View Full Version : Afghans in Australia

04-06-2010, 08:21 PM
Interesting read.

The Australians got rid of it's camels though or are in the process of doing so. Apparently they were proving too much of a problem so thousands of them were ordered to be shot, this pulled a few heartstrings of the Saudis (yeah that's right Palestinians dying won't do it, but vulnerable camels will), who then offered to give them refuge.

I was talking to my dad about it as it was on the news a while back, and he told me how the Pashtuns brought the camels to Australia in the first place. The Afghans also built the railway too; hence the name ''The Ghan''.

04-06-2010, 10:39 PM
my uncle was telling me about Afghans in Australia how they have assimiliated into the aussie culture, The only thing left in them as far as Pashtunwali is concerned is the family or last name.
my uncle said the same thinggg....

Dinosaur Khan
04-07-2010, 01:14 AM
Actually these were afghans/pashtuns of british india. Many indian muslims had also settled in other colonies of britian during that time.

04-07-2010, 07:31 AM
No, they were Afghans from Afghanistan.

I always hear the stories from our elders how they were begging them to visit foreign countries and etc.

04-07-2010, 09:46 AM
Interesting read.

I was talking to my dad about it as it was on the news a while back, and he told me how the Pashtuns brought the camels to Australia in the first place. The Afghans also built the railway too; hence the name ''The Ghan''.

Yes they did. A few years ago, there was talk that they would change the name back to the Afghan Express, what is once was. Clearly, I doubt they will. The Ghan's emblem is an Afghan on a camel in recognition of their efforts in opening up the interior to the rest of Australia (tickets are so dear, you'd rather fly Emirates). The living quarters were termed The Ghan or Afghan towns and cameleers would build Masjids that would not only serve as a place of worship, but as a gathering place that offered them a sense of community that they could not find elsewhere.

How they were dealt with, was at times purely disgusting. To the extent that those men were buried with their camels. In some instances, European attitudes to the cameleers focused on their religion and in other cases, it was related to their pride and independence as, at the time, Afghanistan was really only known to most Australians as the country that had, unlike British India, resisted the superpowers' forces (aha, Go Afghans!). However, they were shunned despite their skills and hardwork. There was more acceptance by the local Aboriginal populations. Some cameleers married local Aboriginal women and had families here (Sad, I know!). I know some Balochi Aborigines, not Afghan (not yet at least).

And all this is NOT in our primary school books. The surface is scratched, maybe in a handwriting book, and that's about it! Sad cases, can't come to accept that the cameleer contribution to this country has been much greater than most people realise. Afghans have made a substantial contribution to South Australia in particular but history has almost ignored them, and the role they played opening up inland Australia. Without the efforts of the Afghans, much of the development of the outback would have been very difficult. Whole communities, towns, mining establishments, pastoral properties and some well known explorations in the interior have been made successful because of their contributions. Off topic, but one thing I just can't stand is when I am asked where I am from, and I say Afghanistan, like a record being played, I always hear, OH awful place it is, you must be happy you're here (NO, I am not!). Oh, I've read a lot about it, and I am reading a book now about the miserable and dark history. Makes me burn! BUT, recently, Alhamdulillah, they have been recognised, in many Arts Exhibitions and museums, the most recent late February this year in one of Victoria's museums.

I did have urges to say our all along ... :happy:

04-07-2010, 11:51 AM
GoPashtunGo, they didn't then, they recognise it now, well a tad better than before. And it makes news too, big headlines. Which is lifting in a way, to think they acknowledge their efforts in giving the economy a name, a place on the world stage because of the discovery of resources unique to this place, which today are one of the few traders in the world. Indeed, priceless, I agree.

Aussies, I could start a thread if you want ... haha! Jokes of course.

04-07-2010, 12:00 PM
They actually say that yes. In fact a whole section of the Australian Government website is dedicated to Culture, and this has a big space in it. Like I said, it is getting bigger now, though I don't remember doing any of it in school.

04-07-2010, 01:39 PM
This is the link for you:

Both. Living in Australia doesn't change that my AfghanLady. Keyword: Living.

Dinosaur Khan
04-08-2010, 04:25 AM
Camelmen came to australia from NWFP, Balochistan, Kashmir, Sindh, Punjab & egypt but they were all collectively known as afghans. Afghans were first to be known as cameeleers in australia & this being the reason why all camelmaen were referred as the afghans. So the name afghan & cameleer were being used synonymously.

04-08-2010, 04:55 AM
^^Jodigul is right, majority of the Afghans that came to Australia came from Pashtunkhwa. Later on other ethnic groups of British india joined the Afghans/pakhtuns and the aussies would group them with Afghans as well.
It shouldn't matter whether they came from Pashtunkhwa or Afghanistan, we are all Afghans peera, and this is a joint legacy.

04-08-2010, 04:55 AM
double post

05-09-2010, 01:41 PM
(NO, I am not!) Why not? At least you won´t starve to death or have a bomb drop on you in Australia. I like Australia, I just don´t like Kevin Rudd much.

05-09-2010, 06:10 PM
Sabrina, you in Australia?

05-15-2010, 02:26 PM
my family in australia