Afghanistan/Kite Runner Timeline - Cole Fletchall-Silva

Timeline created by 21silvac66
  • Hassan is Raped

    Assef makes Hassan chose between his loyalty for Amir and his own safety when threatening him. After choosing to stay loyal, Assef rapes Hassan. All this time Amir watches. To reassure himself that it was reasonable by thinking "He was just a Hazara" (77). This acceptance of a racially motivated idea allows for Amir to dismiss his sin of acting selfishly reveals much of Amir's character. Most notably, it demonstrates his immense covet to be appreciated by Baba.
  • Hassan and Ali Leave

    After finding out that Amir watched Hassan be raped, Ali notifies Baba that he and Hassan are leaving. Baba responds unexpectedly by doing something Amir "had never seen him do before: He cried.. 'Please,' Baba was saying" (107). This further characterizes Baba by showing his core value: family. Baba happily ditches his reputation as a strong, unstoppable man to show his great care for his family and grief if he were without them.
  • Soviet Union Attacks

    The Soviet Union begins its attack on Afghanistan. They do this by parachuting into Afghanistan's capital (Kabul) with the help of the current president. This would be strange but Barak Karmal became president because of a coup "...the Soviets engineered... as a pretext to replace Hafizullah Amin, the Afghan leader, who had lost their trust" (NYT). The Soviets defended the parachute by saying they came due to a plea for help by the government.
  • Amir and Baba Leave Afghanistan

    Baba, Amir, and several other people ride to Pakistan after choosing to leave the USSR occupied Kabul. Rahim Khan scammed the travelers so that he could get more money; thus, they must wait a while for the truck to transport them to Pakistan. Finally, they arrive and Kamal dies; hence, his father "shoves [a gun] barrel in his mouth" (124) and shoots himself. This reinforces the theme of family in the Kite Runner and its importance. Some individuals rather death over a world without family.
  • Baba's Funeral

    Baba dies a peaceful death in his sleep. Following it, he is buried at a funeral that attracted many old acquaintances he assisted. This gave Amir a realization: "Baba couldn't show [him] the way anymore; [he would] have to find it on [his] own. The thought terrified [him]" (174). Amir comes to understand how alone he is now that his last close family member is dead. The death of Baba also introduces Amir to adulthood; he has to make decisions on his own and now may act with complete autonomy.
  • Amir and Soraya Want a Child

    Amir and Soraya want offspring; however, their many attempts have not worked. After testing themselves for fertility to no success for Soraya, they "talked at home about adoption. Soraya was ambivalent at best" (186). This is one of many points of foreshadowing, for later on in the book, Amir and Soraya adopt Sohrab. Perhaps Soraya's willingness to adopt Sohrab when she was previously opposed to the idea is that she knows the child has genetic relation to her family, legitimizing it for her.
  • Soviet Union Leaves

    The Soviet Union leaves Afghanistan after losing "...roughly 15,000 lives and undisclosed billions of rubles...while undermining the cherished image of an invincible Soviet Army" (NYT) Overall, the attack was a huge failure. The peace talks were moderated by the United Nations.
  • Sanaubar Comes Back to Hassan

    In Kabul, Sanaubar stumbles up to Baba's old residence. Hassan and Farzana take care of her and Sanaubar deliver's their baby, Sohrab. Sanaubar took great care of Sohrab, for "He became the center of her existence. She sewed clothes for him, built him toys from scraps of wood, rags, and dried grass. When he caught a fever, she stayed up all night" (211). Sanaubar both represents themes of family and atonement. She atones for leaving Hassan by caring for Sohrab as she wished she had for Hassan.
  • Fallout of the Soviet Conflict

    Following the end of Afghanistan's war with the USSR, its power became "...anarchically divided among competing warlords and individual fiefdoms" (NYT). Of these many groups, the Taliban would soon end up on top.
  • The Rise of the Taliban

    Although just starting out as a small group led by Mullah Omar fighting warlords, the Taliban quickly grew to have "...nearly 12,000 followers and was rolling up the warlords to the north and east" (NYT). By capitalizing on the instability in Afghanistan after the war with the Soviets, the Taliban grew in followers with ease.
  • Pakistan Aids the Taliban

    The help of Pakistan was crucial in its attempt to fight the other warlords. Aids Pakistan sent were "...arms, money and supplies to Mullah Omar's men, as well as military advisers to help guide them in battle" (NYT).
  • The Taliban Takes Over Afghanistan

    After taking over Afghanistan, the Taliban established significant laws such as "...banning movies and music and forcing women out of schools and into all-enveloping burqa clothing" (NYT). All of these are heavily Islam inspired.
  • Hassan Dies

    The Taliban shoots Hassan after he resists. Being told this, Amir showed legitimate grief by "[whispering] 'No. No. No.' over and over again" (219). Part of this grief is him acknowledging he will never be able to apologize to Hassan. He understands that he will never achieve full closure with Hassan.
  • Amir Visits Rahim Khan

    Rahim Khan tells Amir Hassan is his brother. Amir is shocked by the revelation and "stormed out the apartment [angry that he is] thirty-eight years old and [he has] just found out [his] whole life is one big... lie" (223). The Kite Runner often plays with the idea of destroying utopia, such as how Kabul turns into the center of decades of war. This is illustrated here because Rahim Khan, Baba, and Ali were all shown to be honest an trustworthy up until now.
  • Amir Visits the Home of an Average Afghan

    Wahid provides Amir food. Amir notices that Wahid's sons were eyeing his watch when they were really eyeing his food. Hence, Amir gives his watch to the children. Later, he overhears Wahid and his wife arguing and finds out the kids "hadn't been staring at the watch at all. They'd been staring at [his] food" (241). The quote shows the squalor of Afghanistan, for parents cannot even feed their children. This was the first time Amir found out first hand how troubled Afghanistan really is.
  • Amir Visits the Afghani Orphanage

    Amir and Farid go to an orphanage to ask the director questions. The director reveals that he lets a Talib take one child every month or two, angering Farid so he beats the director up. Farid stops because he "saw the children. They were standing silently by the door, holding hands, some of them crying" (256). Another theme of the book is the power of youth, shown to literally save a man's life. All adults know at least one kid; thus, the sight of one reminds them not to ruin their innocense.
  • Taliban Stadium

    Farid and Amir find themselves at a stadium to talk to a Taliban official. The situation quickly turns south when it turns out the stadium also showcases brutal executions. One of the executed people were turned to "a mangled mess of blood and shredded rags" (271). The body symbolizes what has happened to Afghanistan: the Taliban caused a mess of blood and shredded rags by hurting infrastructure. What remains is the dead corpse of a nation.
  • Amir Meets with Assef

    Amir goes alone to meet the Taliban leader (Assef). Assef challenges Amir to a fight; if Amir wins, he can take Sohrab. Amir admits that he does not "know if [he] gave Assef a good fight. [He does not] think [he] did... That was the first time [Amir] fought anyone" (288). Earlier in the Kite Runner, Assef tells Amir he will get revenge and this foreshadowing comes true during the fight. Although, Amir gives no care, for his beating finally atones for his sins.
  • Amir Recovers

    Over the course of several days, Amir recovers from his fight with Assef. His time there was put to an end due to "The Taliban [having] friends here. They will start looking for [Amir]" (304). Amir's willingness to enter a war zone, talk to the leader of the Taliban, being beaten badly, and be on the run from the Taliban show a character arch for Amir. As a child, he would not even get in a fight for his dearest friend,
  • Sohrab Attempts to Commit Suicide

    After being told he may be put back into an orphanage, Sohrab slashes his wrists. The only reason he survived is because of his youthfulness. This was foreshadowed by a receptionist who commented on her boss's manners with, "'Poor Ray. He hasn't been the same since his daughter died.' [Amir] raised an eyebrow. 'Suicide'" (332). Amir would soon find himself in the shoes of the man he was so angered with. He understands his pain while waiting to see if Sohrab died, for Amir nearly loses his mind.
  • Effects of 9/11

    Following September 11 of 2001, the United States increased its role in Afghanistan due to "...an attack on the World Trade Center in New York" (NYT). Its first order of business was trying to capture the orchestrater of 9/11, Bin Laden. After Afghanistan refused to hand him over, the United States attacked Afghanistan and successfully "... drove the Taliban out of the major Afghan cities" (NYT).
  • Sohrab Smiles

    Sohrab was a spectator of his own life until he was introduced to Afghan kite competitions. After winning one, Sohrab smiles and Amir asks if he wants him to chase a falling kite to which he "saw him nod. 'For you, a thousand times over,' [Amir said]" (371). The dialogue Amir speaks is the same as what Hassan used to say to Amir. This signifies that as a last way to atone for his wrongdoings to Hassan, Amir will atone by treating Sohrab with his utmost loyalty.
  • The New Afghan Government

    A very unpopular leader in Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, "...was named chairman of an interim government that replaced the defeated Taliban" (NYT). He was later elected for a five-year term. Additionally, the Bush Administration had very favorable opinions on him.
  • New Head of the US Central Command

    After the Taliban regained power and a new administration was elected in America, "General Petraeus, the Iraq commander who recieved much of the cred for the succes of the surge there, had taken charge of the United States Central Command" (NYT) His role was to be in charge of the US military in Afghanistan, Iraq, and places nearby that area.
  • The US Announces Increased Effort in Afghanistan

    The new president of the United States, Barack Obama, "...announced his plan to deploy 30,000 additional troops" (NYT). Moreover, he also pledged to stay in the war until 2011, although that estimated date was later changed to 2014.
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    The Soviet Invasion and After

    The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, causing instability in the region for decades. Even so, the Soviets lose partly due to US support of the Afghans.
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    The Taliban Takeover

    A small group quickly takes over Afghanistan, is supported by Pakistan, is when Al Qaeda and bin Laden comes to Afghanistan, and Afghanistan's public opinion is ruined.
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    Post 9/11 Invasion

    George W. Bush fights the Taliban and is successful. The Taliban retreats to border of Pakistan. New leader gets in power but is not popular and Taliban rise up again and takes back cities in Afghanistan and some regions of Pakistan.
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    Obama's War

    US increases involvement in Afghanistan, says it wants to end conflict but predicts to continue fighting until 2014. Obama's administration was split on what to do about Afghanistan.