Sunday, March 29, 2015

Talking to elders

I drove to the provincial capital of Maidan Shahr in Wardak province to try to get a sense of life outside Kabul.

Talking to elders

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I drove to the provincial capital of Maidan Shahr in Wardak province to try to get a sense of life outside Kabul.

Several months ago this trip would have been impossible. Taliban had cut the main road, Highway One, which is the northern gateway to Kabul. Fifteen hundred new US troops and additional Afghan army forces pushed back the Taliban (who basically melted away). Now the question is whether those gains can be held, and economic aid can be swiftly funneled into the province to convince local farmers that it is worthwhile to resist Taliban entreaties or threats.

These elders, members of the Provincial Council, say they have yet to see the development projects they were promised by Afghan and US officials. This does not bode well......

Trudy Rubin Inquirer Opinion Columnist
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About this blog

Trudy Rubin’s Worldview column runs on Thursdays and Sundays. Over the past decade she has made multiple trips to Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt, Turkey, Israel and the West Bank and also written from Syria, Tunisia, Lebanon, Iran, Russia, Ukraine, South Korea and China. She is the author of Willful Blindness: the Bush Administration and Iraq, a book of her columns from 2002-2004. In 2001 she was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in commentary and in 2008 she was awarded the Edward Weintal prize for international reporting. In 2010 she won the Arthur Ross award for international commentary from the Academy of American Diplomacy.

Reach Trudy at trubin@phillynews.com.

Trudy Rubin Inquirer Opinion Columnist
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