For example, did you know that the afghani is a unit of money, and that the correct term for a person from Afghanistan is Afghan?
Afghanistan Online provides lots of interesting information about the country; that site calls Afghanistan "The Friendliest Country in the World, Possibly the Universe."
Here's the CIA World Factbook entry on Afghanistan, for a quick look at Just The Facts.
I'm guessing Mike Sheehan, who was the guy in charge of antiterrorism at the State Department last December (not sure what his position is now), is pleased to see all this attention on bin Laden; in this CBS interview, Sheehan says, "The Taliban's control over most of Afghanistan has resulted in a haven of lawlessness, in which terrorists, drug traffickers and other criminals live with impunity." Looks like the US has had bringing down the Taliban as a goal for a while. Makes me wonder even more what the US gov't was doing supporting the Taliban (did you know the US sent $43 million in aid to the Taliban earlier this year, because they're tough on opium growers?).
Here's a fascinating contrarian article by a Muslim woman, saying a lot of things I've never heard before about the Taliban's treatment of women. Now, the first time I heard about the Taliban's treatment of women was from an Afghan woman being interviewed on NPR, so this article's suggestion that only American non-Muslims are speaking out against the Taliban doesn't really hold water for me. But it's still a very interesting look at this stuff, from an angle I haven't encountered before. (And her stance is not as simplistic, nor as pro-Taliban, as it initially appears to be.) One of her interesting points: "The people [of Afghanistan] were tired of looting, war time crimes (including rapes), and the behavior of the previous regimes they had faced. The message of the Islamic students, known as Taliban, appealed to a great many, and by 1996, they emerged at the forefront in the struggle for power in Afghanistan." She also says: "As we all know, the Taliban have been accused by the media and other organizations of implementing a 'strict' form of 'fundamentalist' Islam in Afghanistan. However, the fact that many of the Taliban militia men are poorly educated or completely illiterate has to make us, as Muslims, question their Islamic knowledge."
I'm very uncomfortable with anything that even begins to defend what the Taliban are doing. But on the other hand, I have to admit that I just don't know enough about it to make a truly informed judgment.