My Afghan Mom This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

   The events of September 11th have left much in question.Many Americans support the President in fighting back and demand retaliation.Bombing Afghanistan is what Americans want.

But, have they ever thoughtabout the innocent people there? Has it occurred to them that truly good peoplemay call Afghanistan home?

My mother once called Afghanistan home. Shegrew up there, so I asked if she could give me insight into the tragic events.She began by telling me about her beautiful childhood in Kabul, the capital city.

"The mountains gave a gorgeous view, the rivers gave peaceful music,and the air was ever so clean," she began.

She told me she was likeany typical girl. The country may not have had the freedom of America, but thatdid not matter, for the culture was different. In 1973, the King of Afghanistan,who is now living in Rome, was forced into exile when Russian forces took over.He is part of the coalition that is planning a post-Talibangovernment.

After the king was exiled, the country began to deteriorate.Poverty and crime increased, and there were no laws because of the differentpowers trying to control the country. Massive confusion spread throughoutAfghanistan because the trust had been lost. The Afghan people were brainwashedby the many groups who attempted to seize power, and this was one of the reasonsmy mother left her homeland.

When I began talking to her about theTaliban, I asked if she liked the fact that they arrived. She had said that theybrought order to the country, so why wouldn't she have liked them? There was asimple answer: my mother immediately added that the Taliban and Osama Bin Ladencame and tried to help the people with their "sweet talks and money ...(they) fooled the Afghan people."

The Taliban betrayed the trust ofthe country. They brought about their mischief in the name of Islam. She resentedthat they were using the name of Islam to kill people. That's not Islam.

Islam is like many other great religions in that it is a religion ofpeace, where one values life and does not take life. Islam, my mother says, isnot what the Taliban or terrorists follow.

Then I talked to her about thedevastating events that took place on September 11th. I remember coming home andseeing her with tears in her eyes. She was watching the Twin Towers ontelevision, or what was left of them.

My mother said, "I feel likeI'm stuck in between - I'm upset for the victims and their families, but also forthe innocent Afghan people who may now be jeopardized."

A few peoplecan give a country a bad name. People say America is now fighting a war againstAfghanistan and that the Afghans are the enemy. However, my mother is the exactopposite of that statement. She wished it would not come down to war, but if itsaim is to eliminate the Taliban, then let it be.

Finally I asked my motherto give me her opinion of Bin Laden. She said, "He's evil; he's the devil.God will take care of him soon. His number is up."

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This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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