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tv   Book Discussion on An American Bride in Kabul  CSPAN  February 22, 2014 9:00pm-9:55pm EST

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but us. believe if they are more concerned about policies policies, sure. people do try but it could work in a stronger way not just a false promise. >> host: one of president obama is team is income disparity. how does that play? >> i am so glad he recognized that because with presidential politics the idea of hope and possibility is stretched more than randy ideas than in the quality. some people don't want to
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bring up negative things. many americans think we have solved these problems. we hagel have really resolve their problems it is clear empirically but people can convince themselves. with obamacare does not have to run again that not too many eight presidents have brought up race with a quality in and it is tremendous and wonderful to read knowledge we have a dream what can we do to ensure what we thought the jury was freedom and opportunity for anyone even coming from a family it can
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only work for the dream. >> host: mayor jim presidents to have utilize the american dream politically if it is successful besides barack obama what are other examples? >> fdr brought it up and eight tabrets and modest way to get americans through the recession. ronald reagan used it to build a national self-confidence with local conflict in difficulty with attitudes to americans. but i would like to do in the future is to see what people think globally agent as i traveled i don't think we're just exploiting someone or the global
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situation in order to get our wealth which might be the definition of the tree before some. so some countries have a version but also involves so that children read have freedom and opportunity. i did a radio show a couple months ago with people calling in. what i love is that everybody can connect to it. there was a small business owner. they had a different spin. take away the regulations. too many regulations. the immigrant who was a mexican gentleman said it is those regulations that i came here for.
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i want that safety of the government that i can trust. either of how everyone connects with their own history but connects to the larger history of this nation of immigrants. >> host: have we ever lost our faith in the american dream? >> guest: is down now with the mortgage crisis and the great recession the number is trending down a little bit. the young people, they are very helpful and their version is slightly different. i think they connect the dream in the global stage more than any other generation. i also find some of the polls our 70% to show a majority of americans some are 66% so i still say a
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majority but it is slightly smaller. >> host: what do you want people to take away? >> guest: that the dream is a reality but there is some work that needs to be done to keep its strong. americans have not lost hope but they do hold some responsibility not just to themselves but to a larger community to ensure these freedoms that have been fought for are available to everyone. >> host: here is the cover of the book "the american dream in the 21st century" sandra hanson professor at catholic university. one of the coeditors. this is booktv on c-span2.
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>> for the reasons of the camera i cannot look directly at you but have to look this way. i once lived in a harem in afghanistan i love my opening sentence of reminds me of i had a farm in africa.
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it had romances with whole continents we had grand adventures that transcended any single relationship with such adventures can be sometimes fatal. yes, i once lived in a harem in afghanistan but i nearly died there also. a harem simply means women's quarters better forbidden to all men and not related. you cannot leave with the permission without a male escort so you are in a harem as was my fate. why did i write this now? afghanistan and its people seem to have followed me into the future and into the west. then head scarves which i don't suppose in the face masks and the rubber cup
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filled of body bags are here in america on the streets and in the headlines. afghanistan has landed in the west it is still deployed in afghanistan and know i don't think we should be there but ask me about that afterwards. afghanistan is a country where i was once held hostage it is the same country that sheltered in modern where he hatched his 9/11 diabolical plot after saudi arabia and sudan exiled him and now the entire civilian world is held hostage to that brand of jihadist al qaeda style terrorism it is the eerie coincidence to me. my venture lasted more than 50 years. when my afghan husband fled
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just before the soviets invaded he fled and came to america and knocked on my door. i have been criticized for ever speaking to him again but americans and jews have a long tradition into hospitality for immigrants so i did not turn away from him or from his second wife and young children. i recount some of our conversations that took place between 1980 and 2012 in the book as a conversation between east and west. perhaps like so many other jewish i yearned for mystical union between isaac and ishmael. i married him but i kept hoping i was 18 but i was
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not a complete fool. i thought i knew him we never discussed religion and we tried -- prided ourselves to be free thinkers thinkers, artist, he never ever wondered what our life would be like in kabul and never told me that his father had three wives and 21 children and i've would be expected to live with my mother-in-law. and women were still wearing burqa even though reform was under way or i would be pressured to convert to islam. he never mentioned in this. when we landed in a couple -- kabul they took away my passport is a formality we
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will send it to your home but i never saw it again. that becomes an entire chapter in the book. at that moment i was a citizen of no country with no rights and the property of the large polygamist muslim family. i thought this adventure we would dramatically travels through central asia i found myself instead transported back to the tenth century with no passport back to the future. i lived gender apartheid long before the television came to power. booking backhander stand that may have turned me into the feminist that i have become. but such adventures do not
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could cheaply. a westerner does not travel to the wild beast without risking malaria, hepatitis malaria, hepatitis, without risking being kidnapped or held for ransom or sold at auction. many western women infringers flourished and i wrote about their fabulous forgotten stories in the book. in 1846 harry it from the british-born author visited the arab middle east and writes about the heroes of cairo. everywhere they would pity the european women we had to go about traveling and appearing in the streets without properly taken care of. that means watched. and they think that they were neglected as a token of
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the value of which they are held they are not it dwarfed or livid in mind and soul. ironically 19th century haram dwellers could not believe how confined to western visitors were in all their hoops and corsets and bustles they were hanging out and lounging and cool. we were straitlaced and sweating the harem women examined the addresses and corsets. there i was a first generation american scholarship kid living in 6,000 feet above sea level which was once the crossroads of the world's in a palatial home surrounded by snowcapped mountains with
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paganism and hinduism and buddhism once flourished. before the arab invasion resulted in forced conversion to islam like some of the others had afghans were once buddhist and were pagans and hindus and the jews lived among them from the ninth century on or possibly much earlier than that. despite all my considerable sorrows i will never forget the warmth and kindness of my young brothers in lot and sisters of law who understood how unhappy and truly endangered i was. the female servants were very shy and sweet and without malice also sleeping on the floor with no teeth and the wages were pitiful they worked 24/7.
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i found this as shocking as nearly everything else. the fbi and people in general, certainly the men men, they would never meet the women come and they would have a wild sense of humor. they're really very funny. i have been told my father-in-law helped to found the modern baking system of the country. it is true. with the major import/export companies. it was in the hands of the hindus and the jews of that country few overnight were impoverished by royal edict in the early '30's and i only discover that shocking fact is i was researching this book. my husband is as much a
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dreamer as i had a jewish intellectual infidel bride back to a country that made alliances with german nazis and also gave an a safe haven after world war ii. in retrospect i am ashamed i supported such a country that was exotic and beautiful as it is but there was the matter of the burqa. i was terrified when they literally saw women huddled in the back of the bus i thought it was laundry that was moving. i wanted to see this city i ran away. i got on the bus and they were women with a handbag, a baby a shopping bag and
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burqa all the men looked at me because i was naked face. they stared at me so i got off quickly and i began to understand why my afghan family were so afraid of my wild western ways of what we would take for granted to get up to take a walk on the street. forbidden. dangerous. the public space is not meant for women. my afghan family thought might reaction to the burqa was the overreaction. they viewed my reaction as abnormal. inappropriate. i now know the karan mandates modesty that women wear claustrophobic isolation chamber body bags. that is not in the car ran
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with human-rights and women's rights activist this is a terrifying dormant to find yourself in to be on the street was someone there is nothing you can do to rescue her. i am not talking about the hijab you can see their face or features and converse with them and go about their business in the 20th century people were naked faced the twice in afghanistan by royal edict but in egypt and lebanon north africa lebanon jordan barack now covered in darkness now the pendulum
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has swung back to the seventh century it it may be coming our way if we don't know what to recognize. in my lifetime afghanistan has literally turned into a novel even darker and misogynistic been before with the increasing persecution and subordination of muslim women and dissidents, i decided to connect me own five months to this a real lives of the afghan muslim women today. i hope my story will bring muslim feminist and dissidents to closer to american feminism. with nine of the been changed the direction this book would take how could i write about afghanistan and muslim women and intellectuals and
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homosexuals without writing about veggie hottest terrorism in the war against muslim civilians? the perpetual law between this and the end of the shia and thereafter against infidels and the west my views are shared by the muslim and ex muslim dissidents with him my work we are all anti-islamist or anti-sharia we oppose terrorism and gender and religious apartheid individual rights and individual speech and freedom of religion that means separation of religion and state. i have now published the three studies and i am working on a forth. there we're published in the middle east quarterly and
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also submitted affidavits for those who come looking for asylum in america. why did i go to afghanistan? what possibly could have been going on? so to tell you about it now at this moment in history it was kismet written in the stars. my destiny. i would like to end this lecture with a little reading from the book. very brief. what if anything to right out of afghanistan? a country where i once lived and i nearly died. i was there. it remains a part of me. i am now a tiny part of the
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country's history. i will never forget my time there. the natural splendor. this is an accounting of sorts, a young jewish american woman once came to this wondrous country and fled the the hair of life. she finally uncovered the history of what happens to the jews of afghanistan and is long and told their story in order to redeem her soul. a young jewish american woman once loved young muslim afghan man and although they continue to talk to each other through the decades of their lives and although a misogynist misogynist, deceiver coverage reamer living in exile turns out to be one of my views as to adapt to be
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my views. turns out my subsequent lifelong interest of the islamic world is into a writer's treasure. i experience what it was like to live with people who were permanently afraid of what other people might think even more so small town, usa. writing this has put me in touch with the long period feelings i feel especially now he is a character in the pages. we remain connected inner own unspoken ways thank you. [applause] i am ready for questions.
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>> you said you were anti-sharia. is there any reconciliation between sharia or the western world or more moderate views? >> to answers. one is is long has not yet had a reform and is not diversified with of the branches of belief and that may never happen and baby fully under way now. so islam of the seventh century that wish to live with the stoning for adultery, vacating, flogging adultery, vacating, flogging , that interpretation we
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cannot live with that in the west where we have individual rights and beliefs of universal human rights. it is not possible. luckily be vivid the country barely have american law. i know there is some concern may be creeping sharia law making its way but i am not sure that is possible. i don't see american courts saying take fat woman out her family can honor kill her to not marry her first cousin. i don't see that happening here. there are terrible things happening but not through the american court system. by the way the quran does not mandate honor killing either. that is a very tribal custom
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that some hindus as well as muslims practice but only the hindus do that in india. when they come to america or europe they do not bring back custom with them but muslims do. we do not believe in female genital mutilation it is an african practice but many muslims do that especially israel. they do it in america. it is under their radar and is happening here even though we have outlawed it. so the answer to your very important question if we make it our business to know what is happening then we have american remedies to deal with barbarism. >> what is the role of your
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parents when you took off? what were they thinking? >> i met him when i was 18 and a half. my mother knew i was different and a rabil child. i joined a very left zionist group went against the orthodox judea's some of my family and win their rabbi thundered at the you cannot join back communist outfit i joined what was to the laughter was only 10 or 11 so she knew she had a wild child on her hands from early on. [laughter] think they were very quiet. my mother knew i would be back. she did not understand i to
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be trapped derbies sick and nearly died in a pretty care or be buried in the muslim sarah to it -- a cemetery which could have happened very easily. i began hearing about honor killings when i was there. that was not the word used but to this day i would bring this up to my afghan has spent in america in the early 21st century, he would say i have never heard of that. i would say have you heard about this case very high profile in canada where a father and biological mother and biological son conspire to kill the first look wife and three biological daughters all afghan? the highlight of my research
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is an end as the prosecutor in that case and he told me that they relied on research in their prosecution but abdul kareem never heard of this or any other hypo feel -- high-profile honor killing cases because it would be shameful to would it -- admitted. if you think it infidel would be critical or get one up on you or mock you or look down on you you said never heard of it and it doesn't exist. like we handle incest. it did not have been. we did not know about it. it was her fault. it was a long time ago. it does not matter now. people cover their shame. also victimizing the choice.
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>> as a result of your experience what happened with your relationships? >> how has it affected my relationship to judaism? there was no connection it was anti-semitism and then enacted in the '60s on the left i did a jewish feminist rituals through the '80s but only 1988 i went to a conference to win in empowerment when my partner had the idea to pray for the first time ever at the women's section at the western wall. that was the grand moment i
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was asked to open the torah to read from the old testament. i thought i wanted to study it. so i have been doing that since 1989 with much joy and interpreted -- publish the interpretations that took great block coincidence to be with such jacaranda moment. with the things that are happening if you grow up in brooklyn in the early 1940's girls did not have a future with religion at that time. so i went. i did not see a future for
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myself even though i was the smartest in the class. it is interesting i believe very strongly working with religious muslims and i have persuaded apostate muslims to make a resistance movement, then we need all of us. is as important as the right not to be coerced. i don't know if it is direct. when i discovered the shameful history of the jews of is long friday that european holocaust era is what troubled the jews when i began to look into the history of the muslim land against infidels survey
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today against christians. but the middle east all the jews have been chased out. the question if a jewish presence will be allowed in israel as it at all the kings of the balance every day and night. i did not know that then. they had all left by the time i was there. my mother-in-law was sold lead to the and envied and period the and followed me around with terrible accusations and would curse me. there is research has out as bad of a relationship is in cultures and countries like india the gallery burning the bride in the kitchen
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there is a special prison for mother-in-law's that killed daughter-in-law's. [laughter] people say polygamy is great help with child care no, no, no. the bitter rivalries between the women palin comparison to the rivalries between the half siblings' especially the suns to want to inherit and look for the most affectionate attention from the father. it is not a good idea. to expect feminist arguments in favor of it. >> it is such an honor. i was doing research for my
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custody case. so for someone to write about it. i could not put it down on so many levels. [inaudible] i want to ask you about the passport. >> ♪ ♪
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there is more. there is words. you are welcome. she wanted to know the three things that i brought back with me from afghanistan. kind i'd like what i am wearing in to my orange afghan passports that allowed me to return to america i kissed the ground at idlewild literally. i had to stay here because the state department was hounding me because my. >> host: was up i said ibj and myself to the statue of liberty to prove that i am not leaving but it took three and a half years. he you wanted me to come back i could not get divorced. unbelievable.
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then a song one of the servants she and her young girl she was tightly enmeshed in the network of family and where would she be but lost in america? she may have taught me this song but it was important to have a. >> i also grew up in that area in diamondback a couple months ago and the similarity between afghanistan and the separation was so incredible but there were groups of men about-face and it is incredible what happened to
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the neighborhood in 50 years it is certainly not feminized. >> muslim women have to pray at the back of the mosque and can barely see or hear and hasidic women and orthodox women in a similar position in feminists are fighting against this in all religions. it is a hard fight to. it is the symbol of the fight with judaism but i understand what happened to baby the jews got so scared that they retreated into the past thinking that extreme traditionalism would save them or save to deism. it is horrifying. i don't like the heavy unflattering garments that the women have to wear the
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with more -- modern orthodox everybody is decked out. i had one incident in borough park. i went to try a out and i thought i would lose my life because the women were tough. you think of religious women there meek. no. they are aggressive toward other women when it comes to purchasing items that they want. but i share with you even if you have feminist interpretation of the koran and new testament and quran and assuming serious religious authorities that we have a backward drift
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that is very upsetting. >> the local language, did you learn enough of its to converse with other women without an intermediary? about how they felt about their status. >> i have since then but at the time i was 20 and trapped and isolated if i wanted to go out even though i escaped a number of times they understood i would need a chauffeur, a driver, male escort and a female relative
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to help me. i could easily get lost i spoke english and french and the yiddish german. i beg to everyday every day for a teacher i wrote all the words down phonetically i would point down and write but i did not get the tudor. on the other hand, when i was near death that i had hepatitis and i beg for a doctor it took a long time for me to get one. that that is how a female life is held. if i had a slight fever with a jewish mother we would be in the emergency room. here is 106.
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she will live or die. finally and said she is nervous like the other foreigners. so i sought incredible things have wanted to start visiting hospitals which are in terrible shape now if not for western intervention which by the way remember i said before we should not be there? with boots on the ground every shelter for battered women every ripe -- rape crisis center will be:the do we want to expend more blood going up against tribalism and barbarism where it seems we cannot prevail.
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do we pull out knowing full well what will happen to the children and women? this is the question for america to grapple with. but really it is pakistan that gave us taliban. to get rid of them thought we need to get rid of pakistan which is a nuclear allies now we have terrible news they will pass a new law in afghanistan which means no family member can testify against another family member because that would be bad for the family. , that tells us if a girl finally says they cut off my nose or ears and torture me
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my mother-in-law beats me every day, she will not have any possibility of access for a hearing because that would be bad for the family life. of this is an all the papers this past weekend. >> howdy resolve this crisis short of perpetual war? for london the other side of the world or another culture ? are we really at a stage we can write about these things but we have no resolution. >> stewart wrote an extraordinary book he you
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walked conflict in the dead of winter to do in a venture like nobody else can. he said we are not morally obligated. we would like to think every opportunity is we can fix it to make a better and heal the world and use reason but the truth we don't want to except is that approach, a humanitarian approach may not work. it did not work with hitler or his allies in japan. the muslims who are trapped and is keeping want support with the embrace of human
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rights and gay and women's rights and freedom of religion. that is what we need to offer to those who are here as opposed to say it is their custom to drape their women in the bet sheet because it is their religious stories but they beat her because she does not want to marry the first cousin and she is 12? we cannot pry into private family matters. and every honor killing in america and canada has had social workers who were remiss in did not believe the family would kill a daughter. honor killing thing is not like domestic violence is the conspiracy of the family against a gambrel. to the smallest infraction i
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mean conspiracy a mother, father, sister, brot her, and at, and they increasingly have been tried and convicted in europe. so what we can do here is applied what is good and right and lawful and legal here for whoever is here. that will keep us very busy. >> what kind of reception did you get from your family when you made it back to the states? >> i weighed 90 pounds from the very sick from a very jaundiced in very pregnant.
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and i was ready to walk out of afghanistan to follow the nomad although i rejected that it is the scene because they would just kidnapped me and keep me i had nothing of value. so i knew if anyone knew i was pregnant nobody would let me these so when i came here i called from the airport they said we're on our way. my mother and father both rest in peace came to get me. i went back to college i had one semester left. had no intention not to finish my dream is it would be very sophisticated we would go to i wray and thin
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in europe it was very much he was more like omar sharif when i came back i could not tell anybody what happened because when i tried to they did not understand or believe me. i would say slavery. servants treated like slaves. the women had no value. a woman was screaming and then it turned out her husband would come and fight with the doctor in charge because the wife died the baby was about to die the father did not want to pay for nothing so he has to
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take new money to get another wife so why was the doctor demanding payment? i had my afghan has been translate for me. not a single word this is terrible, how could this happen? no. the purchase price of the new bride. so i understood for i had been so i tried to tell a philosophy professor. i am glad to be back. i have been to hell and back. i told him gave little bit if famous man. he said you should have an affair. peeve was an idiot. [laughter] the conversation that i needed to have is only
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possible in the 21st century the understanding and comprehension now with the muslim dissidents they get what i am saying. i don't have to persuade them. they ask me why more academics and feminist especially don't understand it instead to say everything is culturally relative or multicultural you are free to judge another culture? those critics know full well that america is a bad country we were racist we had slavery we were colonialist and imperialists but islam has a long history of imperialism anti-black racism and slavery.
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gender and religious apartheid but nobody here says we all have blood on our hands may be as long is not here. maybe the tradition has been dangerous maybe it is a dangerous tradition instead we say we are so guilty and so persuaded by works we aren't guilty what matters that the human rights i believe that is what we have to focus on. >> we keep hearing about sunii and shia the you have not mentioned afghanistan.
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>> said portia are in persia which is in perpetual civil war between the shia and soon it -- sunii. now the gulf states are trying to be encompassed including saudi arabia. it is sunii and those in afghanistan are sunii as well. i did not know that at the time i did not know that my afghan has been was part of the of largest historically most dominant tribe it is basically the country is not an is an inhospitable treacherous, a dangerous people live in small villages isolated one from
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another and afghanistan now is the largest opium producer and the of war lords are making a lot of money. to cultivate the poppies to find its way to the west, of the bite it in and we are hooked on it. it is a complicated history again not that i ever discussed during their courtship and romance with my afghan husband. i have learned it by reading many, many books and by talking to people.


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