Skip to comments.Betting big on a citadel for the Afghan elite
Posted on 12/11/2013 8:36:35 AM PST by Pan_Yan
If Mohammed Ibrahim Caravan smells fear about Afghanistan's future, he doesn't show it. He strolls around like a country squire in the glittering new gated community he helped build, dressed in a spotless white shalwar kameez tunic, stylish shades and polished wingtips.
"Worried?" the 28-year-old asked. "Hah not me. I'm confident in the future. If you don't invest in your own country, who will?"
Caravan's company is plunging $160 million into the family-run Saleem Caravan City, with its rows of salmon-colored villas with balconies and rose gardens, like some ersatz Miami Beach condo community. He's moved his family into a lavish 7,500-square-foot mansion with a pool, hot tub and guest kitchen.
Two hundred of the 300 homes in the 160-acre complex have already sold, Caravan says. Buyers love the swimming pool, the two mosques, the school, the shopping arcade and especially the security walls, augmented by a high-tech security system and armed guards.
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
I think they get more cash from opium than from US aid.
I would hope that the armed guards are more trustworthy than the Afghan army is.
Yeah, but cash from the drug trade has to be used for some economic activity: paying farmers, harvesters, refiners, delivery costs, smuggling fees ...
US slush money goes straight into Dubai bank accounts.
Their big cash crop since before Julias was Caesar. Literally thousands of years.
I would guess that the developer doesn't use our diversity rules when making hires. I would probably bet that most of the guards are from the same clan and that clan leader lives in the compound.
There will be heads rolling soon. Thousands of heads. It will be more disgraceful than the evacuation of Saigon when the last U.S. aircraft departs.
That’s the only possible way it could work. Surrounded by rings of tribal loyalty, with the headman in the big house on top of the hill.
Several years ago there was a report showing that 98% of the security budget in Afghanistan was based on foreign aid or foreign direct support.
Another report showed the security industry was over 50% of the cash economy in the country.
If foreign governments don’t pony up the cash, the transition period will turn into another civil war due the collapse of any and every economic activity that requires a relatively secure and safe socioeconomic business environment.
In short, the Caravan City development is the redoubt of the future Pakistani-styled hereditary kleptocracy.
It’s actually not that nice. As stated in the article, it’s a fortress for the kleptocracy’s middle managers and gov/mil bureaucrats.
I’m sure they are very nice by Afghanistan standards. Remember, until we invaded the country they didn’t even have a single operating railroad line. Mud huts, goats, pedophiles and poppy fields.
Thanks for the link.
The construction in Afghanistan by Uncle Sugar has increased recently. There are all kinds of new construction projects started in the past few months. I don’t know if that is agencies spending what’s left of their accounts, investment in staying there, or simply project finally getting started that were funded last year, but the construction in certainly not winding down as though we are preparing to leave.
Completely illogical and bordering on insane. I guess that’s the new normal though.