Afghanistan, in the past days since the capture of power by the Taliban, saw the tremendous human cost of war. Social media was flooded with harrowing images from the war-torn country witnessing a mass exodus. As several countries scrambled to evacuate their people from Afghanistan with the looming August 31 deadline, heartbreaking anecdotes of separation and tragedy surfaced on various social media platforms. Lest we forget, here is a look at some of the stories that emerged from Afghanistan.
On August 28, a Twitter user shared how his mother urged him to leave her behind to save his own life as strife tore through Afghanistan. ‘She lost a son to a pointless war, a daughter to covid and now another son to migration. “It is not gonna be easy son, but you should go! I can’t bear any more loss in this family. We’re too old and they will never come for us, you should save your life.” She said,’ Twitter user Hamed Ahmadi wrote, sharing a photo of himself with his mother.
She lost a son to a pointless war, a daughter to covid and now another son to migration. “It is not gonna be easy son, but you should go! I can’t bear any more loss in this family. We’re too old and they will never come for us, you should save your life.” She said. #afghanistan pic.twitter.com/4QEKlCMxsz— Hamed Ahmadi (@ahmadihamed_) August 28, 2021
On Instagram, US Marine Nicole Gee posted a photo of herself cradling an Afghan baby merely days before she was killed in the Kabul airport blast. She had captioned the photo with a now-gutting “I love my job".
The ambassador of France in the United Arab Emirates, Xavier Chatel, shared an image on Twitter of a child’s shoeless feet, captioning it, “It has been heartbreaking to see so many evacuated Afghan children coming out of the airplane with no shoes on." He went on to thank France aux Emirats staff for Maaz Hakim for providing footwear for the children.
It has been heartbreaking to see so many evacuated Afghan children coming out of the airplane with no shoes on. (1/2) #Afghanistan #FranceUAE pic.twitter.com/lxTUJptwqe— Xavier Chatel (@Xavier_Chatel_) August 25, 2021
A photographer shared an old photo of a child from Afghanistan’s Faryab province, in a juxtaposition to the current situation. “Faryab Province, Afghanistan. In 1990, traveling through an area devastated by war, I met this little boy in a Chai Khana - tea house. He proudly clutched some bread made with the wheat we had brought in his hands. I wish to see innocence in Afghan children’s eyes again," he wrote.
Faryab Province, Afghanistan.In 1990, traveling through an area devastated by war, I met this little boy in a Chai Khana - tea house. He proudly clutched some bread made with the wheat we had brought in his handsI wish to see innocence in Afghan children's eyes again. pic.twitter.com/QfPxwLB3s3— REZA (@REZAphotography) August 28, 2021
Scores of people shared their poignant goodbyes to their motherland as they left Afghanistan in an effort to save their lives.
I left my whole life, my home in order to continue to have a voice. Once again,I am running from my motherland. Once again, I am going to start from zero. I took only my cameras and a dead soul with me across an ocean. With a heavy heart, goodbye motherland. Until we meet again pic.twitter.com/MI3H8lQ5e4— Roya Heydari (@heydari_roya) August 26, 2021
Good bye Afghanistan 😢Me and my family left Afghanistan Country for the purpose of London with a sad heart and a bag full of sorrowsI can never forget these bad days with all their bitter experiencesI wish Afghanistan was a place to live and live again🇦🇫💔🤲🏻 pic.twitter.com/gzuoduuz8Y— zarmina kakar (@zarminakakar4) August 28, 2021
Sunday 22 August 2021: The day I leave my country, my city, my Kabul. A massacre of my dreams and aspirations. A tragic day in my life.— BILAL SARWARY (@bsarwary) August 22, 2021
The US conducted a drone strike against an Islamic State target in Afghanistan on Saturday, as the airlift of those desperate to flee moved into a fraught final stage with fresh terror attack warnings and encroaching Taliban forces primed to take over Kabul airport.
US forces overseeing the evacuation have been forced into closer security cooperation with the Taliban to prevent any repeat of a suicide bombing that killed scores of civilians crowded around one of the airport’s main access gates and 13 American troops.