This Might Be the Weirdest Restaurant in America

There's definitely no old Soviet spy equipment embedded inside.
Myles Karp

The Country Where Rappers Are Forced to Suck Up to the Government

Since 2014, hip-hop has essentially been banned in the central Asian country of Tajikistan. So what have rappers done to get their songs on the radio? Compare their president to a god.
Stephen M. Bland

The VICE Morning Bulletin

This morning, the Obama administration is to announce tougher visa rules in an attempt to block ISIS, a report claims the Pentagon spent too much money on goats in Afghanistan, Eagles of Death Metal will play a free gig for Bataclan survivors, and more.
VICE Staff
enduring freedom

Afghan Security Forces Retake Key Northern District From Taliban

The Taliban came within touching distance of capturing their first major Afghan city since 2001 when they took the district of Chardara at the weekend — now security forces have driven them out.
Islamic State

How the US May be Egging On the Growth of the Islamic State in Central Asia

Experts’ warnings come in the wake of revelations in May that Tajik Special Forces Colonel Gulmurod Khalimov joined Islamic State militants.
John Dyer
Islamic State

Amnesty for Repentance: Tajikistan's Radical Approach on Returning Islamic State Fighters

Officials are offering forgiveness to returning Tajik jihadists, in a radical departure from policies and stances taken by European and other nations.

I Ate Dinner in a Tajik Hellhole

Ask the average Westerner what they know about Tajikistan, and they'll probably draw a blank. (Is it a country? Isn’t there a war going on there?) Which made finding out more about qurutob, its national dish, even more interesting.
Florian Pinel

I Took a Trip Down Tajikistan's 'Heroin Highway'

The proliferation of flashy cars in one of the poorest countries in the world has led to a new local saying: “It is no longer ‘How much did it cost?’ but ‘How many kilos did it cost?’" A study released in 2007 estimated that drug money added up to 3...
Stephen Bland
Jedi Mind Tricks

Russia Is Weaponizing Jedi Mind Tricks

Several former Soviet republics are instituting bizarre national safeguards to counter Russia's new brand of mind-fucking warfare.
Ryan Faith

These Guys Build the World's Tallest Flagpoles for Authoritarian Regimes

Marc Summers and David Chambers have a pretty unusual job. Through their company Trident Support Corporation they build the world's tallest flagpoles for authoritarian regimes in Central Asia and the Middle East, because nothing says national pride...
Rob Price

Tossing Watermelons in Tajikistan

Fancy a watermelon? Visit Dushanbe's market in Tajikistan in late July, and you won’t be able to move for melons. Melons, melons, melons: as far as the eye can see. The Tajiks don’t seem to mind though, they relish tossing melons from truck to pile...
Celia Topping