Afghanistan, April 2011 as presented by: Boston Big Picture

Life expectancy in Afghanistan is but 45 years. It has the world's second-highest infant mortality rate. Only 12% of Afghan women are literate. It is the world's largest producer of opium. Soon it will have been occupied by foreign militaries for ten years, which followed years of Taliban rule, which followed years of civil war, which followed years of Soviet military occupation. Widespread corruption mutes hopes for the immediate future. The death of Osama bin Laden further clouds future American involvement in the country. Gathered here in our monthly collection of photographs from Afghanistan are images of the U.S. military mission, the toll of violence on civilians, and daily life in the country of just under 30 million. An Afghan girl practices the martial arts with a sword at a Wushu training club in Injil, Herat province, west of Kabul, April 6. Afghan children play on an amusement ride in Kabul April 17. Village elder Haji Amir Mohammad Agha presents a rose to U.S. Army Spc Charli Johnson during a visit by Afghan and U.S. soldiers in Jelawar in the Arghandab Valley north of Kandahar April 18.

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