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THE KAFIRS OF KAFIRISTAN The land in the east of the Hindu-Kush range that lies between Pakistan and Afghanistan was called Kafiristan the land of Kafirs and there dwelled the Kafirs the islamic word for pagan who rejected any conversion to Muslim and followed their own religion Guarded by their geography and strength it is assumed that 200 thousand Kafirs lived there They drove away the armies of Timur 14C Akbar 16C Nadir-Shah 18C and were completely shut out from the exterior world But in 1895 Amir Abdul Rahman the King of Afghanistan conquered Kafiristan after a grueling battle and compelled them to convert to Islam The name of Kafiristan was changed to Nuristan which means the land of light Thus the main energy of the guerrillas that resist the Soviet army in Afghanistan today were Kafirs ninety years ago KALASH-KAFIRS OF CHITRAL The Kafirs of Afghanistan were converted to Islam but those of Pakistan who belonged to British-India after the Durand Line 1893 still followed their own religion These are the Kalash-Kafirs and estimably 1700 of them live in three valleys of Chitral District North West Frontier Province of Pakistan THE ORIGIN OF KAFIRS The history of the Kafirs remains obscure but some consider them to be the descendant of the armies of Alexander the Great BC327 They say that some Greek cultural elements can partly be identified in Kafiristan For example the sports and games in Nuristan wrestling and shot-put etc were supposedly practiced in the ancient Olympics Secondly their features are thought to resemble those of the South-European characteristics Thirdly it is believed that the Greeks had an influence on their music They consider that these facts seem to point to their Ancient Greek origin But there is no conclusive evidence It is true that in The Invasion by Alexander the Greats by Arrianus and Plutarchos the authors state that
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