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Westerners Are Using Tinder In Afghanistan. An Anonymous User Tells Us How It Works
Every smartphone user between the ages of 18 and 50, who is attracted to other people in either theory or practice, knows about the Tinder dating app. On the off chance you’ve carved out a paper-thin cultural niche for yourself and have successfully dodged any passing reference to the phenomenon — or you’re in a healthy long-term relationship — then I’m not talking to you. The rest of you seeking emotional fulfillment with the help of a digital device, prepare to have your mind blown: Afghanistan has Tinder.
To put it another way, there are people on Tinder in Afghanistan. Technically, Tinder exists wherever a smartphone can pick up a signal, but in a country struggling to escape decades of war, this is an achievement that deserves to be listed among polio eradication and poverty alleviation as one of the international community’s development goals. The power grid here is abysmal, corruption and violence run rampant, but at least the West’s 13-year occupation has imparted this war-torn land with an incredibly efficient way to flirt.
Of course, with Tinder, as with anything in Afghanistan, expectations must be managed like a favorite one-liner. If you tap the flame icon and start pinging once you land at Kabul International, profiles will populate as sure as bullets cause bleeding. The trick? Location, location, location. Expand your distance out to 99 miles and you’ll catch a few gals at Jalalabad. Pull it in a bit and the Shank ladies will show at 60, plus the Bagram babes around 30 miles yonder. But unless you have a bird, limit your radar range to ten miles. You’ll still catch the capital crowd, while saving yourself the agony of pining for a match on the other side of mine-infested mountains.
Even at ten miles, you’ll still find women. Not a lot, but some. Unfortunately, even with a selection that’s better than only North Korea, getting a connection is the easy part. Once a match is made, you still have to navigate a city littered with checkpoints and find some place that hasn’t been bombed yet. No one said war was easy.
A couple weeks ago, I matched with a cute American girl. The conversation, which began with mutual expressions of concern that neither of the other’s friends had been killed in the latest attack on foreigners, stirred a rousing back and forth that led to a proposed date and excited acceptance. If we were in New York, the biggest dilemma would concern who would have a longer train home. In Kabul, things are a bit more complicated: questions of curfews, movement restriction, and various governmental privileges quickly rose to the fore.
She worked at the embassy. I lived in town. I offered a list of potential venues that hadn’t been blown up yet, but she wasn’t allowed to leave her fortified compound. She offered I come and visit, but navigating the precipitous maze of checkpoints and search areas — each of which had been attacked on multiple occasions — didn’t seem wise for a blonde who blends in about as well as a hipster at Home Depot.
Momentum stalled as each successive attempt was stymied by overwhelming reality, and things fell apart. That battle may have been lost, but my war to snatch a scrap of normalcy is hardly over. The best thing about Tinder in Afghanistan? That you can use Tinder in Afghanistan. New people are always coming into town, and I’ll continue to give Tinder a try, if for nothing else than a dinner date where I forget about the vigilant guard cradling his AK-47. In a land littered with the failures of the past, nothing restores hope like flirting with the future.
A Marine wanted for killing his mother's boyfriend reportedly escaped police by hiding inside an RV they'd spent hours searching before towing it to a parking lot, where he escaped under the cover of darkness.
It wasn't until more than two weeks later authorities finally caught up to Michael Brown at his mom's home, which was the scene of the crime.
Brown stuffed himself into a tight spot in his camper during an hours-long search of the vehicle on Nov. 10, according to NBC affiliate WSLS in Virginia. A day earlier, cops said Brown fatally shot his mother's boyfriend, Rodney Brown. The AWOL Marine remained on the lam until Nov. 27, where he was finally apprehended without incident.
No motive is yet known for last week's Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard shooting tragedy, which appears to have been a random act of violence in which the sailor who fatally shot two civilian workers and himself did not know them and did not plan his actions ahead of time, shipyard commander Capt. Greg Burton said in an "All Hands" message sent out Friday.
Machinist's Mate Auxiliary Fireman Gabriel Antonio Romero of San Antonio, an armed watch-stander on the attack submarine USS Columbia, shot three civilian workers Dec. 4 and then turned a gun on himself while the sub rested in dry dock 2 for a major overhaul, the Navy said.
"The investigation continues, but there is currently no known motive and no information to indicate the sailor knew any of the victims," Burton said.
SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea said it had successfully conducted another test at a satellite launch site, the latest in a string of developments aimed at "restraining and overpowering the nuclear threat of the U.S.", state news agency KCNA reported on Saturday.
The test was conducted on Friday at the Sohae satellite launch site, KCNA said, citing a spokesman for North Korea's Academy of Defence Science, without specifying what sort of testing occurred.
Since the Washington Post first published the "Afghanistan papers," I have been reminded of a scene from "Apocalypse Now Redux" in which Army Col. Walter Kurtz reads to the soldier assigned to kill him two Time magazine articles showing how the American people had been lied to about Vietnam by both the Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon administrations.
In one of the articles, a British counterinsurgency expert tells Nixon that "things felt much better and smelled much better" during his visit to Vietnam.
"How do they smell to you, soldier?" Kurtz asks.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Erik Prince, the controversial private security executive and prominent supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump, made a secret visit to Venezuela last month and met Vice President Delcy Rodriguez, one of socialist leader Nicolas Maduro's closest and most outspoken allies, according to five sources familiar with the matter.