Another side of a “liberated” country

Kabul Korrespondence is a blog written by a Westerner living in the Afghan capital. He’s also an editor of the world’s first Afghan photo agency, Aina Photo.

A post from yesterday details the fascinating contradictions of the fledgling nation:

Schoolboy error shouldn’t stop attempted suicide bomber’s timetable

This morning, he was a committed jihadist. This afternoon, he wants to go back to school.

Nematullah, 17, was arrested this morning on suspicion of planning a suicide bomb attack on the Company area of Kabul. The schoolboy, from Maidan Wardak, was encouraged to blow himself up by Mullah Qasim, a Taliban commnander, police said.

Nematullah drove himself to the capital in a Toyota Town Ace packed with deadly explosives. But the plan went wrong almost immediately. Nematullah panicked when he saw a police checkpoint and tried to turn around. Unfortunately for him, he then crashed into another car.

He fled the scene and hid. Police, who had by now found explosives in the crashed minibus, gave chase and captured the boy.

“My school exams are next week – the government should release me,” Nematullah told

Quqnoos questioned his academic ambition, given that, had his plan succeeded, he would have been dead by lunchtime on Thursday.

“As I’m alive, it would be nice to pass my exams,” he replied.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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