I arrive in Kabul after a two and a half year absence, and there is much more construction, and a lot more sandbags, a sign at how much the security situation has deteriorated. I wonder if the construction is really changing the face of Kabul, but then I chastize myself for being an optimist. I call up an Afghan friend, a young man who speaks perfect English. We talk about old times, we used to work together in Kabul, and I am shocked to hear him say how positive he feels about Afghanistan’s future. He grew up under the Soviets, then the civil war and the Taliban regime that followed. Now, he says, he has a future. He has money because he works for the international community and can afford to study at a private university in Kabul. He likes to drink and party too. His brother has gone to India to get his business degree with the view to coming back.
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Originally published at The Huffington Post on the 31st of March, 2010.