Here in the cradle of the Taliban movement, Faizulhaq Mushkani sold his land for $600,000 last year to buy equipment to open a packaging factory in a booming industrial park.
The industrial park””powered by military-run electrical generators””is a pillar of the U.S. strategy against the Afghan insurgency. The arrival of reliable electricity in late 2010 revitalized Kandahar. More than 100 new factories have sprouted.
These days, however, Mr. Mushkani and fellow entrepreneurs are grappling with a fatal flaw in their business plans: They expected the Americans to stick around longer. But, now, with U.S. forces preparing to depart Kandahar next year, the American electricity will disappear, too.