Afghanistan Overview

Afghanistan Overview

Animals and Plants

What animals and plants are there in Afghanistan?

The consequences of the war are still evident in Afghanistan today and are causing problems for the flora and fauna. Important habitats have disappeared or been destroyed.

Afghanistan is characterized by steppe landscapes. So there are the steppe shrubs typical of this landscape. Dense stands of trees can only be found in a few regions, as many forests have been cut down over the past 25 years. Pistachio trees, for example, grow in the lowlands. At higher altitudes there are juniper bushes. Himalayan cedars, various types of pine, spruce, fir and birch also grow here. The flora that grows on the rivers looks a little different. Here you can also discover willows and poplars. In the subtropical There are also dates or figs in areas and bamboo grows.

Which animals live in Afghanistan?

Many different species of mammals used to live in Afghanistan. But animal populations have also declined due to the wars. Nevertheless, wolves, foxes and occasionally snow leopards still live in the mountains. The snow leopard is one of the endangered species. Even bears can still be found in the higher elevations of Afghanistan. Marmots and ibex also live in the high mountains. Wildcats can also be found here. Gazelles, hyenas and jackals can be discovered in the steppe landscapes. Other animals are wild sheep and wild goats. There are also various species of birds such as eagles and vultures, but also pheasants.

Afghanistan Animals


Poor, indebted country

Even before the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan and occupied the country (more on this under History and Politics) and the terrible civil wars ensued, the country was one of the least developed countries on earth. The situation improved a little after the fall of the Taliban in 2001, but the country is still one of the poorest countries. It is also heavily indebted. What do the people of Afghanistan live on?

What is grown in Afghanistan?

Only a small part of the country can be used for agriculture at all. Nevertheless, many Afghans live from what they grow, i.e. from agriculture. Mainly wheat and barley are grown, in the province of Herat rice is also planted, as is cotton.

Afghanistan’s fruits, such as grapes, apricots and peaches or apples, are very popular in the country itself, but the fruits are not exported abroad. Due to the great damage to the environment that occurred during the wars, less and less land can be used for agriculture. The floor has also become much more sensitive when there are times of great heat. Above all, there is a lack of water. In addition, there is the geographical location with the high and very high mountains, which makes agriculture difficult.


In 2006, over 90 percent of all opium was produced in Afghanistan. Opium is a nasty drug that makes people addicted. Opium is made from opium poppies, which are grown on large areas of Afghanistan. Opium is a drug that makes people feel intoxicated. It is very harmful and therefore prohibited.

Why do farmers plant so much poppy seeds?

Opium poppies are grown, from which the drug opium can be obtained. Although this is forbidden, many Afghan farmers cultivate the opium poppy despite the ban because they can earn a lot more with it than with other products. It is therefore very difficult to enforce the ban on cultivation. Only when people find alternatives that can also make enough money will there be a chance of reducing the levels of opium production. But this would not solve the problem either, because if the amount of opium falls, the price usually rises.

What else is there?

Nomads roam the country with their herds in Afghanistan. Usually it is sheep that they take care of. Horses are also bred in some areas.

Natural resources in Afghanistan

Afghanistan also has mineral resources such as iron, copper, natural gas and coal, as well as oil. Geologists have discovered other important mineral resources such as lithium, which could be used to make money. In addition there are gold, aluminum and the so-called “rare earths”. Afghanistan is also famous for a precious stone called lapis lazuli.

Afghanistan has to import many products and exports only a few products. This includes mainly dried fruits, but also carpets, medicinal plants and wool. Textiles are also made in Afghan factories.


Why are people fleeing Afghanistan?

For many years there was war in Afghanistan and people had to flee. Almost half of the people fled the villages, which incidentally suffered much more than the cities. Every ninth resident did not survive this war. Many people are unemployed today, far too many people live in the country without a job. That is why many families send their young men out of the country so that they can find work somewhere and then send money to their families.

There are always attacks

Then there is the danger posed by the Taliban, who are still carrying out attacks. Danger also threatens from drone attacks by the USA or the own army, which although fighting against the insurgents, but repeatedly hit innocents, including children.

Afghanistan: land of contrasts

As a country located in Asia according to a2zdirectory, Afghanistan is a country that defines many contrasts. In the country and especially in the remote areas of the mountains there are still a lot of traditional ideas and people live as they did hundreds of years ago. In big cities like Kabul, life is much more western, it is a modern city.

The differences are huge in Afghanistan

There are also rich people in Afghanistan who have often benefited from the wars. Above all, there are many poor people who are struggling to survive. There are people who have attended school and maybe even a university – and a great many illiterate people who can neither read nor write because they never had the opportunity to go to school.

Afghans trust the state little

The state regulates many things for us. If someone steals something from you or your parents, the person will be punished. The police take care of traffic offenders and if someone falls ill, the health insurance pays. Many people rely on the state when they are in an emergency.

It’s different in Afghanistan, where most people don’t trust the state at all. They don’t believe that the state can do things well for them. They prefer to rely on their family or clan and this has been a tradition for many centuries.

The family counts a lot in Afghanistan. You will always support and help each other, you will try to support each other in case of illness and old age and also to resolve disputes, which is not so easy because there are no objective courts.

That is why it is difficult to transfer our model of life and a functioning state to a country like Afghanistan. In addition, many people have often been disappointed by this state and prefer to focus on themselves. Now people are coming from the West and want to tell them how they now have to live “properly”, the Afghans don’t think that is so good.

It is not always easy to transfer your own idea of ​​what a state or a society should look like to other states.


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