Friends and Family,
be my last “Afghan Update” as I leave
KITE RUNNER – THE BOOK
Some of you may have read “Kite Runner” by Khaled Hosseini and know that kite flying was a national pastime until it was banned by the Taliban (if you have not read the book, I recommend it). After the Taliban were removed in Dec 01, kite flying did not resurge quickly – it has taken some time and is only now again becoming what could be considered an Afghan pastime.
KITE RUNNER – THE PASTIME
kite flying interesting in
If it is not too hot, and the conditions are fair, Fridays (the Islamic “weekend”) are often passed with kite flying. The open area of a nearby cemetery serves as a battlefield for kite flyers. Note in the photos the gender of the people in the photos… all male. Women are not allowed at such activities.
PHOTOS: I’ve included some photos Omid (my interpreter) took for me on a weekend in early October (during Ramazan).
4) Kite Fight
5) Nadir Shah Tomb & Mosque (Afghan King 1929-1933)
8) Kabul Sunset
Vic Hearne, Col Mike Therrien, & Lt Col Bill
Cooley shortly after 19 Oct 2005 awards ceremony at Office of Security
This assignment has been difficult due to the separation from family… but very rewarding on a personal and professional level. Working with the Afghan Minister of Defense and his staff, establishing the processes and procedures they will use in the future, and most importantly building genuine relationships with the people of Afghanistan not only directly impacts National Security Policy, but has been personally rewarding. I will miss the Afghans I worked with and hope to return to this beautiful country some day as a tourist.
for our mission here, for the leadership in
Hope you are all doing well and I look forward to returning to the states and seeing many of you. God Speed and God Bless
WILLIAM T. COOLEY,
Program Manager, Afghan Defense Sector
Directorate of Program Integration (DPI)
Office of Military