One of the most intense lessons learned about Afghanistan is how struggle and pain is a part of the nation's modern landscape. From the Soviet invasion to the emergence of the Taliban, there is an intense cataloging of the pain and suffering intrinsic to the nation and its people. The reader gains insight into this over the course of the narrative. The presence of the Soviet forces that did much to tear apart the nation physically and politically is only supplanted by the rise of the Taliban and the imposition of repressive elements that took much away from the people.
Given how the view of Afghanistan became politically relevant when Coalition- led forces marched into it in the wake of the September 11 Attacks, the book gives a wider account of the nation's history and how this has impacted its culture. What Amir has to endure "to become good again," is similar to the journey that the people of Afghanistan themselves and their leaders have to take in order to achieve the same result.