Afghanistan Facts


GEOGRAPHY/MAP

Afghanistan is mountainous country situated in southern Asia, north and west of Pakistan, east of Iran. It is landlocked with an estimated population of 35 million as of 2017. Afghanistan is rich in natural gas, petroleum, coal, copper, chromite, talc, barites, sulfur, lead, zinc, iron ore, salt, precious and semiprecious stones, such as Lapis.

FLAG  Black, Red & Green 

CURRENCY: Afghani

STONE: Lapis

ARTS

  • Sports
    • Buzkashi
    • Cricket
    • Kite Flying
  • Dance
    • Attan
  • Literature
    • Poetry/Storytelling/Writing 
  • Music Instrument
    • Rabab/Tabla/Harmonium –
  • Clothing
    • Afghan Clothes (Men & Women)

PEOPLE

  • Mowlana Jalaulddin “Rumi” Balkhi - Born on September 30, 1207 C. E. in Balkh Province of Afghanistan. His family fled to Turkey to escape the Ghengis Khan invasion. His poetry and work in the field of spirituality is still popular around the world. His inspiration came from Shams Tabriz, a dervish he met in Turkey. This event led him to writing 40,000 lyric verses, including odes, eulogies, quatrains, and other styles of Eastern-Islamic poetry. The resulting collection, Divan-e Shams-e Tabrizi or The Works of Shams Tabriz, is considered one of Rumi’s masterpieces and one of the greatest works of Persian literature. Rumi died December 17, 1273 C. E., in Konya, Turkey, where he is buried. 
  • Ahmad Shah Durrani (a.k.a Abdali/Ahmadshah Baba) –Born in 1772 his father name was Mohammad Zaman khan and his mother name was Zarghuna Anna. He was the creator of Durrani Empire and founder of present day of Afghanistan. He was a brave shoulder and pusthun army core commander during Nader Shah Afshar the creator of Afsharid kingdom in Iran. Nader Shah (ruler of Afsharid kingdom) recruited Ahmadshah baba because of his impressive personality and valor. Nader Afshar was assassinated in 1747. Ahmad shah Durrani took over the administration. He created the Durani Empire which extended from most of Iran, to Samarqand and Bukhara Uzbekistan and Northern India. He invaded Mughal and Maratha Empires 7 times 1748- 1767. The capital of Durani Empire was Kandahar province. Indian states were sending annual taxes to Afghanistan. Durrani died on 16 October 1772 in Kandahar Province. His son Timor shah Abdali took over and moved the capital from Kandahar to Kabul.
  • Amānullāh Khan- Son of Habibullah khan born 1892 in Paghman, Kabul Afghanistan. When his father died, Amanullah khan became the king. He led his country to full independence from British influence. He announced regaining independence from British in 1919 August 19. His wife name was Malika (queen) Suraya. She worked with him for betterment of Afghan women and modernized Afghanistan. He sent boys and girls to foreign countries to get education built roads and schools and promoted art and culture. Saqaw (Habibullah Kalkani) backed by the British and was an Islamic extremist who spread propaganda against the king about modernizing Afghanistan and was anti-Islam. He left Afghanistan without any resistance. Son of Saqaw took over and destroyed everything; school destroyed everything Amanullah Khan had done. 
  • Babur (a.k.a Ẓahīr al-Dīn Muḥammad) - Born in Fergana Uzbekistan and the founder of the Mugul dynasty that ruled from Persia to India. He seized Kandahar in 1504, then Punjab India in 1519. He is buried in Kabul Afghanistan, in the Babur Garden. His grandson Akbar is known for building one of the world’s wonders Taj Mahal in Agra India.

LANDMARKS 

  • Balkh - Balkh was once the capital of Khorāsān; and the birthplace of Zoroaster. Balkh flourished in size until under the ʿAbbāsids and Sāmānids it earned the title of “mother of cities.” Balkh was completely destroyed by the Mongols by Genghis Khan in 1220 and was called the city of ruins for nearly a century. It was captured by Timur and rebuilt early 15th century. It is alleged that the tomb of ʿAlī, the Prophet Muḥammad’s son-in-law, is found its capital Mazār-e Sharīf. Balkh was incorporated into Afghanistan in 1850. Balkh is also the birthplace of sufism and the founder of sufism, Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī (a.k.a Rumi), whose work has been translated into many languages. He is currently the bestselling poet in United States, according to a BBC article in 2014.
  • Bamiyan- Bamiyan was visited by famous Chinese Buddhist Monks named Faxian and Xuanzang in the 5th/6th-century-CE. Balkh was it was the center of commerce and Buddhism. Two enormous figures of the Buddha were created there in the 4th and 5th centuries; the larger was 175 feet high, and the smaller was 120 feet. The statues were carved from the living rock and were finished with fine plaster and painted. When Xuanzang saw the figures, they were also decorated with gold and fine jewels in man-made caves. 
  •  Herat – Due to its location, Herat’s power alternated between Afghanistan/Iran. Until, Ahmadshah Durrani (a.k.a Abdali) took control and formed present day Afghanistan. Herat was first is mentioned in the Avesta, sacred text of the Zoroastrians as well as, in the Achaemenid inscription at Bīsitūn (c. 520 BCE). The Greek (Macedonian) conqueror Alexander the Great took control of the area in 330 BCE.
  • Kabul – Has 3,500 years of history and has been mentioned in ancient Hindu scriptures. This has been the capital of Afghanistan since 1776 after it was moved by the son of Abdali Timur Shah Durrani from Kandhar. Kabul is Afghanistan’s largest city, population wise. There are two very important sites in Kabul. They are; Dar ul Amman (Adobe of Peace) palace built in 1920 by King Amanullah Khan and a testimony to the Afghan- German friendship, as it was designed by a German engineer named Walter Harten. Bala Hissar (High Fort) which is believed to be built in the 6th century and not much are known about why and who may have built it, but it has seen many wars and occupations. 
  • Kandhar – Afghanistan’s 1st capital and the 2nd largest city in Afghanistan. It is culturally significant to pasthuns. Its name is still a controversial & complicated according to historians and researchers, because there are theories that the name derives from Ghandara Empire or that Alexander the great founded the city. It is a historic site for many important Afghan leaders, such as Ahmad Shah Durrani , the founder of Afghanistan. The Durrani Empire’s kingdom spread all the way to Delhi India.