Architectural historian Dan Cruickshank journeys to Afghanistan on an expedition into the heart of its war torn cities and mountainous regions in search of what remains of its once rich cultural heritage.
Over the last 20 years, Afghanistan has been blown apart by successive civil wars and the tyrannical regime of the Taliban. This was a country with a unique cultural identity, whose ancient trade road, the Silk Route, had brought a great fusion of influences from the Han dynasty in the East, the Caesar dynasty in the West and from India in the South. Now Afghanistan lies in ruins and archaeological sites and architectural ruins have been plundered by soldiers and profiteers.
For this Omnibus Special, Dan Cruickshank attempts to discover what cultural treasures remain. He travels to Bamiyan to see first hand the colossal Buddhas that were destroyed by the Taliban in March 2001. He meets the Hazara people of Bamiyan, who speak openly about life under the Taliban.