In The Kite Runner, who said: "Tell him I'll take a thousand of his bullets before I let this indecency take place," and why?

1 Answer

belarafon's profile pic

belarafon | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Afghani author Khaled Hosseini wrote The Kite Runner in 2003 partly as a response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and as a personal statement of the horrors and violence the Afghani people face and have faced during his lifetime.

In Chapter 10, Amir and his father Baba are forced to escape the new Communist regime, as Baba is anti-communist and therefore subject to persecution. They flee with other refugees in a truck, and are stopped by a roadblock of Russian soldiers. One soldier, seeing that they are vulnerable, demands both a bribe and the sexual services of a married woman; while the other refugees remain silent, believing this to be a reasonable crime in exchange for their lives, Baba stands up and declares, "Tell him I'll take a thousand of his bullets before I let this indecency take place."

His statement is both a call to arms and a display of self-sacrifice. Baba is saying, in essence, that he is willing to defend a stranger, even with his life; he is also showing the other refugees that they have a responsibility to each other, despite their circumstances, and they do not have to submit to degredation by others. He is successful, and another Russian allows them through without harming the woman.