Satellite TV Comes to Kabul

Has the U.S.-led military intervention in Afghanistan caused the Taliban to cut itself off from the West?

October 10, 2001

Has the U.S.-led military intervention in Afghanistan caused the Taliban to cut itself off from the West?

Satellite TV dishes have suddenly sprouted in Kabul and Kandahar. Having long banned TV as “a source of moral corruption,” and punished offenders, Taliban leaders have now installed their own TV sets to stay in touch with the news — via CNN.

They no longer make do with the BBC World Service on radio, listened to daily by 72 percent of Pushtu speakers and 62 percent of Dari (the Afghan dialect of Farsi), according to a BBC survey conducted before the crisis broke.

Apparently, the BBC does not broadcast U.S. government statements and press briefings in full, as CNN does.