The Taliban and COVID-19


The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges, as well as opportunities, for the Taliban as they vie for power in Afghanistan. One of the world’s first major outbreaks after China was in Iran, home to a large Afghan diaspora, many of whom fled back into Afghanistan as the crisis in Iran worsened. Predictably, they … Continue reading The Taliban and COVID-19

Afghanistan’s Bandit Tradition


While decades of conflict have created a degree of anarchy and lawlessness across Afghanistan, within Afghan culture there have long been romanticized portrayals of bandits that continue to the present day. Pashtun culture in particular is highly egalitarian, with strongly pronounced streaks of both individualism and justice. The ideal Pashtun male is someone who is … Continue reading Afghanistan’s Bandit Tradition

My Writing Superpower


Since starting to write full-time, I’ve discovered that I have a writing superpower. The most surprising thing about it, though, is that it isn’t really about writing. You almost certainly have this superpower, too. Let me explain. Any creative work is hard. Steven Pressfield calls the thing that makes it hard “resistance.” It’s that force … Continue reading My Writing Superpower