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Sunday, 10 August 2008 19:42

Who We Are & What We Do

Salaam. Mich Rabushka and Andrzej Lysik became disillusioned with the Western capitalism model and its politics and decided to do something different. They have been selling ethnic jewelry and textiles since 1982. Mich holds a BA in Government from Wesleyan University and an MA in Economics from Trinity College. They reside in the U.S.

Pashtun bead work, modeled by Bri.

We are dedicated to helping displaced Afghanis who have fled the series of wars since the Soviet invasion of 1979. During the last Afghan war even more civilians were displaced, externally and internally, adding to the huge numbers of refugees already dislodged from over 30 years of constant war. At one time Afghanistan represented the world's largest refugee population according to the UN High Commission on Refugees. Many Afghanis who had left their country went looking for work in Pakistan, Iran, India, Indonesia, and the US. Many have returned home to Afghanistan. In 2010 the US-Afghan war has spilled over into Pakistan and the geopolitical situation has become much more unstable and complicated.

We are striving to stimulate demand by creating a robust export market for their hand made and recycled goods. We believe that it is better to sell ethnic jewelry and clothing rather than guns and poppies. Research and read the story about Marjan the Lion, a true Afghan hero. His name means "precious stone" in Afghan Farsi. Remember that the concept of true jihad starts within your self - it is every human being's struggle between good and evil. Any other type of jihad is not cool. Allah sees everything. Allahu Akbar!

Famous blue mosque at Mazar

Famous blue mosque (masjid) at Mazar-e-sharif

One of the Islamic world's most sacred buildings, the Shrine of Hazrat Ali is the main tourist attraction of Mazar-e-sharif in the north of Afghanistan. Afghanistan's second largest city is about 400 kilometers northwest of Kabul and is in better shape than much of the country as it managed to avoid most of the war, existing as an autonomous region until the late 1990s. Getting there by road involves a trip over the Salang Pass (3,363 meters) and through the mile and a half-long Salang Tunnel (opened 1964) which is preceded by another three miles of mini-tunnels (basically half-tunnels designed to keep snow and rocks and other things off the road). As one drives into the mountains the condition rapidly deteriorates. Potholes, bomb craters, blown-up bridges, rocks, overturned tanks and mine fields lined the way.

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