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Kite Runner & the History of Afghanistan

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    Kite Runner & the History of Afghanistan

  • Amir Is Born and Sofia Akrami Dies

    Amir Is Born and Sofia Akrami Dies
    Amir and Hassan both grew up without their mothers. Hassan's mother ran away "while [Amir's] mother hemorrhaged to death during childbirth," (6). Hassan and Amir grew up very close, each with only their father. While Hassan and Ali have a lot in common, Amir and Baba have trouble with their relationship. Amir blames himself for killing his mom and feels that his father is so distant because he blames him too.
  • Hassan Is Born

    Hassan Is Born
    Hassan is born in the shack outside Amir and Baba's house "just one year after my mother died giving birth to me," (6). Hassan was born on Baba's property and lived there for almost his entire childhood. He grew up with Amir and they were friends for that whole time. Amir thinks of Hassan's life in terms of his own, so he compares when Hassan was born to when he was born.
  • Afghan Communist Party Forms

    Afghan Communist Party Forms
    In secret, Afghanistan creates a communist party. The group has two "principal leaders... Babrak Karmal and Nur Mohammad Taraki," (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Military Coup Ends The Afghan Monarchy

    Military Coup Ends The Afghan Monarchy
    After the military coup overthrew the monarchy, "the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan, comes to power," (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Amir and Hassan Win Kite Flying Contest

    Amir and Hassan Win Kite Flying Contest
    Amir looks forward kitwflying contests each winter. This year, Amir's and another kite are the only ones left in the sky, after a strong breeze "[Amir] opened [his] eyes, saw the blue kite spinning wildly like a tire come loose from a speeding car," (66). Amir spends most of his time trying to please his father, so for Amir, the kite flying contest is the perfect time to get his approval. Baba wishes his son were more manly so by winning the contest he is able to prove that he can be strong.
  • Amir's 13th Birthday

    Amir's 13th Birthday
    For his 13th birthday, Baba threw Amir a huge party. He received many gifts from all the guests but he didn't want to keep any of them. He only chose to keep the notebook that Rahim Khan gave him because "[it] was the only one that didn't feel like blood money," (102). Amir knew that his father only threw him the party because he had won the kite flying contest. Amir felt that because he had left Hassan in the alley with Assef and returned the kite, it was the only reason Baba was proud of him.
  • President Khan Killed in Communist Coup

    President Khan Killed in Communist Coup
    After the president is killed in a coup operated by the communist party, "one of the founding members of the Afghan Communist Party, takes control of the country as president, and Babrak Karmal is named deputy prime minister." The new president signed a friendship treaty with the soviet union and in response "the guerrilla movement Mujahadeen is created to battle the Soviet-backed government." (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Afghans Flee from War-torn Country

    Afghans Flee from War-torn Country
    Due to the conditions in Afghanistan from the war, "some 2.8 million Afghans have fled from the war to Pakistan, and another 1.5 million have fled to Iran," (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Baba and Amir Arrive in California

    Baba and Amir Arrive in California
    After they arrived in California Baba soon realized that "[he] loved the idea of America. [But] It was living in America that gave him an ulcer," (125). While Amir adjusted quickly to life in Fremont, Baba had a harder time. Baba wasn't used to the mistrust that came from living in America. he also had to adjust to not having the money and status he had had in Afghanistan.
  • Amir Graduates High School

    Amir Graduates High School
    Amir graduated high school in 1983 at 20 years old. After the ceremony, Baba found him and told Amir that "[he was] moftakir...proud." Amir like "being on the receiving end of that look," (131). Even after all those years being told that Baba was proud of him was still something that Amir wanted. Even though that has gotten him in a lot of trouble in the past, Baba's admiration was still something he strived towards.
  • Osama bin Laden Makes Trip to Afghanistan

    Osama bin Laden Makes Trip to Afghanistan
    Osama bin Laden claimed to have traveled to Afghanistan after the Soviet invasion but there is no evidence of the trip. In efforts to aid anti-Soviet fighters, "Saudi Islamist Osama bin Laden makes his first documented trip to Afghanistan,"(https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Amir Meets Soraya

    Amir Meets Soraya
    Amir noticed Soraya right away, "her eyes, walnut brown and shaded by fanned lashes, met [his]. Held for a moment. Flew away," (140). He couldn't take his eyes off her and wanted to talk to her all the time. Seeing Soraya soon became the highlight of Amir's week.
  • Baba Gets Cancer

    Baba Gets Cancer
    After Baba had been sick for awhile Amir was finally able to get him to go to the doctor. Baba was quickly diagnosed with cancer, which as Amir soon found out "had many names. Baba's was called 'Oat Cell Carcinoma'. Advanced," (155). Baba, being the proud man he is, didn't want anyone to find out about his cancer. He and Amir kept it a secret for as long as they could. At the flea market surrounded by other Afghan's, Baba tries to preserve his pride so he will not be thought of differently.
  • Amir and Soraya Get Married

    Amir and Soraya Get Married
    At Amir and Soraya's wedding "[they] were seated around a table, Soraya and [Amir] dressed in green- the color of Islam...The mullah questioned the witnesses and read from the Koran." Although they are no longer in their native country, Amir and Soraya celebrate their culture and incorporate it into their daily life. While they do live in California, they have a traditional Afghan wedding, and most of their friends in California moved from Afghanistan like them.
  • al-Qaeda is Formed

    al-Qaeda is Formed
    Osama bin Laden and 15 Islamists form al-Qaeda as a way to continue "their jihad, or holy war, against the Soviets and others who they say oppose their goal of a pure nation governed by Islam." (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Baba Dies

    Baba Dies
    Soraya had taken to caring for Baba and brought his meds every night until one day he refused, claiming "there [was] no pain [that night]... Baba never woke up," (173). After being the most important person in Amir's life for many years Baba died. The author writes about this event showing how sudden yet final his death was to Amir.
  • Amir and Soraya Try To Have Kids

    Amir and Soraya Try To Have Kids
    Amir and Soraya try for many months without luck to conceive. After they grow tired of trying they visit a doctor and Soraya underwent a lot of testing; "Basal body temperatures, blood tests for every conceivable hormone, urine tests, something called a 'Cervical Mucus Test,' ultrasounds [etc.]" (185). Amir and Soraya wanted to have kids but found out they were unable to. The news put a strain on their marriage as they each felt the effects of infertility.
  • Rise of the Taliban

    Rise of the Taliban
    The Taliban is originally approved of by the Afghan people because of the way they upheld Islamic values. The Taliban make many changes very quickly including "[outlawing] cultivation of poppies for the opium trade, [cracking] down on crime, and [curtailing] the education and employment of women. Women are required to be fully veiled and are not allowed outside alone."(https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Clinton Orders Missle Attack On al-Qaeda

    Clinton Orders Missle Attack On al-Qaeda
    After al-Qaeda bombs two U.S. embassies in Africa "President Clinton orders cruise missile attacks against bin Laden’s training camps in Afghanistan. The attacks miss the Saudi and other leaders of the terrorist group." (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Hassan Dies

    Hassan Dies
    After all the time away Rahim Khan tells Amir about Hassan's life up until his death where the Taliban "took him to the street...and ordered him to kneel...and shot him in the back of the head," (219). Although Amir abandoned Hassan all those years ago, Hassan was still his closest friend whether he would admit it or not, so losing him brought back many feelings of regret that he had pushed down. His death also showed Amir what his country had become and the violence that occurs in it.
  • Taliban Destroys Buddha Statues in Afghanistan

    Taliban Destroys Buddha Statues in Afghanistan
    The Taliban carried out threats to destroy Buddhist statues, ignoring protests, "saying they are an affront to Islam," (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).
  • Rahim Khan Calls Amir

    Rahim Khan Calls Amir
    After leaving Afghanistan 20 years prior Rahim Khan calls Amir asking him to come to Pakistan to visit saying "there is a way to be good again," (192). With this call comes a flood of memories that Amir has been pushing back since he left Afghanistan. From this call, Amir also learns that Rahim Khan knew what happened and what he did to Hassan.
  • Amir Visits Rahim Khan

    Amir Visits Rahim Khan
    When Amir goes to Pakistan to visit Rahim Kahn he found that "a thing made of skin and bones pretending to be Rahim Khan opened the door," (197). After not seeing Rahim Khan for almost 20 years Amir is surprised at how his friend looks so frail and weak. Rahim Khan is a tired old man now and that shocked Amir as he was half expecting the vivacious man he grew up with.
  • Amir Learns of His True Relationship To Hassan

    Amir Learns of His True Relationship To Hassan
    Rahim Khan attempts to convince Amir to get Sohrab by explaining that they are related because "[Ali's first wife] left [Ali] childless and married a man in Khost. She bore him three daughters," (222). Rahim khan explains to Amir why his dad has always been so close to Hassan and cared so much for him. For Amir, this explained a lot about his dad and why Rahim Khan wanted so badly for him to get Sohrab from foster care in Kabul.
  • 9/11

    When four commercial airplanes were hijacked and crashed into the "World Trade Center Towers in New York, the Pentagon outside Washington, D.C., and a Pennsylvania field, killing thousands." The leading suspect of the attack was "bin Laden, the Saudi exile believed to be hiding in Afghanistan," (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/asia-jan-june11-timeline-afghanistan).