The Day Kabul Fell to the Taliban

Sunday, 15 August 2021

Early in the morning when I left home, I heard rumors about the fall of Kabul. The security forces, however, gave me hope. It was also very hopeful and gratifying for me to see classmates, government officials and instructors. I thought there was still hope.

I was sitting in the research methods class and the instructor was evaluating the students. I will never forget those moments. I first heard footsteps, then running and chaos from the nearby classrooms, which made us worried a lot. I left the classroom and saw that everyone was running away. I told the professor that all the classrooms were empty and that there was no one in the university except us. Finally, the instructor allowed us to leave the classroom.

The instructor looked frustrated and worried. He left the classroom with tears in his eyes after apologizing to the students as his last farewell.

When I looked back at my classmates, specifically the girls, I saw no hope for the future. Then, I looked at my notebooks and cried deeply. I thought everything was gone and we were at the end of the story. We said the last farewell with completely tired and hopeless souls and faces and with tears in our eyes.

I walked towards the home. I saw a municipal employee taking care of the greenery along the road in Karta-e Chahar, PD-3. I thought of the unpatriotic leaders who had already fled the country. I could not control my tears. It was painful for me. Those in charge of leading the country betrayed the people and fled the country, but a municipal employee who earned only 8,000 Afghanis ($100 a month) was still taking care of the greenery.

When I saw a security vehicle, the situation seemed normal to me, but when I was walking in the city, I noticed that everything was falling apart. My tears flowed. I saw people fleeing desperately. I could no longer control myself. I put the glasses on my eyes so that no one could see my tears.

I met a frustrated and crying old woman. “My son, the Taliban have arrived the way you are going,” she warned. “Do not go that way, it is dangerous.” I changed my path. Everyone started running. I also had to run to the station to save my life. When I got into the car, the person sitting in front of me said, “I am very happy that the Taliban are coming and will punish those who wear pants like infidels.” I was impressed because I also wore pants and blouse.

How to live with people who have such opinions? How can one at least live peacefully and learn something in this land? Why do we not learn from all these miseries?

I returned home in despair and heard the song “My Land” sung by Dawood Sarkhosh. I relieved my pain that day by crying.

Erfan Hashimi’s Story, Hasht-e Subh Persian


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