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Hazarajat or the country of tears. (2)

04/06/2011 18:20 (comments: 0)

A short story

Pullout of Soviet troops from Afghanistan

In the late seventies, the news fell like a bomb. It was war, the infidels among the infidels had invaded the country.
I learned a lot in Pakistan and when the calls for help came from Afghanistan, I was leaving with a light heart, happy to see my city, my valley, happy to fight the evil for the glory of God.

I arrived in Bamyan in a night of January. I breathed the fresh air of our mountains, snow covered the landscape and my heart melted at the sight of the familiar silhouettes of the Buddhas. I spent the night with my maternal uncle who was delighted to see a man in me, a fighter, a Mujaheddin.

At dawn, we prayed together, he the Shiite, me the Sunni. We had prayed for victory, for our country, our people and for the glory of God.
His son guided me to the mountains, to our mujahideen, The Hazâras who were no more under-Afghan, who were fighters, who were ready to fight with one of the world’s leading power.

To them the flames of hell, or us the martyrs paradise…
We will fight, hard and without pity.
We will fight for a long time.

The Soviet casualties were noticeable, ours minimal. They ventured no more out of cities. A long time, apart from specific operations we didn’t see a soldier, an infidel. We spent a lot of time to hide us from their formidable aviation and helicopter gun ships. Rumors reported the delivery of missiles that would allowed us to cast on the soil these monsters of steel.

These monsters who droped other monstrosities on our villages, toys bombs to maim children, to kill people…

We heard that the Pakistani secret services who were distributing the US manna, gave those wonders just to Sunnis.

I cursed these fools, these bureaucrats for their narrow view. We died invisible as always. The destiny of the Hazâras interesting just themself and the All Mighty.

This war did not ended, winters succeeding the fall, which succeeded the summers, which succeeded the spring. The time was abolished. Only the feeling of emptiness when we thought of a mujaheddin, a friend, a cousin, reminded us that he had fallen already two winters ago… The death was our only clock, her sprocket wheels who crushed bodies measured the time in her own image, that of eternity.

After nine years of fighting, the Russians left the country to its fate. The Americans saw this as a great victory. A strange people these Americans who earned wars without fighting…

The war over, I went to Kabul to visit my parents, show them that they could be proud that their small became a man, a mujaheddin, one of these fierce combatants, poorly clothed, poorly armed, poorly fed, which had driven away a modern army, with more than two hundred and fifty thousand men. One of those who have bled the Soviet Union where it was painful, his money.

The situation worsened rapidly and my father wanted at any price that I return to Pakistan. His desire was that I become a mullah, teaching in these Pakistani schools until I can return home.

The war became civilwar. The tribes and warlords tear each other, eager to control, hungry for power, forgetting why they had fought…

Returning to Pakistan was painful to me, the dust of this city was suffocating.
To be back to the madrassa seemed to be an unjustified step backwards. However, I really lost my Arabic and mostly I discovered that we were now entered a new era. That one of perpetual war, a war that would stop only when Islam prevail on the whole planet.
Islam, we didn’t care of the form of government. We wanted to islamize the behaviors, the justice, the human beings, to teach them to respect the law of God and we were able to explain it and enforcing it because we had studied…

We were now Taliban…

Once, I met a man for whom my professors had a lot of respect. He spoke little but his eyes shining with intelligence out of the ordinary and a strong will. He had a good smile that put you in trust. This man whom I had long time forgotten the name should give us the defeat and death a decade later. His name was Osama bin Laden, he was a wealthy Saudi and exalted, a man who lived the Jihad.
I learned also about the deviance and the perversion of the Shiites. I was ashamed thinking of my mother…
The Shiites were not Muslims hammered they out. They were infidels and made the Koran dirty…
Beginning 1994, I was asked to take a decision. I had to prove my sincerity towards our cause by returning to the country and fighting with my brothers the Taliban. We will save Afghanistan and establish an ideal society that would allow the light of Islam to spread to the world…
In October, we were raided in Afghanistan and in a few months we controlled the southern half of the country.
The Afghanis killed Afghans.

The people acclaimed us because we brought peace and hope, because we were fighting for God and that his justice prevails in this world.
In 95 we captured Herat, 96 Kabul and our leader Mullah Omar, my hero became de facto the head of state, commander of the believers.

In 1997 we captured Mazar-i-Sharif but it was a terrible trap and three thousand of my brothers in arms were killed in this city, only Shiites could have committed such infamy.
We were in rage, in 1998 we captured the city back and we slaughtered tens of thousands of inhabitants.
Hazâras like me…
I killed people who looked like brothers to me without batting an eyelid, eager for revenge, hating these Shiites who had try to destroy our work, which had raised to fight our just cause and had murdered our fighters.

Its when I went back to Kabul and taking my mother in my arms that I realized the horror that I had done…
I disowned my people, my family and murdered my blood.
I was almost going mad when the order came to me to go to Bamyan with my unit.
I was broken but I was leaving far from the ghosts of Mazar-i-Sharif, without knowing that others ghosts would soon spring from my hands in the dear valley that saw me born…

This work is protected © 2008 Thierry Benquey - All rights reserved

Image - Pullout of Soviet troops from Afghanistan. - Mikhail Evstafiev - 1988 - License :

Licence Creative commons bysa

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