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Top 10 things you didn’t know about Taliban

by Carl Frederik Waage Beck on september 27, 2010

I don’t get out much these days, as I usually stay at home to take care of the kids.
Having finished a few paintings in the “War is Coming Home” series, something got me thinking about the lives of the Talibans or talibs if you will.

What are they like, and what’s the deal, you know – really… Some light research ensued and, tadaah!

So here goes – The top 10 list of things you probably didn’t know about Taliban:

10: The Taliban consists mainly of Mujahideen and as it were, former allies of the West.
9: Many Talibs actually do smoke, regardless of what Mullah Omar says,
8: The majority of the Taliban movement is made up of Pashtun tribemembers practicing the moral code “Pashtun Wali” which has hospitality as one of it’s cornerstones.
7: The Taliban established an Ombudsman in 2009.
6: While not in combat, the Taliban enjoy a good game of rock-throwing.
5: The Taliban numbered roughly 45.000 in 2001, 11.000 in 2008 and 36.000 in 2010.
4: Ahmad Shah Massoud (Leader of the opposing United Front/Northern Alliance) stated in 2001 that without help from Pakistan, the Taliban would not be able to sustain their military campaign for a year – Since 2001 Pakistan has received 11,5 bln. USD in military aid from the United States.
3: On october 4 2001, Pakistan refused an offer from the Taliban to have Osama Bin Laden handed over for trial on the grounds that Pakistan could not guarantee his safety.
2: Few Talibs have ever read the Koran, but rather learn it by heart verbally.
1: Since 2004 the Taliban has been known as the “Islamic Insurgency”.

I find myself just a tad better informed now, hope you do too.

The painting below “Forever after Silent” is the third in the series “War is Coming Home”. If you’re from anywhere around Copenhagen you might recognize the backdrop.

Enjoy!

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Fog Of War

by Carl Frederik Waage Beck on september 19, 2010

Some days have passed since my last post.
I have been busy taking care of the twins + working my “day job” in the the Danish Defence. I earn my living there briefing up soldiers on cultural awareness and how to communicate in a manner that creates friends rather than more enemies.

I did find some time for a new series of paintings based on a piece I did earlier this year.
That painting was of Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen, featuring a burnt-out Humvee in front of the parading Royal Lifeguards.

The point of this series is to try to imagine what it would be like if the theatre of war was Denmark rather than some remote country like Afghanistan.
To many people in Denmark, the conflict in Afghanistan is costly, and hard to understand.
It’s remote, and whatever news-stories emerge on the evening news are hard to relate to.

What would happen if every news-story related to a location in Denmark?
The second painting in the series is posted below. It’s titled “Power Disruption” and features Christiansborg – home of the Danish parliament, with a burned-out bus in front. Enjoy!
Power Disruption, 60x80 cm, Acrylic Paint on Canvas, 2010, 6000 kr.

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