Saturday, October 6, 2007

From Italy Back to Kabul with Enthusiasm or With Fear?

Soon I will be going back home. I think life is hard and harsh sometimes. When we face censorship, difficult sometimes. When we cannot work as we want, being threatened; sometimes when not sleeping at all the whole night because of threats and intimidation, but still very lovely and very sweet with all the harshness and difficulties in my lovely Afghanistan. And I am happy to carry new experiences to my hometown for the other young Afghan filmmakers.

The first day I arrived in Venice, Italy I was really impressed, seeing a whole city in water with ancient buildings existing from centuries back, in the same brownish color with many ships and boats and tourists in this city.

Seeing many tourists I thought it may have been nice not only for me, but maybe every new visitor would have the same feeling as me.

But after one week when I got used to the beauty of the city, I was very busy with lessons, the Venice Film Festival and did not have time for real enjoyment of the city. I still enjoyed the workshop itself, meetings with famous and well-known filmmakers of the world and the film screenings at the festival.

Later on, when I received the comment from the horrible “almujahid” on my blog and his email in my mailbox it was really a bang for me which shocked me with fear.

And thereafter I did not enjoy anything at all in Venice, except talking with my parents and family members on the phone about their safety and security.

This became a real trouble I felt, which made me a bit sad among the other participants of the workshop and led me towards loneliness and thinking in the bathroom under the shower for the rest of the days.

And now when getting ready to leave Italy back to Kabul, I break my heart into two halves, keep one half in Italy, and take the other with me back to my homeland. The one remaining in Italy will contain memories of EIUC Summer School professors, students, the directors I met in Venice Film Festival and friends I made especially there. The other part will be in my hometown, with my family, with my friends back at home in the middle of dust, fire and hardships.

Now on I have started imagining the moment when my plane will be landing in Kabul, what will exactly happen to me? Will I really be killed as soon as I arrive there? Or will I have some time more to survive and live? Well, God knows better, but I still believe that will definitely happen and nobody can escape or stop it when something is already written in my fate and predestination! May be for me it is written, death at 25 caused by writing something about the Taliban and making a film about them?!

The worst things trickle in my mind are the questions; what will happen to the rest of my plans that I already made if I die this soon? Who will take care of my family? What will happen to education of my younger brothers? Who will represent the Academy of Art of Afghanistan?

Who will manage the international coordination of young Afghan filmmakers? Of course there will be someone to do all these things instead of me one day, but how long will it take?

How many more years will be spent that all these things would shape from the beginning which already took me at least four years to reach this level?!

About my family I do not care if I die, they may less suffer because of me and my activities and my second brother will take care of the family after me. But I worry about my bigger tasks, the responsibilities that I undertook for my society for the young Afghan filmmakers, Academy of Arts, Radio television programs and many other bigger tasks.

Sometimes I go thinking, I am walking in the streets of Karte Sey right in Pol e Sorkh cross road where I get off the bus and go to my work in NDI every morning. I imagine I am in the ground floor of Maiwand Restaurant where I and Mehdi (my friend who nowadays works on a documentary about Afghan journalists in danger) sometimes went there for tea or juice drinks and discussed our film works.

Sometimes I imagine that I am in Pohanzaye Honarhaye Zeba with my friends and classmates (The Fine Arts Faculty of Kabul University) where I study cinema and theatre night shift there. But you know all imaginings are not more than blinking pictures in one’s mind, nothing else I can do except repeat them in my mind.

And now when I remember the time when I was departing from Kabul to Italy, I posted the information about our trip titled “from Kabul to Venice with message of brotherhood” and now when I am moving back towards Afghanistan I am carrying good memories of Italy but with fear of being killed.

Now let’s go back to Kabul. I am sure if I live longer when I go back, soon I will start working on my numerous projects including the important one “The Keys to paradise” for which I was already seriously threatened to death; but still no worries.

So sorry to take your time, but want to tell you what I will be doing within one to two next years;

The project proposals that I submitted to the EIUC Summer School I attended recently are short documentaries about freedom of expression titled “ Afghan Diaries.” I have a short and a feature fiction film about the suicide attacks of the Taliban for which I am still looking for co-producers.

Want to remind again that the purpose of this writing is not to talk about my self but just to let you know how difficult it is to work for freedom of expression in Afghanistan.

Although up to this moment, some questions are still unresolved for me for instance; when I know that I am threatened to death, is it not foolish to go into the fire on my own feet?

Or if I stay here in Italy will I be able to do all what I did in Kabul? Or at least will I be able to pursue my higher education here in Italy?

Therefore I want your comments and your suggestions and I again invite you to my blog. Please read it frequently and leave your comments on my writings. This, for the purpose of supporting freedom of expression in the emerging democracy of Afghanistan.

God bless you all.

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