Custom Search

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Afghanistan: Five Years Later

There are things left unsaid when we speak of Afghanistan, people see the headlines that are often critical, they see the pictures which are often gruesome and they are told day after day from the liberal media what a mess Afghan is. We see talk of a resurgence of Taliban, but rarely do we compare the Afghanistan of the past with the present Afghanistan .

Wapo speaks to that today, from Donald Rumsfeld.

Security: The Afghan National Army has grown to more than 30,000, with approximately 1,000 soldiers added each month. The Afghan National Police now number more than 46,000. Afghan forces were successful in providing security for the two national elections held since 2004.

Economy: The size of Afghanistan's economy has tripled in the past five years and is projected to increase another 20 percent next year. Between 2003 and 2004, government revenue increased 70 percent, to $300 million. Coca-Cola recently opened a $25 million bottling plant in Kabul, and other large multinational companies are considering opportunities in Afghanistan.

Education: In the past five years, more than 42 million school textbooks have been printed and distributed, and some 50,000 Afghan teachers have been trained. Almost 600 schools have been built, and now more than 5 million children attend school, a 500 percent increase from 2001.

Health care: In 2001 only 8 percent of Afghans had access to at least basic health care; at least 80 percent do today. Some 5 million Afghan children have been vaccinated.

Infrastructure: Thousands of kilometers of roads have been built or improved since the Taliban fell. Since 2004, 25 provincial courthouses have been built and hundreds of judges trained.

Why do we always hear about the bad, but so very rarely get shown the good? Is it the media and what they choose to report or is human nature to look at everything through pessimistic eyes?