Map of Afghanistan – circa 1943.
The degree lines are every two degrees, only even numbered degrees are shown. Quetta, Pakistan is just north of the 30th degree line. Kabul, Afghanistan is just west of the (imaginary) 69th degree line. From these two reference points one can get their bearings.
North to south Afghanistan is almost 8 degrees; hence at 70 miles (approximately) per N/S degree we have a distance of 560 miles. East west is more less the same (in distance) not counting the “panhandle” (in the far northeast) that reaches all the way to China, but is conveniently not drawn on this map by the map-makers. Afghanistan wasn’t seen as that important in the “west” at the time that this map was drawn.
Most of the names given are the “old” British names with the British spellings. But this map does depict the mountains and the valleys well; better than the topographic maps drawn in meticulous detail by the USGS. Every different map has its advantages.
The old names are good when one is reading old books, history books and Victorian novels for example. It helps to understand why the British once left Afghanistan and really should have never tried to come back in force (with forces). Maybe the new government in England can figure that one out, by getting OUT of Afghanistan.
On this map it is the “Helmund River” and the “Arghasan River” (not the Araghandab) and the river (as depicted here) takes a novel course (meaning pure fiction). What is not pure fiction is the city of Saighan, same then as now. Maybe it’s just another misspelling; or a name from the past. You decide.
Click on the map to enlarge it. Click again to see even more. Have fun; but remember all those black lines in Afghanistan are rivers, not roads or railroads.
[First posted: 2010.05.21 / Friday Map of Afghanistan – circa 1943]