Welcome To The Gorgeous Region Of Afghanistan That Has Been Untouched By Decades Of War


Nearly a decade into the war in Afghanistan, photographer Benjamin Rasmussen was tired of the usual media narrative of suicide bombings, corruption, and insurgency.


In 2010, Rasmussen's sister was working in the aid and development community in Afghanistan. But the only headlines he ever saw about the country focused on the ongoing war.

He felt like the American media was failing to educate the US public about how complex Afghanistan actually was, from its multitudes of tribes and ethnicities to its deep history and varied landscapes.

When he heard about the Wakhan Corridor, a narrow strip of land in the far northeast of Afghanistan bordering Tajikistan, Pakistan, and Western China, Rasmussen knew he had to document it.

In a harsh, beautiful landscape bounded by the Hindu Kush mountains in the south, around 12,000 Afghanis live off the land, unaffected by the Taliban, the US, or Hamid Karzai. The region's geographical isolation, harsh climate, and lack of strategic value has kept all troops - Afghani as well as foreign - out of the area for decades.


Rasmussen visited in the summer of 2010 to document the strange and beautiful world. He shared some photos with us here, but you can check out more at his website.