An Iranian Student Travels From The Great War Leaders

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An Iranian student travels to Afghanistan, explores its legends, and loses his heart to the place... What shall I speak of, in Afghanistan? It 's snow-capped ranges, like the Hindu Kush or the high mountains of Badakhshan, in whose folds hide the fabled ruby mines? The walnuts of the East, as large as a man 's fist; or the grapes as big as a plum? The priceless carpets of intricate design, or the humble rugs of the nomads, woven with love and skill? The conquering armies of the great war-leaders, who overturned proud India, not once but three score times; the wise sages of Ghazna, of Balkh, of Herat, of Turkestan? You see, my friends, I have travelled throughout that happy land, drunk from its crystal mountain streams, sung with its enchanting bards, watched the wrestling masters of far Khanabad, slept in the hujra, the guest-room which even the smallest village offers free of any charge. I have gorged myself from the great platters of the divine palao, tasted the apricots, the melons, the apples and the pomegranates which are without compeer. And I have shared the hard-boiled egg and dry flat bread of the mountain shepherd in his hut. How shall anyone who has had such experiences ever hope to bring them to you, hope to choose something which will sum up- Afghanistan? Before I went there, I had heard-as you, too, have heard- of its fierce highlanders who practise the

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