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Afghanistan - The Toughest Battle
Ruling Afghanistan's airwaves
Al Jazeera talks to a young DJ hoping to reach out to Afghanistan's youth.
Last Modified: 16 May 2007 15:04 GMT

Massoud Sanjer in his Kabul studio

Massood Sanjer is a young disc jockey working for Arman FM in Kabul.

This is his account of his time working under the Taliban and his hope that the nation's young people will find inspiration from the country's new media outlets.

I have a four hour show, it starts from 6am until 10am. But I don't know how the four hours go. It is like five minutes for me.

People like to listen to Shakira, to Jennifer Lopez, to Enrique Iglesias. But the high percentage of music we play is Afghan music - I love it!

On our phone lines this guy told me: "It's been three months I've been trying and I can't get through [to the station] because it's very busy."

These phones are non-stop ringing. More than 13 to 15 million people are listening to the Arman FM morning show.

Under the Taliban

The Afghan people do not have entertainment that much. The only entertainment people get is listening to [us] or watching TV.

Massood also worked in radio under
the Taliban

You can't even compare the job I am doing now with the job I was doing with the Taliban.

I was doing the English news for them. So they were giving us the Dari and the Pashto text and we, the team of six people, had to translate it exactly word by word, sentence by sentence.

I had friends who made mistakes. One of them I remember was tied in a container for three days.

He made a mistake in a story about one of the Taliban leaders dying. Instead of saying 'with much sorrow we got the news that someone has died' he said 'with much happiness'. So there he was in the container!

A new Dubai?

Young people could not express their feelings during the rule of the Taliban, especially in the media. It was very hard.

But now people have got the chance to talk on radio. We talk to the listener as a friend, giving them personalities, the personalities of Afghanistan. So, we say you have a chance to do something good for Afghanistan.

I have never wanted to leave Afghanistan. The only place I have been is Dubai and it was my first trip outside of Afghanistan.

If I and other young people and the educated go out of Afghanistan, who is healing this country?

We have to get this country like Dubai. That is my dream, really.

Source:
Al Jazeera
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