(Image: Right, German Army Brig. Gen. Josef Blotz, International Security Assistance Force spokesperson, alongside Mohammad Fahim, curator of the Stone Age, during a tour of the Afghan National Museum Aug. 3, 2010. From ISAF Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Chlosta)

Designs for a new Afghan National Museum were unveiled this week following a decade of work. Culture and trade have been central to Afghanistan throughout its history but not for the past twenty years. A civil war led to the pillaging and destruction of the previous National Museum in the early 1990’s. And later under Taliban rule, more artifacts were lost or destroyed and cultural expression was repressed. There are hopes the new cultural centre will foster unity and identity within Afghanistan and teach younger Afghans about their heritage.

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