Photographs and Text by Benjamin Lowy

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While the War escalates in Afghanistan 10 years after the US invasion, Afghans continue their lives plagued by many of the same issues existed under the Taliban - poverty, violence, and extremism. Using an iPhone as part of my continuing ViDi project tried to capture the zeitgeist of Afghan society in a more subtle and perhaps technologically innovative way.

Technology has permeated our daily lives. It has connected cultures and peoples who would otherwise remain oblivious to each others realities. In the last few months we saw evidence that the use of the Internet, social networking and smartphones played an inextricable role in the "Arab Spring." We have become attached to our cell phones for checking our emails, tweeting, blogging, updating Facebook, capturing the next viral video, photographing important and mundane moments.

To “point and shoot” has been a liberating experience. It has allowed me to rediscover the excitement of seeing imperfections and happy accidents rendered through the lens of my handheld device. The iPhone has allowed me to see Afghanistan past the war-torn country that I am often asked to portray in my editorial assignments. It is as if for the first time I am seeing the country as the locals see it -- that despite the surrounding chaos and despair, life is sprinkled with moments of levity and mundanity.