Cables from Kabul

Cables from KabulWatch a first-hand account of the widespread corruption; get an inside look at the drug trade, rampant child sex abuse, and ever-present Taliban control. All these elements make Afghanistan one of the most frightening and unstable places on earth.

We touch down in Kabul and are treated to Taliban hospitality on the first night: a suicide bomb at a neighboring hotel interrupts a pleasant night's sleep.

After kicking around pieces of the suicide bomber with local kids, we meet General Farooq Assas, head of the Afghan National Police Force, the kids who are being trained to police the country. At the end of the day, we drink moonshine with an ex-Mujahideen who has a thing for young boys. And they said Kabul would be heavy.

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Ratings: 5.29/10 from 7 users.

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25 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Classifieds Weekly

    Thanks Vlatko
    For including this most eye opening documentary ever in the history of mankind!
    Now we know why the Jews mad America invade Afgh. so that we can teach them a thing or two about civilization and civilised society.
    Drugs, Prostitution, Crime, - young boys killing spree in theatres, corporate greed, are nothing compared to what the Taliban are doing!!
    Well done again!

  2. Alliyah Brown

    Good afghan muslims can turn bad on thursday night and drink alcohol? sorry, but they are not good muslims if they drink alcohol ever!

  3. Arcot Murali

    You are one of the person coming from the " civilized society", do you say your country has none of it! Please clean your backyard first, before pointing your finger at others.

  4. Teddy Mcd

    Good doc from Vice.

  5. Renevonn

    Well, can't really say I was all that surprised.
    Breaking down the problems, it would seem to me that the corruption, the drug trade, the child-sex trade and the threat from extremist are all symptoms of the overall problem which could be summed up as a lack of comprehensive control by any sort of "just" group or leadership.

    Afghans are tribal by tradition and well set in their ways. I highly doubt the country will be in any way revived by anything the U.S. or its allies do or do not do within that mountainous place. Regardless of how many boots you put on the ground or how many bullets you lace the air with, any first-world country setting foot in Afghanistan is far more likely to stir up the same problems they arrived to solve; animosity towards outsiders, distrust towards the west and a general unwillingness to compromise with anyone.

    In any case, the U.S. isn't exactly a shinning example of "civilization" when we're the richest nation on earth and yet a fair chunk of our fellow citizens live hand-to-mouth and can barely make ends meet. Let's not forget the health problems that typically accompany a western-style civilization; obesity, heart disease and cancer. Corruption is also a problem in the west, let's be honest here.

    Something should indeed be done to help the Afghans, they're people just like all of us who deserve the same rights and liberties that all free people should enjoy. I don't think a military solution is the answer however. The Afghans may be culturally set apart from much of the world, but damn if they're not a tenacious lot.

  6. dmxi

    it seems that democracy leaves certain symptoms of a distinct sickness we
    call consumption!

  7. slpsa

    I refused to work in that Country, before 9/11. Now, I would still say the same thing. Forget it, no amount of money is worth your life. It is very cheap there. Enough said.

  8. slpsa

    You said it well. Only you can include Canada in that, now that Stevie boy has the reins. We are one step removed from the same fate as the US these days. Open season on our country by the same people that waged war in Afghanistan. Someone made a lot of money from the last few wars. It was not you or me, that much we know.

  9. qais_prince

    I don't think any country can solve Afghanistans problems, only Afghans can solve there on problems. If US is there not because of Taliban or any other groups, is for drugs .... And also no one wants afghanistan to be peace country because everyone making money out of that and poor people getting killed.

  10. John-Sebastian Barrera

    Theyre capable of putting their own country back together, yet right after they say "but with endemic corruption..." so, are they or are they not? seems thats a negative.

  11. Jeremy Hughes

    I thought it was very refreshing to see someone actually admit that our country is as bad as Afghanistan, essentially, just in different ways. A child that might not live because child molesters might kidnap and eventually murder him, is sad, but so is the kid that lives in my town whose mother is a crackhead and he is going to die of malnutrition on any given day. I know MOST of us have it pretty good here in the US, but there is a huge chunk that essentially FEELS like they are actually living in "Afghanistan" because their day to day is no different. Murder, rape, pillaging, it's all the same, and I'm glad to see someone else that realizes that.

    (BTW, I don't mean as bad as Afghanistan for EVERYONE, just a small but equally human portion of our population, would have the same odds of day to day survival here, as over there...)

    Now as to what to do about it? Don't ask me... As far as I can tell, ANY system we can devise, is corruptible... I guess the Founding Fathers nailed it when they talked about the necessity for EVERY single individual to make it a personal responsibility to get a great education and stay informed, too bad society makes it incredibly hard to get a good education, without being in debt for the majority of your life.... Gah...

    I say we just let Jacques Fresco (Google him if you don't know who he is) write up a proposal, and give it a shot, if we were able to convince people to be consumers, we can reprogram ourselves to become efficient creators. After having read about Jacques, for the past ten years, I feel positive he is an honest person and has a lot of integrity, I seriously doubt he is a puppet / "NWO" leader lol)

    I dunno, that or maybe we are just a spec in a cosmic void and none of this even matters, lmao

    Sorry, went off on a tangent, herbalizing does that : )

    Nice day all, my 2 cents.

  12. wald0

    "Drugs, Prostitution, Crime, - young boys killing spree in theatres, corporate greed, are nothing compared to what the Taliban are doing!!"

    Tell that to the victims of these horrible injustices, their lives are just as destroyed by these things as Aghan lives are by the Taliban. We live in a clearly dysfunctional society that ranks among the lowest performing countries on the globe when it comes to health care, education, infant mortality, violent crime, domestic violence, etc. and of course we have the incarceration rates to prove it as well. Our economic system breeds greed and corruption wich has infested our politics and caused the current recession felt around the world. Yet we have the arrogant and uninformed opinion that we have something to teach everyone? Its no wonder so many people hate Americans- we horde, use, and/or control over half the resources on the planet and what do we do with them, we build mini-malls and water parks, we throw away more than most countries eat, over half of our population is severly over weight and sick while the other half is whining about depression and ADD, and of course we maintain a military ten times the size of any one elses so we can continue to horde, use, and/or control all the resources- Yet we turn around and tell some of the poorest people in the world that they must save the rainforest to preserve the delicate bio-diversity found within? We torture people, deny them due process, and violate their civil rights and get away with it by imprisoning them in foreign lands and calling them military combatants- Yet we stand up at the U.N. and try to place sanctions on other countries for violating peoples civil rights- its a joke!! You say this was the most eye opening documentary known to mankind, well there are several on here that expose the crimes of the U.S. and other Western countries- maybe watch a few of those and see if they open your eyes a little further? Just a suggestion.

    General disclaimer: I am not saying that we should not advocate for the protection of the rainforest or for peoples civil rights to be respected, I am saying we must lead by example if we hope to have any credibility when we do so.

  13. brianrose87

    All the things you mention in regards to Modern America are indeed true. It seems that China, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE are following similar trends; we merely beat them to the finish line, and long ago at that. The love of excess and greed that have developed in modern societies seems to be a natural development of a successful, entitled society.

    There are, of course, multiple examples of wealthy nations that manage to avoid this fate. Most of them are in Europe, and specifically Northern Europe. I'm just hypothesizing, but the extreme devastation of WWII in Europe could have been a strong influence to Europe's humility, peace, and health (consideringthe centuries of senseless, pride driven, resource claiming war that preceded WWII). The U.S., untouched by WWII, became egotistical, a condition that was magnified by the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    China's increasing global status is happening alongside growing obesity in the country and, no doubt, corruption rumbles through local business and government. Although, Eastern Philosophy may limit the progression of such trends. The wealthy oil nations of Saudi Arabia and the UAE are the most obese, entitled, frivolous countries in the world, again likely a result of success unimpeded (as of yet) by reality.

  14. wald0

    "The wealthy oil nations of Saudi Arabia and the UAE are the most obese, entitled, frivolous countries in the world..."

    Really, even worse than America? I would have to do a little research on that before I could buy it out right. That said I agree with you and have stated before that America's condition may very well be the natural end result of what we deem as success. That is why I think we need to seriously rethink what success really means on both a personal as well as a global level. If you define it as material wealth or military might then by all accounts the U.S. was and still is very successful. However, if you measure success as being a nation that produces well adjusted, happy, well informed, and functional citizens while never intentionally encroaching on another country's rights or abilities to do the same, we were never successful at all. In fact by this definition I would guess there are very few if any countries that have been successful.

  15. Sam Haslam

    2:44: "The NDS, an Afghanistan version of the CIA, with less of an aversion to torture."

    Since when did the CIA have an aversion to torture?

  16. rljp

    to work and live in Saudi or the UAE would enlighten your ignorance. Does america import labor from India or Pakistan and pay them 600 a month to build roads, bridges, buildings, momuments, nanny their children, do their yards etc. Do Americans get to sit around and collect paychecks to keep a whole famly going in the typical lifestyle of an american? Do Americans automatically get civil cervant jobs where they can sit around all day while said third world labor actually does the work? Saudi and the UAE are indeed the most obese frivilous, entitled countries in the world. And the great thing about it is one day the oil will be gone and they will be absolutely worthless as countries and cultures. They will not find or discover or create what is to come after oil.

  17. wald0

    Funny how attuned your sense of justice gets when you are critiqueing Arab countries, yet you seem oblivious to the fact that your country is the main support for the very leaders you say are so horrible. I mean if we are going to police the world, which we have no business doing in the first place, ask yourself why we never seem to go where we are really needed and wanted (Darfur and countless other civil rights tragedies). Why do we support the very leaders you are complaining about by supplying them with billions every year- could it have anything to do with the billions we make off the back of the very system you are screaming foul over? Do you thnk we are still on oil because we have to be? I know for fact that isn't true because I work in research chemistry and I know we have the technology to solve this problem right now. Who suppresses that knowledge?- American corporations and politicians- why do they suppress it when they know it would put an end to the very injustices you are so sensitive of?- because they are making far too much money to care about the well being of people half around the world, or even in their own country for that matter. If the people of these countries you seem to hate so badly stood up to over throw these leaders do you think we would let that happen? Of course we wouldn't, not unless we knew who was to replace them and knew we could still make our money and get our oil. You are stuck on the symptoms and not looking at the root of this desease we call oil, American capitalism/dollars is what fuels this system of corruption and refuses to let anyone innovate around it.

  18. rljp

    you use the word you too much. I am not critisizing the leaders I am telling you how the country works. Am I screaming fowl? I am telling you how it is. You posted contradiction to the statement regarding the US vs Saudi or the UAE. I made an effort to enlighten you.

    You created a debate putting nothing but words in my mouth which servers absolutely no purpose from my perspective.

  19. wald0

    How did I put words in your mouth when I never qouted you nor attempted to summarize or paraphrase your position? You posted a bunch of reasons to think these countries were worse than the U.S. in some way, I simply pointed out Americas involvement in the very system you say makes these countries what was it, "the most obese and entitled" or something to that nature. Besides all I said about these countries was that I would have to research it before I could buy that they were any more obese or entitled than Americans- how is that contradicting anything? Maybe read a little closer before you jump next time.
    The reason I said I would have to research it is because I generally don't just take someone's words as truth when all I know about them is that they posted on TDF and they are asserting something I find hard to beleive- call me crazy. In other words, I am not going to just take your word as truth either so don't bother trying to "enlighten" me oh great wise one- I'll take care of that myself. I am sure I can find the relevant material to base a sound opinion on. Thanks for your concern though, thats you- just going around enlightening folks.

  20. rljp

    If I had not worked in both countires I would not have commented. You would think you would have understood that and you would not have taken it differently. Or am I talking about myself?

  21. Hollie Baxter

    I loved this! well done to the filmmakers, touching and sensitive and in some parts humorous. A sad situation but such beautiful people. I love the one scene at the refugee station where a little girl has her hands protectively on her little sisters shoulders. Their hair unbrushed, their clothes vibrant and colorful. If only more Westerners would take the 30 minutes out of their day to watch this. Thank you

  22. KsDevil

    Just more evidence this world is a real mess and as long as everyone refuses to change their collective life styles, the world will continue being a mess.
    Addiction to drugs, money, power, and myth require extreme events to beak free. It seems only a world shattering event could possibly do that.
    Well, we know there are 2 world shattering events looming. Global climate change and the end of the oil that powers the current state of the world.
    In 200 years, perhaps, this madness will end.

  23. drinker69

    Cables from Kabul. How about instead of writing sad stories of the human condition in that toilet, you actually install Cables from Kabul. Build your infrastructure.

  24. dmxi

    very unprofessional to show one stoned afghan with a soft spot for young boys to create an atmosphere of it being common or even epidemic.maybe,they have a bigger pedophile problem due to cultural history
    but that was just sleazy journalism which evades any depth!i bet he got his green-card after the interview & is now running for office in washington!if 'arnie' can do it...

  25. x0x

    You are right! The labourers come from Mexico and nannies are from the Philippines in America. Both are injustices. Please don't make a hierarchy of the "most obese frivilous ", entitled countries in the world, based on your personal opinion and try to pass it off as fact.

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