No Taliban, but still there are bans

Afghanistan is slowly getting back to the gloomy time of the Taliban rule. This is the time, when women wear paranjas, there is neither television, nor radio. Everything that does not match the norms of Islam is banned.

One could recall CNN’s reports from Kabul: smiling women, men get in line to the barbers’, schools and cinemas open. Everyone was having the sense of freedom. There was even the first soccer game between the local residents and peacemakers. Could anyone think that all of that would disappear, go up like smoke? It seems that this is exactly, what is currently happening in Afghanistan.

The broadcast of Indian movies is banned on the Kabul television. The newspaper Hindustan Times wrote that any women-performed songs were also banned.

Experts believe that these are the vestiges of the fight between Islamic and moderate members of the new Afghan government. The new bans gave a good shake to the positions of Afghan President Hamid Karzai and the Minister for information, Said Rahim. Both Karzai and Rahim stick to the liberal course.

It seems to be ironic, but Indian movies and songs performed by women are broadcast by the state television in Kandahar, which used to be the stronghold the Taliban movement in Afghanistan. Nothing has been banned either in the north of the country, or in Mazar-i-Sharif. Yet, the Kabul television is under the control of more conservative elements, the followers of the Northern Alliance, as the mentioned newspaper believes.

The struggle between conservatives and liberals is an eternal issue. Similar things are currently happening in Iran. Iranian President Mohammad Khatami declared war on conservatives. Well, let’s see what happens in those countries. Maybe, the pessimistic tone of its article was in vain. Who knows?

Dmitry Chirkin

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Author`s name Olga Savka