It was very interesting to read your article on the recently released book, “Poetry of the Taliban.” Though its publication has sparked off a series of debates and conspiracies, as an avid reader it is thrilling and eye-opening to read the words of Taliban fighters and get an insight into their way of thinking and perspectives, through the use of poetry. Poetry is deeply embedded in Afghan culture and dates back to the tradition of Persian and Pashtu literature.
Citizens around the world are constantly reminded of the ruthless nature and violent tactics of Taliban fighters through disturbing images, which reflect this group’s mindset. At the same time however, this book doesn’t attempt to provide a defense of Taliban actions but rather provokes the reader to abandon all pre-conceived notions and absorb the vividness and elegance of the poetry with an open mind.
I think most people would be able to enjoy this book, even though it is translated from Pashtu thus losing most of its finesse. While the Taliban worldview and ideology is blatantly expressive, it is nonetheless a wonderful initiative undertaken by the publishers to present to the world, a Taliban perspective through rich, elegant poetry.
Mehzur Baksh Kabul, Afghanistan