Proliferating blast walls and security checkpoints have transformed the Afghan capital, Kabul, into a maze of concrete. Driving is increasingly arduous. Cars and mopeds carrying explosives are a serious concern – so much so that many diplomats and international contractors now avoid the roads altogether.
For those that can’t take to the sky, rain poses a constant threat. Even insignificant amounts of precipitation can overwhelm the city’s open sewage system and bring traffic to a standstill.
From a driver’s perspective, then, there is little to show for 15 years of reconstruction since the Taliban tried to turn back the clock in Afghanistan. Yet that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been progress.
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Andrew Bogrand tracks developments in Afghanistan in his capacity as communications and outreach officer for Democracy International.