Editor’s note: Our writer says she knows little about the rules of football, but she enjoyed watching the Afghan national team on Sept. 11, 2013 when the team beat India to win its first international football championship in the South Asian games in Nepal.

Wow, what a championship! How perfectly they played,
so calm and courteous and disciplined,
people from all religions on the playing field.
We saw both teams’ respect and love for each other—
a lesson for every onlooker.

I think this is real life—
it shows how almighty Allah
loves us and helps those who take the right path.
When I found myself among the Afghan people
cheering in every city, oh, my kind Allah,
you could see happiness on my face.

But for a moment my heart cried
and yelled Oh lord! How can you tolerate
this wild war? Why? Do you know why our Afghan
sons were killed during the war?
This was an unjust hardship—
An overwhelming burden on our shoulders.

Who made this war in the land of Allah,
with the killing of human rights?
If not for those deaths,
Afghanistan would have champions in
cricket and football and other sports
to bring pride to our war-weary nation.

Now it is proven! We are not people who want war
or enjoy war or seek to benefit by war.
It is our land that makes us proud and gives love
to all. I believe my almighty
Allah doesn’t accept the regrets and
repentance of war-makers.

One day they will be penitent,
but no one will believe them
to be human.
Oh, the cheers!
We are the winners.
Allah helps us.

By Mina T.