The Shrine of Hazrat Ali (A.S). Image source Mobile phone coverage is available in more than 90% of the country. Mobile phones are status symbols.
They celebrate poetry night on Thursdays in the western city of Herat. People of all age groups gather there to share modern and ancient verses of poetry and indulge in some nice food along with some sweet tea.
. Alexander the Great captured the city of Herat in 330BC and built its ancient citadel. Alexander had a son with a beautiful woman from the province of Balkh in Afghanistan.
Arnold Schwarzenegger is the poster boy in many of the muscle building centers in Afghanistan. They say he (Arnold Schwarzenegger) looks like an Afghan.
Kandahar airfield was once the busiest single-runway airstrip in the world when it handled 1,700 to 5,000 flights a week. Here NATO installed its first complete air traffic capability in a non-NATO country.
Afghanistan is a landlocked country. Iran, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and China border Afghanistan from all sides.
The people of Afghanistan are called Afghans and their currency is Afghanis. Most of the time, people get confused between the use of these two terms.
Agriculture is the main source of income for Afghans. Afghanistan is also rich in natural resources like natural gas and oil.
“Buzkashi” is Afghanistan’s national game. Players in two teams try to catch a goat while riding a horse. This game is being played for centuries and is a tough sport.
Afghanistan became independent on August 19, 1919. They fought three wars with Britain after which they declared themselves independent. They were not directly ruled by the British but their foreign affairs were influenced by the United Kingdom.
Afghanistan has been in news more than any country in the last decade.
New Year is celebrated by Afghans on 21st March. They call it “Nawroz”. It is a pre-Islamic festival which is celebrated by a gathering of thousands of travelers from across Afghanistan to the city of Mazar-e-Sharif. There is a mosque in the center of the city. It is known as the Blue Mosque or ‘the Shrine of Hazrat Ali’ the cousin and son-in-law of the Islamic prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H).
World’s largest Buddhas (two of these) were first built in Afghanistan. These statues were destroyed by the Taliban in 2001.
The world’s first oil paintings were drawn in the caves of “Bamiyan” around 650BC.
An oil painting of a Buddhist image discovered in a cave in Afghanistan’s Bamiyan. Image credit – abc.net.au
There is only one Jewish person living in Afghanistan. His name is Zablon Simintov and he is a restaurateur and an Afghan carpet trader. He was born in 1959.
There has been 300% increase in Opium cultivation in Afghanistan in 2013 when compared to the last seven years before the U.S. invasion. Afghanistan was once the largest producer of cannabis.
Afghanistan has been a war-torn country for decades and has been under the military influence of many powers including Soviet, British, Mongols, Muslim Arabs, Mauryas, Alexandra the Great, and in the recent times under western powers.
Afghanistan is estimated to be inhabited by humans at least 50,000 years ago.
Arab Muslims spread the religion of Islam in Afghanistan in 642 CE in Herat and Zarang. They recognized Afghanistan as Al Hind (due to Afghanistan’s proximity to India.)