|Kabul: 19:01 PM      |
Welcome to Kabul:Reconstructions. You can follow the information below, which has been gathered from a
number of sources by a number of participants (click on the names at left for bios), to reconstruct your
own picture of events in Kabul since this site was launched on March 8th, 2003 and, in a sense, since the
reconstruction of Afghanistan began somewhere in the winter of 2001-02.
Some of this information has been provided in response to specific questions submitted by visitors like you. Please note that this section of the project is now maintained as an archive and has not been updated since 2005. Click here to ASK A QUESTION.
Arian Mouj Sharifi
Salam -- To continue the last post I sent a few minutes ago. Here is a bio I wrote with his sisters. Farhad Ahad (Jan 31, 1970 - Feb 24, 2003) Farhad Ahad was born to Abdul Ahad and Alia Ahad in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1970. He was a bright child and was an exceptional student especially when he attended Lycee Amani (Amani High School). He often considered his Amani years as the best of his life and carried many wonderful memories from his time there. At the age of fifteen, he was under the threat of being drafted into the Communist Army. He and his family fled Afghanistan by foot, disguised as Koochies (nomads) and were smuggled out to Pakistan. The family lived in Pakistan for 20 months in the city of Islamabad and then migrated to the United States arriving at JFK Airport in New York on December 4rd of 1986 and settled in Flushing Queens. Farhad, however, wanted to explore America on his own terms. He left New York to attend the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree in 1993. A year later he also received his Masters of Science in Mechanical Engineering. For the next several years Farhad worked for an engineering firm, but soon returned to graduate school in order to find a more challenging career. In 1999, Farhad received his MBA (Master of Business Administration) from Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina. Farhad, had left Afghanistan as a boy, but now he had grown into a savvy, charming and successful man. Despite, all of his success in his career at Enron Corp and later at Progress Energy Corp where he served as a Business Analyst, Farhad remained very connected to his country of birth, Afghanistan. On June 4th 2001, he founded an Afghan expatriate organization called Afghan Solidarity. At this time, the world had forgotten about the handful of dust that Afghanistan had been transformed into under the Taliban regime. The Buddha statues had recently been destroyed and the Afghanistan as Afghan expatriates knew it, was becoming only a myth. Farhad stepped up at this moment of great ennui to motivate young Afghans through his organization to devote their energies to their forgotten homeland. This quickly propelled him as one of the leading activists among Afghan Americans. After September 11th 2001, Farhad became one of the top spokesmen for young Afghan Americans and was very vocal about issues that would help the Afghan people and their cause. Through the Society of Afghan Engineers, Farhad finally visited Kabul after 17 years of exile as part of a delegation of Afghan American Engineers. This was a four-member delegation and Farhad was the youngest in the group and one of the only representatives from his age group. From March 31st to April 13th 2002, he surveyed Kabul, met with dignitaries and understood and noted the needs of Afghanistan. From that point on, his path to directly help his people became quite clear. He noticed the dire need for intellectuals and technocrats in Afghanistan and also knew that many lived abroad just as he did. During his trip, he was also asked by the Afghan government to serve his country and help in the rebuilding process. He remembered thinking, "I felt torn between my responsibilities I had in America and to the increasing sense of responsibility I felt for Afghanistan." The choice was simple, and bravely he accepted the position in Afghanistan, but asked for some time to tend to unfinished business in the States. Upon arrival to the US, he resigned from his position as a business analyst for Progressive Energy Corp in North Carolina at the end of May 2002. In July of 2002, Farhad returned to Kabul and was appointed as the Director of the Business and Economic Affairs for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In his own words, "Everything happened so quickly that I didn't have time to process it all." He set to work immediately and at times would find a way to send reports back to his friends and family in the United States about his work and life in Kabul. He was the eyes and ears of his friends and Afghan Solidarity in Kabul and basically served as the emissary between the two worlds. He often called on the Afghans living abroad and in position to help to return "home" and to serve and help rebuild the country that they left behind. According to him, it would be the joined hands of these young Afghan expatriates along with their brothers and sisters in Afghanistan that would rebuild the homeland. While many Afghans of his generation have a vision of "someday" returning back and lending a helping hand, Farhad didn't wait for "someday". He left his family and friends and a six figure annual salary and returned "home" and began to face the challenges head on. He came back to the States this past December to visit his ailing father and also to make plans for the next chapter of his life as he had finally met the "right lady" and planned to get married later this year. His assignment in Kabul was due to end within the next four months and Farhad was not scheduled to go back until the end of February. But as fate would have it, he was asked to report to Pakistan and join the other delegates from the Ministry of Mines & Industries for their meeting concerning the gas pipeline involving Turkmenistan, Pakistan, Afghanistan and India. After delivering a superb speech at the World Bank meetings in Washington DC, Farhad left for Pakistan to participate in the talks concerning the pipeline. Following the meetings in Pakistan, he and the rest of the delegation chartered a Cessna plane to visit a Copper Field in Baluchistan, but unfortunately their plane "reportedly" crashed into the Arabian Sea upon take off from Karachi Airport. His positive spirit, his call to action and his boundless hope for his country shall serve as inspiration for all Afghans. He worked endlessly on behalf of Afghanistan and fought his war through scholarly and critical writings, activism, and through his service and ceaseless efforts. He was relentless in his efforts to remind the people of the United States about the plight of the Afghans. He will always be remembered as the brave Farhad Ahad, the leader and the friend who lived what he preached. He was an ambitious and gifted person with a great outlook on life and an unbelievable ability to motivate everyone. His life has left a deep imprint in the hearts of all those people that knew him personally or through his superb writings. He brought hundreds of Afghans together via Afghan Solidarity many of who became life-long friends. In his short life on this earth, he touched the lives of many and his legacy and memories will live on. He is survived by his father Abdul Ahad and his sisters: Safia, Homaira, Fatima, Fauzia, and Nilofar, and his brother Elyas. Farhad often talked about his late mother and how much he loved and missed her and now he is in heaven with her. He will be put to rest next to his beloved mother this weekend in New York. God bless him and give strength to his family and friends
Posted By: zohra   May 30th 2003, 2003 1:58 AM
Kabul: Partial Reconstructions is an installation
and public dialogue project that explores the multiple meanings and resonances of
the idea of reconstruction -- as both process and metaphor -- in the context of present-day Kabul.
www.kabul-reconstructions.net is an online discussion forum, information resource, and medium for the communication of questions and answers about the reconstruction between people inside and outside the city of Kabul itself.