The book, “No Good Men Among The Living” by Anand Gopal was my, not so light, holiday read. I couldn’t put it down. I loved his precise journalistic writing in recounting US's longest war from three Afghans perspective.
“He follows a Taliban commander, who rises from scrawny teenager to leading insurgent; a US-backed warlord, who uses the American military to gain personal wealth and power and a village housewife trapped between two sides.” Mc Millan Publishers review.
Gopal is a great story teller who helps the reader understand the many facets of Afghan society and empathize with the three Afghans, even the notorious warlord.
As an Afghan who has been working on bettering Afghan women’s lives in the province of Ghazni and, as an American (taxpayer) I found myself very angry at the irresponsible handling of this war on both sides. I am angry at the Afghan leadership who took advantage of the American army naiveté to settle old debts and kill off rivals, while filling their bank accounts with millions of dollars. I am angry at the American leadership, both in Washington and on the ground in Afghanistan, for aligning themselves with criminals - without recognizing the many shades of grey when it comes to meddling in an unfamiliar region.
I invite you to read this book and draw your own conclusions. Next week I'll have a much hopeful and uplifting post about the future of Afghanistan. It'll be about Afghanistan's first lady, Rula Ghani.