media scrutiny.