afghan american

There is only one sin. And that is theft… when you tell a lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth.
— 

Khaled Hosseini (1965 to present), Afghan-born American novelist and physician. He was born in Kabul, Afghanistan. His father worked as a diplomat, and when Hosseini was 11 years old, the family moved to France; four years later, they applied for asylum in the United States, where he later became a citizen. Hosseini did not return to Afghanistan until 2001 at the age of 36, where he “felt like a tourist in [his] own country”.  In interviews about the experience, he admitted to sometimes feeling survivor’s guilt for having been able to leave the country before the Soviet invasion and subsequent wars. 

After graduating from college and medical school, he worked as a doctor in California, an occupation that he likened to “an arranged marriage.”  He has published three novels, most notably his 2003 debut The Kite Runner. His three novels all are at least partially set in Afghanistan, and feature an Afghan as the protagonist.  Besides his medical career and his writing, Hosseini has also served as UNHCR representative to Afghanistan.

AFGHANISTAN. Kandahar Province. December 17, 2011. U.S. Army Sgt. Lidya Admounabdfany writes down information from a local woman at the Woman’s Centre near the Zhari District Centre outside of Forward Operating Base Pasab. Admounabdfany was born in Baghdad, Iraq, in 1990, living through the 2003 U.S. invasion, hiding in a basement with her family. Her mother, a widow who spoke some English, met and married an American security adviser and the whole family soon moved to Oklahoma City. When she was 17, she graduated High School and enrolled in the U.S. Army, hoping to go to Iraq. As the wars changed priorities, Admounabdfany ended up learning Dari and Pashto, and was deployed to Afghanistan as a member of 3rd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division’s Female Engagement Team.

Photograph: Spc. Kristina Truluck/U.S. Army

Chinese American... and Afghan American.

It’s much easier for me to identify with my Chinese side more than my Afghan side. I have an amazing Asian American community at school - we make up around 40% of the school’s population (keeping mindful that the term ‘Asian’ encompasses Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Laotian, Mien, Filipin@, Taiwanese, Thai, Tibetian, etc. and we are a bunch of different ethnic groups that are grouped together because we all look somewhat alike to white people). I’m even studying Asian American studies because my school has a big department of it and really good professors. It’s easier for me to identify as Asian American because that identification is my ticket into most of my social circles.

But what about my other half? I know almost nothing about Afghanistan or the Middle East, unless you count a high school class on 'The Middle East’ that didn’t count Afghanistan as part of it. I know almost nothing of the plights of Afghans because my Afghan family doesn’t talk about it. I try reading pieces by people on Tumblr under the “Afghan” or “Afghanistan” tag, but all I find are rugs or pictures of the war. “Afghan American” has like three posts. I feel so ignorant about my father’s culture; half of my culture; half of myself.

I’m so happy to identify as Asian American and try to use my voice to speak out, after having been silenced as a people for so long. But I think my Afghan voice may be getting lost… and silenced, just like my Afghan family’s voice was silenced. Just like other Afghan American’s voices are getting silenced.

And the thing that bothers me the most in my privileged place is when filling out an application, one of the options is Caucasian (including Middle Eastern). Like, what, did they just erase our entire history and group us together with white people who have white privilege? Did they just give us white privilege on paper regardless of the fact that we are one of the most oppressed racial groups in America in 2012?

Sometimes I don’t even bother identifying myself as Middle Eastern. It’s all part of Asia, right? I can just clump it together, right? I need to start remembering that my two cultures are very different and the privileges and oppressions that come with each are very different. I realize that my voice is unique, as it comes from a Chinese-Afghan-American woman and I need to take ownership of that.

Experiencial design

Week 7, lecture 5

In this week’s lecture, we looked at food and design as an experience. Amongst the various work of artists and designers Andy showed us, I particularly liked that of Afghan-American artist Behnaz Babazadeh in her ‘Candy Burqa’ series. In the photographic work, Babazadeh creates burqas out of confectionary items to relate the work back to her own memories of arriving in America mixed with her own religion.

“This series explores the use of materials found in the candy aisle as a means connect the viewer with a memory that the food inspires, rather than the over used symbol of women’s oppression in Afghanistan, the Burka.”


The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.

The Kite Runner is the first novel by Afghan-American author Khaled Hosseini.
Published in 2003 by Riverhead Books, it tells the story of Amir, a young boy from the Wazir Akbar Khan district of Kabul, whose closest friend is Hassan, his father’s young Hazara servant.

Summary:

Amir recalls an event that happened twenty-six years before, when he was still a boy in Afghanistan, and says that that made him who he is. Before the event, he lives in a nice home in Kabul, Afghanistan, with Baba, his father. They have two servants, Ali and his son, Hassan, who are Hazaras, an ethnic minority. Baba’s close friend, Rahim Khan, is also around often. When Afghanistan’s king is overthrown, things begin to change. One day, Amir and Hassan are playing when they run into three boys, Assef, Wali, and Kamal. Assef threatens to beat up Amir for hanging around with a Hazara, but Hassan uses his slingshot to stop Assef.

The story skips to winter, when the kite-fighting tournament occurs. Boys cover their kite strings in glass and battle to see who can sever the string of the opposing kite. When a kite loses, boys chase and retrieve it, called kite running. When Amir wins the tournament, Hassan sets off to run the losing kite. Amir looks for him and finds Hassan trapped at the end of an alley, pinned with his pants down. Wali and Kamal hold him, and Assef rapes him. Amir runs away, and when Hassan appears with the kite, Amir pretends he doesn’t know what happened. Afterward, Amir and Hassan drift apart. Amir, who is racked by guilt, decides either he or Hassan must leave. He stuffs money and a watch under Hassan’s pillow and tells Baba that Hassan stole it. When Baba confronts them, Hassan admits to it, though he didn’t do it. Shortly after, Ali and Hassan move away.The story jumps to March 1981. Baba and Amir are in the back of a truck as they escape from Kabul, which was invaded by the Soviets and has become a war-zone. After a hellish journey, they make it to Pakistan. Two years later, Baba and Amir live in Fremont, California. While Baba works at a gas station, Amir finishes high school and goes to college. Baba and Amir sell things at a flea market on Sundays, and Baba sees an old friend, General Taheri. Amir notices General Taheri’s daughter, Soraya. When Amir finally speaks to her, General Taheri catches him and tells him there is a proper way to do things. Not long after, Baba is diagnosed with lung cancer. Amir asks Baba if he will get General Taheri’s consent for Amir to marry Soraya. General Taheri accepts the proposal. They hold the wedding quickly because of Baba’s health, and Baba dies a month later. Amir and Soraya try unsuccessfully to have a baby while Amir works on his writing career.
Amir gets a call from Rahim Khan. Rahim Khan is sick and wants Amir to see him in Pakistan. Amir meets him a week later, and Rahim Khan tells Amir about the devastation in Kabul. He says things only got worse after the Soviets were forced out. Now the Taliban rule by violence. He has a favor to ask of Amir, but first he needs to tell him about Hassan. When Baba and Amir left Afghanistan, Rahim Khan watched their house. Out of loneliness and because he was getting older, he decided to find Hassan. He convinced Hassan and Hassan’s wife, Farzana, to come back to Kabul with him. Farzana and Hassan eventually had a little boy, Sohrab. A few years later Rahim Khan went to Pakistan for medical treatment, but he received a call from a neighbor in Kabul. The Taliban went to Baba’s house and shot Hassan and Farzana and sent Sohrab to an orphanage.Rahim Khan wants Amir to go to Kabul and bring Sohrab back to Pakistan, where a couple lives that will take care of him. He tells Amir that Baba was Hassan’s father, and Amir agrees to do it. In Afghanistan, Amir finds the orphanage where Sohrab is supposed to be, but he is not there. The orphanage director says a Taliban official took Sohrab a month earlier. If Amir wants to find the official, he will be at the soccer stadium during the game the next day. Amir goes to the game, and at half-time, the Taliban put a man and a woman in holes in the ground and the official Amir is looking for stones them to death. Through one of the Taliban guards, Amir sets up a meeting with the official.When they meet, Amir tells the official he is looking for a boy, Sohrab, and the official tells the guards to bring the boy in. Sohrab is wearing a blue silk outfit and mascara, making him appear more feminine and suggesting that the men sexually abuse him. The official says something Amir recognizes, and suddenly Amir realizes the official is Assef. Assef says he wants to settle some unfinished business. He beats Amir with brass knuckles, breaking Amir’s ribs and splitting his lip. Sohrab threatens Assef with his slingshot, and when Assef lunges at him, Sohrab shoots him in the eye, allowing Amir and Sohrab to escape. As Amir recovers in the hospital, he finds out there never was a couple that could care for Sohrab. Amir asks Sohrab to live with him in the U.S., and Sohrab accepts.The adoption officials tell Amir that adopting Sohrab will be impossible since he can’t prove Sohrab’s parents are dead, and Amir tells Sohrab he may have to go back to an orphanage. Amir and Soraya figure out a way to get Sohrab to the U.S., but before they can tell Sohrab, Sohrab tries to kill himself. He lives, but he stops speaking entirely. Even after they bring Sohrab to California, Sohrab remains withdrawn. One day, they go to a park with other Afghans. People are flying kites. Amir buys one and gets Sohrab to fly it with him. They spot another kite and battle it. Using one of Hassan’s favorite tricks, they win. Sohrab smiles, and as the losing kite flies loose, Amir sets off to run it for Sohrab.

4

The Myths of French Involvement during the American Revolution

Americans love to rag on the French, a pastime which has unfortunately lead to a number of myths surrounding the American Revolution.  According to the prevailing myth, France was America’s ally, but the French didn’t really do anything until the last battle of the war, the Battle of Yorktown in 1781.  In reality, we owe a lot to the French, whose aid during the war allowed the colonies to survive the onslaught of the British Army.  After all the French supplied the Continental Army with 90% of its gunpowder, as well as tens of thousands of muskets, hundreds of cannon, tens of thousands of pairs of uniforms and boots, and 1.3 billion livres in financial support. Hundreds of military officers were also sent by the French king to serve as military advisers for the Continental Army. One of the most famous of all Frenchmen to serve in the Continental Army was the Marquis de Lafayette, who would practically serve as the right hand of Gen. Washington throughout the war

It would be fair to say that the American Revolution was a French proxy war against the British much as the the Soviet Afghan War was an American proxy war against the Soviet Union. However, unlike the Soviet Afghan War, the French actually did fight against the British with boots on the ground.  Throughout the high seas French naval ships and privateers clashed against the Royal Navy.  French forces also conducted raids across the British Empire, striking targets in the Caribbean, North American, Africa, and India.  In India, the French allied with the Kingdom of Mysore with the goal of ejecting the British from the Indian subcontinent.  The subsequent conflict was extremely savage and bloody leading to tens of thousands of British casualties.  Moreover, the French formed an alliance with Spain, the Netherlands, and the Austrian Empire with the intent of invading Britain itself.  As a result of France’s military efforts and diplomatic efforts, Britain was forced to spread her military thin, often pulling men and resources away from the Revolution in order to defend the rest of her empire.

Perhaps the biggest and most egregious whopper of them all is the myth that the French never sent military aid until the last battle of the war. In fact, the first French forces to step foot in the colonies did so on July 22nd, 1778, about six months after France had formally recognized the United States and declared war on Britain.  The first French force consisted of 5,000 infantry, who combined with 5,000 American troops and militia in an attempt to force the British out of Newport, Rhode Island.  While the siege of Newport failed, news of a French force sailing from Europe to New England was one of the reasons why British commander Gen. Clinton chose to abandon his occupation of Philadelphia, as a French landing in New England would threaten his supply lines through New York City. A year later, the British withdrew from Newport, as a larger force of 6,000 French troops arrived under the command of Comte de Rochambeau. In 1779 another 3,000 French troops and 500 Haitian volunteers landed in Georgia to the aid of 2,000 American troops intent on capturing Savannah from the British.  Unfortunately, the Siege of Savannah failed as British defenses were strongly built and well defended.

The most famous battle involving the French was the Siege of Yorktown, where 8,000 French infantry, 8,000 American infantry, 3,000 militia, and the French Navy surrounded British Gen. Cornwallis’ army at Yorktown, VA. While Yorktown signaled the end of major combat operations for the Americans with the exception of a few small skirmishes, the blood feud between France and Britain was far from over, and would continue until the signing of the Treaty of Paris in 1783.  Believe it or not, the last battle of the American Revolution was not fought in America, but in India, where British, French, and Mysorean forces clashed at the Battle of Cuddalore.

The French involvement in the American Revolution would restore France’s prestige in Europe, something severely lacking after their disastrous defeat during the Seven Years War/French and Indian War.  However, the war turned out none to good for France.  While the French did much to aide the Americans during the Revolution, ironically it would be Britain that would become America’s number one trading partner in the late 18th and early 19th century.  The war also threw France into debt at the tune of a whopping 3.3 billion livres, certainly not a small sum.  Such an enormous debt would send France into financial disaster, a contributing factor in the coming French Revolution.

anonymous asked:

If you don't mind me asking, what reylo fics are you currently reading?

Running through my subscriptions on AO3 real quick (not sure of everyone’s Tumblr URLs so just going with AO3 pseuds): 

A Dream in Twofold by TearoomSaloon

  • An excellent take on the “Rey is Ren’s apprentice” trope. Snoke is genuinely terrifying and the slow burn and Kylo’s conflict are both delicious. 

A Proper Education by SouthSideStory

  • Smut. It’s smut. Kylo-defected-to-the-Resistance smut. 

Amygdala by nerdherderette

  • A LOT of Reylo fics have Kylo as a doctor/surgeon in a modern AU, but I like the way this one approaches it, with Rey doing her residency next to him. It’s almost like a Grey’s Anatomy take on the ship, but done very, very well, which is good since I’ve never liked Grey’s.

Charcoal by luvkurai

  • I think most people know this one. Unstable/obsessive artist!Kylo. Badass engineering student/art enthusiast Rey. It’s unsettling but you just can’t look away.

Children of Violence by america_oreosandkitkats

  • Set against the backdrop of the Soviet-Afghan war in which American Kylo has defected to the Soviet Union. Very mysterious with heavy political intrigue and well-done modern-historical AU.  

Chivalry Isn’t Dead, It Just Joined the Dark Side by frackin_sweet and hato

  • This one is fun. Rey is a drifter who ends up catching a job at a Renaissance Faire, where she also ends up working with renowned actor, stage combat vet, and SERIOUS pain in the ass Kylo Ren, whose family owns the damn thing. The entire cast is well-represented and the humor is on-point. Definitely a good chaser for the heaviness of most Reylo fics.

Errant by pontmercy44 

  • The last chapter of this one just made me REALLY mad and upset so I’m now watching it warily, but until then, it was one of my favorites (and probably will be again… hopefully… please). Rey is the victim of a trafficking ring who witnesses a murder and ends up in the ER attended by Snoke’s personal physician, Kylo. It’s very, very heavy in places and you just want to give Rey a hug, but there are some excellent scenes with Han and Leia and Kylo’s attempts to slot back into his family with Rey in tow. Again, it just took a really, really sharp turn that I’m not too sure about yet, but I’m reccing it for now because it was amazing up until that point.

Ja’ak by Trebia 

  • Dark!Reylo written by the author of “Forms”. You know why I’m reading this. You know why all of you should be reading this. 

Like Young Gods by diasterisms 

  • Probably the best and most comprehensive Reylo(ish) Jedi Academy AU I’ve seen thus far. This could be an EU novel with these characters. 

Nine Lives by on_my_toes

  • I still haven’t figured out if I love or hate this fic. On the one hand, some of the best and most poignant angst you’ll see in a modern AU in this fandom. On the other… it hurts. It really, really hurts. In so many ways. It’s like watching two of your friends who are in love with each other but have serious issues and keep throwing up giant barriers and creating issues so they’ll never get together, and there’s nothing you can do about it. I’m just hoping that all of the pain is worth it as the fic draws to a close.

Opia by t0bemadeofglass

  • Serial killer/cop AU with a ton of dark mystery and excellent writing. I’m a fan. There is some Reylux and Kylux within this work, of which I am not a fan, but they’re optional side works that don’t conflict with the primary narrative if you’re not into that.

Reflektor by ReyloTrashCompactor (NextToSomething)

  • This one’s just starting, but I’m intrigued. Captured!Rey in the hands of Kylo with some interesting interplay thus far. I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes.

Retreat by ms_qualia 

  • I’m in love with this fic. Seriously. Spy Thriller AU, political intrigue, dangerously unstable Kylo and completely badass Han and Leia. Has a very strong dystopian feel to it that the author captures perfectly. 

She Who Would Be Queen by sasstasticmad

  • Historical romance/Regency-esque AU. Updates can be slow, but it has strong writing and atmosphere. 

The Death of Kylo Ren by nymja

  • The Force Bond is a very common trope in Reylo fics, but this is one of my favorite takes on it, and an unsettling examination of the negative consequences of it. Kylo Ren’s characterization is also some of the best I’ve ever seen. 

The Moon, the Sun, and the Star Inbetween. by Silvershine 

  • Most of you guys have already been reading this one for awhile, but I just got into it recently. It’s the only fic I’ve seen where Kylo and Rey have a child and Kylo is decidedly not redeemed (and his dynamic with Rey is decidedly unromantic), so it’s a very interesting examination of some common tropes.

The Proof of It All by machinewithoutfeelings

  • This is kind of the opposite story to the above, where Kylo and Rey end up having a child and she is his redemption, in a way. I’m actually not a fan of fics where K&R have children, at all, but I’ve strangely loved the way this fic has handled it since day one. It helps that the author is exceptionally skilled and handles the entire narrative with very deft hands.

The Purest Place in the Galaxy by ClockworkCourier

  • Kylo, Rey, and the Force ghosts on Dagobah! Kylo is miserable, Rey is a badass, the slow burn is both slow and burning, and the turn from humor to drama has been perfectly executed. 

The World In Its Dark Grace by  tyrantsandcreampuffs

  • This is another one that’s just getting started but seems very promising. Arranged marriage AU in a historical fantasy setting. 

Tomb Reyder by IAmLokiLocked

  • In which Rey is an archaeology student on a summer excavation in Greece, and Kylo is Hades (poorly) taking human form. An interesting twist on the Hades and Persephone myth in a modern setting. 

Hope that helps! I’m always open for more recs, and I’m sure there are others that I poke around with that I’m forgetting, but those are some of the fics that I’m reading at the moment. :)

Sonia Nassery Cole (b. 1968) is an Afghan American activist, writer, and director. In 2002, she formed the Afghanistan World Foundation, responsible for a number of causes, such as raising funds for a women’s and children’s hospital in Kabul or offering medical care to the victims of landmines.

She directed films such as The Bread Winner (2007) and The Black Tulip (2010), the latter winning the award for best picture at several film festivals: Boston, Beverly Hills, and Salento. She received the Afghan American Sisterhood Award and the UN Women Together Award.

theguardian.com
US soldier admits killing unarmed Afghans for sport

An American soldier has pleaded guilty to being part of a “kill team” who deliberately murdered Afghan civilians for sport last year.
Army Specialist Jeremy Morlock, 23, told a military court he had helped to kill three unarmed Afghans. “The plan was to kill people, sir,” he told an army judge in Fort Lea, near Seattle, after his plea.

Another reason I can no longer silently tolerate the misuse of my oppression as a means to dismiss American women’s rights advocates is that women’s oppression is global. During my speeches I often use the metaphor that patriarchy is the same monster everywhere, but it has different faces. The root essence of patriarchy- to take away power from women, to own and exploit women’s bodies, to diminish women’s contribution to society- are the same in nearly every context, but the symptoms are different.

Whether we are forcing girls into marriage in Afghanistan or blaming women for getting raped in the U.S., the message we are sending is this: Women’s bodies do not belong to themselves. Women do not get to choose what to do with their bodies or where to exist. This is why women who say “no” to their solicitors are punished both in the U.S. and in Afghanistan. The moment women take ownership of their bodies, they are seen as criminals.

Not only are the roots of patriarchy similar round the world, its enforcers are often cut from the same cloth.

U.S. Soldiers Say They Were Ordered To Ignore Sexual Assults On Afghan Boys

As American troops have been recruiting and organizing Afghan militias to take back territory from the Taliban, they’ve become “increasingly troubled that instead of weeding out pedophiles, the American military was arming them in some cases and placing them as the commanders of villages — and doing little when they began abusing children.

God, I can’t look up anything for Afghan American women without getting a crap load of political stuff and news. I am aware of the situation. But  young, Afghan- American women should be able to communicate and relate to each other on certain topics. We need to have a better online community. It can be a safe place, to speak of important matters. Or maybe just a place where we can talk about clothes, makeup, and how come none of us is on America’s Next Top Model yet. Jeez.  Does anyone else agree?

doctorswithoutborders.org
Afghanistan: MSF Staff Killed, Hospital Partially Destroyed in Kunduz | MSF USA

It is with deep sadness that we confirm so far the deaths of nine MSF staff members during the bombing last night of MSF’s hospital in Kunduz. The bombing continued for more than 30 minutes after American and Afghan military officials in Kabul and Washington were first informed by MSF that its hospital was struck. MSF urgently seeks clarity on exactly what took place and how this terrible event could have happened.

#Kunduz #Afghanistan #Breaking

anonymous asked:

Do you really think that the hate crime was racialized ? Like the guy was Afghan-American.. Couldn't it just be a homophobic crime ? Like it seems that he just meant to harm gay people in general

His coworker, I believe it was, said he was incredibly antiBlack and said the N word frequently. And it was a popular Black & Latinx gay club, and a specific Latinx-centric night. So yes, racialized. Nonwhite people can still be prejudiced against other races.

-Lux