Curation 1: Do the Local Afghan’s Want Us There?
In the picture below from Homepage Daily, a British soldier stands watch on patrol as an afghan boy behind him cries and looks at something off camera. The soldier in this picture seems to be looking off camera, and is apparently standing watch while on patrol in a village or town. However the key portion of this image is the young boy standing behind him. Clearly whatever it is the boy sees is disturbing him or scaring him. Whether or not that has to do with the presence of NATO forces is unclear however it can be inferred that the British soldiers are probably the ones frightening the boy. The boy is also behind a chain link barrier, which could also explain part of the reason why the young boy is upset.
The chain links that separate the boy from the soldier are important to note in terms of understanding what this picture is trying portray. We can interpret the chains to represent the emotional and ideological separation the locals feel from the westerners occupying their country. It shows that some of them don’t want soldiers occupying their homeland and tearing their world apart. The child also shows the innocence of much of the afghan population. The boy is alienated to what he sees around him, and probably does not understand why foreigners are occupying the place that he has called home.
Historically speaking, the afghans have been occupied by multiple groups since the Russian invasion of Afghanistan during the 1970’s. Foreign people are controlling their land against their will. The Afghans have survived a Russian attack, the Taliban occupation and now the American led NATO invasion along with countless offensives by the British years before. This picture is trying to show that the people are sick of living under foreign rule. They live in a state of fear because many of them, especially young kids, don’t know what it is that people want with Afghanistan or don’t understand why it is that other groups of people need to be there.
The picture shows the literal occupation of a town, but it also shows the effect that that occupation has had on Afghani people. A lot of them are sick and tired of being dictated and occupied as they have for the past 40 years. They don’t want to live in fear of raids on their houses and villages because of terrorism threats in Europe that have no effect on their simple lives as farmers. In this case of this picture, it utilizes chains to represent separation of ideology as well as the oppression of what the picture portrays as an innocent people.
The Homepage Daily picture presents a world in which the Afghan people do not appreciate the presence of NATO.