The Art of War: Graffiti and stencil art around Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan

Posted at 10:45 AM, Oct 28, 2014
and last updated 2014-10-30 23:33:26-04

One color dominates Kandahar Airfield in Southern Afghanistan: brown. Clouds are rare. Plants are scant and the existing few are covered in what the people there aptly call ‘moon dust.'

It is inches thick and instantly coats everything.

Behemoth concrete barriers protect the buildings. Some even serve as blast shelters from potential enemy fire or explosions.

They’re called T-walls and they serve an incredibly important job. They’ve also become a canvas on this base that 23,000 people temporarily call home.  

Combining a little spray paint and stencils, the people who spend months on KAF have changed the drab scenery of a war zone to something a little more palatable.

Some serve as a commentary on politics.

Some serve as a commentary for life on base.

Some are just fun.

The story goes that some stencils are handmade. Stores on base sell some, too. 

Many have been there for years, added gradually over 13 years of war. 

But they all serve as an escape of ‘where’ they are. This is Kandahar Air Field.