I am here :

English > Poetry and short stories

Hazarajat or country of tears. (6)

04/06/2011 18:43 (comments: 0)

A short story

Le grand boudha de Bâmiyân avant sa destruction

The truck stopped and we jumped down quickly.
The others were excited and disputed about who would have the honor of becoming a Ghazi by killing an enemy of Islam.
A ridiculous concern for Afghans that becomes a Ghazi by fighting foreign aggressors.
A terrible scene revealed to my gaze and I wanted to be blind, be deaf, be dead.
Some fifty bodies were lying there and a long line of men that waiting for death in a terrifying silence. The gunfire that destroyed the lives of my people and the screams of a few women who attended the execution of their men resonated proud and strong.

The tears blured my sight and I went toward the file, Adul followed me.
I called the name of the uncle and an old man with white beard moved by hearing his name.
 » Where are your sons ?  »
Unnecessary question by seeing two young men who held his hands.
I turned round to the nearest Taliban.
 » These are Sunnis !  »
He looked at me with an air of suspicion, my appearance… Do I should not myself wait in the queue?
Adul intervened.
 » These are Tajiks ! I know them !  »
The Taliban ordered the three men to leave the queue. He didn’t care anyway that three lives were preserved. It was always enough to kill…

Adul griped my arm.
 » Go my brother ! Go in peace with your people ! We are Afghani and we kill on the battlefield. Not like that…  »
I hugged him and leaved, erasing the vision of the queue of those who were going to die today. I had to save the three men first.

We went for the mountains, a mother who would never deny her children.
I went back quickly to the village to inform the women and to bring what they needed for survival in the mountains.

The slaughter lasted three days and then the Taliban perhaps tired of the killing, put an end to the carnage. Seven days after this madness, they allowed the families to bury the dead.
Some time later, Khalili and his troops took back the control of the region. He went to the cemetery to pray at the tomb of victims. People in the village were screaming and crying:
 » Why is he there when he had self a role in the killing of our men ?  »
We learned later that one of his lieutenants had proposed to attack the Taliban during the night because they had bad knowledge of the region. Khalili had replied:

 » Let the Taliban come and kill everyone for that in future the people react and fight against him.  »
I was not surprised to learn such a new…

Shortly after, I went back to Bamyan.
I had hidden my arming and I was looking for a worthy way to disappearing from the face of this world…

The Taliban let me in peace, they were engaged in combat against Khalili and were thinking that I fell in combat.
I lived as a hermit in our family home.
I spent my time to meditate and pray.
I wanted to make a pact with the ghosts of Mazar who were back in force…

In March, the powder was talking again in our valley.
The Taliban fired on the Buddhas with all the firepower available to them…
The Buddhas resisted as proud Hazâras, not conceding more than a few stones to the arrogant. They were in rage.
They did bring foreign experts, experts on explosives.

I melted in the populace and learned that Mullah Omar had declared the statues idolatrous and that they should disappear.
We all knew that this is the Hazâras which should disappear. That the statues didn’t matter to this mad guy but we had to be broken in our pride in our symbols. The Buddhas were a part of our identity.
The titanic explosions that destroyed them were like earthquakes and left many cracks in my house.
I cried like I never cried, not even child. I cried the two statues as I cried my father and mother, both benevolent jinns who protected the valley.
When I looked in their direction, I saw these two holes and thought about this man that they blinded on the street because he was a Hazâra. The Taliban wanted to blind our people this time.

After the destruction of the Buddhas, I left to the mountains to join my people there. I wanted to make me useful…
I stayed until October 2001 when the weapons speak, spit again on Afghanistan.
The U.S. army invaded the country to free ourselves of the Taliban and this time they wanted to win a war with fighting.
It was short-lived, the Taliban diluted themself under the blows of Apache helicopters, drones and satellites of the enemy. I knew that they melted for a better reappearing and I took the decision to spend what remains of my life to defend my country.

I left to Kabul when the military operations permitting it, determined to engage in the new army of this new Afghanistan where the vice president was a Shiite named… Khalili……

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

Image - Le grand boudha de Bâmiyân avant sa destruction - Lutralutra - 1978 - License :

Licence Creative commons bysa

Forward : Hazarajat or country of tears. THE END

Go back

Add a comment