Fornication, bare flesh and a descent into Western decadence — these are Afghan definitions of democracy that expose how little the foreign concept has permeated the national psyche as elections near.
Afghanistan will vote August 20 in its second “democratic” presidential election but centuries of tribalism, decades of war and the draconian legacy of the Taliban ensure that confusion still reigns over what voting will bring.
“Western democracy is freedom and fornication. This is democracy for Western, American and European people and it is developing the same way here,” said Wasim, a 28-year-old waiter in a Kabul kebab restaurant.
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