October 4, 2011

Business is booming, I have made good profits since the Taliban were ousted,” said a smiling Sayed Habib as he showed Western dresses to young women in one of Kabul’s glitziest shopping malls.

Habib, 34, is one of a new generation of rich young Afghans driving flashy cars and wearing designer labels who have made fortunes in Afghanistan’s war economy since the US-led invasion 10 years ago.

His shop is one of many signs that some in the Afghan capital are now very wealthy — although Kabul’s mirrored glass malls and lavish mansions often sit on dusty roads dotted with children begging for money, highlighting wider, ingrained poverty.

And despite their wealth, many of the city’s yuppies are worried that the withdrawal of US-led combat forces in 2014 will mean security declines and the economic boom turns to bust.

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