Displaced by war, a mother burns cardboard scraps inside her mud-brick home on the outskirts of Kabul. Firewood is an unaffordable luxury.
Two young Afghan boys at an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp on the outskirts of Kabul. Both were born at the camp.
As U.S. and NATO forces drawdown from Afghanistan, billions of dollars worth of military gear is getting left behind as scrap metal.
12-year-old Said Noor was shot by the Taliban in his native Ghazni Province. He's now recovering at Emergency Hospital in Kabul. "Winters are safer," he tells me. "We can play in the desert. In the summer, we hide in the caves when the fighting starts."
7-month-old Mohammad Ullah nearly died from Shrapnel injuries. He's in the ICU at Kabul's Emergency Hospital.
Two Afghan boys from Helmand Province.
Shah Bibi has lived through Afghanistan's many tumultuous changes, but the Taliban attack against a guesthouse a week before the election was the most painful of them all. Her daughter was on her way home after volunteering for the election and was crossing the street when a suicide bomber detonated his device just a few feet away from her. She was studying to be a doctor.
Nawid worked as a gas station attendant with his father in Kandahar. Seven weeks ago, unidentified gunmen - perhaps the Taliban, he says - pulled up to the gas pump and opened fire. He suffered 12 bullet injuries. Doctors say it's a miracle that Nawid survived.
In Afghanistan, the invaders are often remembered by the things they leave behind. This is one of the more surreal sights in Bagram: an Afghan boy who makes a living selling scrap stands in front of a 9/11 "Never Forget" sign at the entrance of a junkyard. The U.S. is leaving behind nearly $7 billion worth of equipment as scrap.
There are no campaign rallies here, no voter registration drives, no polling centers. At #Kabul's internally displaced camp, the residents say they're the forgotten ones. This family has more pressing concerns than the elections: staying warm and feeding the young one.
The burqa may be widely seen as an emblem of Afghanistan but even this is starting to be replaced with cheap chinese imports.
Malnutrition is on the rise in parts of Afghanistan due to poverty, conflict and lack of education.
A mother and daughter sit inside their bare mud brick home. They were forced to leave all of their possessions behind when fighting erupted in the Sangin District of Helmand Province. With job opportunities scarce in Kabul, their economic situation remains dire.
These sewing machines once churned out ANSF uniforms. They've been sitting idle for nearly two years. NATO and US forces are pulling out, and the contracts have dried up.
The troop drawdown has crippled the economies of towns like Bagram. Unemployment is rampant.
The man on the right is from Sangin District in Helmand Province. Four members of his family were killed in one day: two sisters and two daughters. His wife, sister and father were injured. Heavy fighting between the Taliban, US and Afghan forces was too much to bear and they were forced to flee. They now live at one of the 50 or so IDP camps on the outskirts of Kabul.
"If I do not serve #Afghanistan who will? If we don't save it, who will protect this country?" says Abdul Bassir, a soldier of the Quick Reaction Force who was wounded in a Taliban attack in Kabul. "For $200 a month, we fight to save our kids our fathers mothers and sisters. But in this country there no law." His actions during the attack helped save the lives of nearly 50 civilians.
Some families Afghanistan's IDP camps keep caged pet quails to sell for extra cash. More money can be pocketed by taking bets on quail-fighting bouts.
Youssef owns a trucking company in Afghanistan but business has been nonexistent over the past year. There are hardly any contracts, and he's lost 25 drivers to Taliban attacks in recent years.
An Afghan girl runs past my camera. It's the day before Afghanistan votes.
A raisin factory in Kabul helps women who are the sole breadwinners for their families by offering them jobs and transportation to and from their homes.
This mother was force to flee when fighting erupted in her village three years ago. Although she is happy to be safe from the bombs, she's still haunted by the war. She lost two young sons when an airstrike destroyed her house. "In my dream, I am running away from the bombs but my babies are still inside the house," she tells me. "When I come back, I find their bodies. I can’t sleep because of it. None of us can sleep well at night.”
25-year-old Nawid recovers from his bullet injuries.
A female election worker prepares the ballots at a women's polling center in #Kabul.
"Every day when I move from my house and come here, I'm just counting the minutes. I am anticipating what will happen on the way here: Violence, suicides, fighting. is there guarantee for life in Kabul? No. Can you anticipate what will happen when you leave this hospital? No. But still I am committed to voting on Saturday. We have the chance to assign a new president for our future."
A mountain of mattresses discarded by US forces from Bagram.
A photo of powerful ex-jihadi leader and Afghan presidential candidate Abdul Rasoul Sayyaf hangs on a street corner at an IDP camp on the outskirts of Kabul.