The Rugmaker of Mazar-E-Sharif Summary

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The Rugmaker of Mazar-E-Sharif 1 Singing in the Wilderness Najaf Mazari is in the November section of the Woomera detention camp. Remembers mother, older brother Abdul Ali, sister Latifeh. In the winter cold surrounded by bars he sings a New Year Hazari song of hope. A shepherd’s song although he is a rugmaker. He feels he makes a connection with the officials. ‘I think of the red flowers around the mosque at Mazar-e- Sharif. I think of how they bloom each year, no matter how many rockets explode over them.’ p.6 Hope endures despite conflict. 2 Fire in the Night Some history of conflict in Afghanistan. ‘Afghanistan has been a type of explosion laboratory over the past three decades.’ Details of the move from the village of Shar Shar to town of Mazar-e-Sharif in 1980 after Najaf’s father’s death Afghanis haven’t changed over hundreds of years – working on the land. People can survive conflict. The wisdom of Gorg Ali: ‘Anger is a hammer….It has only one task-to strike hard and strike again. And your enemy’s anger is just he same.’…he could see how easily people argued themselves into a situation that could only end with guns being loaded and knives being drawn.’ p.11 – pointlessness of war ‘..feeling secure was never a long term thing..’ p.11 Bombing of his house in 1985. Younger brother Rosan Ali dies, as does brother in law Hassan. Najaf felt sorrow for his mother losing another son after death of Gorg Ali her eldest in the past. Najaf feels sad at losing his younger brother – they had fought yet he loved him and believed that he could have ‘become a brother I could be proud of.’ p.17 There can be constructive results of conflict. 3 Shoes Life in the camp. Najaf only has one shoe. Powerless and separated from his wife and baby he is sad. Conflict in the camp between different nationalities, because people are bored

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