Voices From Afghanistan, Sun., Sept 11, 1 p.m.

Host Anand Gopal is an investigative journalist and author who covers Afghanistan, Egypt, and other international hotspots. Anand was based in Afghanistan for more than 3 years writing for the Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, and Foreign Policy Magazine. He's currently working on a book about the war in Afghanistan, to be published by Henry Holt and Co. in 2012.

Part 1

What's next for Afghanistan

We hear Afghan perspectives on the impending U.S. troop drawdown. Also, journalist Matthieu Aikins shares his outlook on security and the economy in Afghanistan.

Afghan Women Protest Harassment

Reporter Tabasum Wolayat shares what it's like to be an Afghan woman in Kabul and initiatives by Afghan women's youth organizations to protest sexual harassment on the streets.

Part 2

Building schools for Girls

Shabana Basij-Rasikh explains her efforts to build the first girl’s high school in her father’s province of Laghman.

Debate: Should the Military be Doing Development

Journalist Pratap Chatterjee leads a discussion about what role Provincial Reconstruction Teams, or PRTs, should play in developing Afghanistan. Guests include Marlin Hardinger, a U.S. Foreign Service Officer who served on the PRT base in Helmand from 2007-2010, and Paul O'Brien, Oxfam America’s Vice President for Policy and Advocacy.

Bottom-up Accountability

Reporter Elva Narcia explains an effort to give Community Development Councils tools to track money spent on development projects through social audits facilitated by the Aga Khan Development Network.

Questioning Quick Fixes

The U.S. Institute for Peace's Andrew Wilder has been working in Afghanistan and Pakistan fro more than 35 years. He says the problem with aid has as much to do with Washington DC as Kabul.

Down the Toilet?

Reporter Tom A. Peter warns that Kabul has a major sanitation problem on its hands.

Part 3

Mr. Pasun's Garden

Journalist Shafiq Hakimi introduces us to a man trying to create a pocket of green amongst the dust and concrete of Kabul. Katib Pasun works with Afghanistan Education Projects (AEP)to edit radio dramas that try to help Afghans cope with problems like urbanization. In this story, he explains his effort to create a community garden behind his apartment building.

Beyond the Bubble

Anand Gopal continues his conversation with journalist Matthieu Aikens questioning common narratives about what's going wrong in Afghanistan — and what reporters can learn by getting out of Kabul.

Joking for Peace

Following the Muhammad cartoon riots of 2006, Zach Warren went in search of "weapons of mock destruction" in Afghanistan. He shares his experiences cataloging Afghan jokes and wondering if humor may have potential as a tool for diplomacy. Zach Warren is a Doctoral student in Psychology at Georgetown University and teaches circus arts at the Afghan Mobile Mini Circus for Children.


Kentucky Boy Solves Rubik's Cube In Record Time

A 14-year-old boy from Lexington, Ky., has solved a Rubik's Cube in less than five seconds. As Guinness World Records declares this a record-breaker, we hear how NPR covered a Rubik's Cube competition in 1981.
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