In a 2005 interview in Kabul with a reporter from the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronoth, Afghan President Hamid Karzai hinted at a desire to establish formal ties with Israel. When "there is further progress [in the Mideast peace process], and the Palestinians begin to get a state of their own, Afghanistan will be glad to have full relations with Israel," he said. He revealed that he had met Shimon Peres several times, and called him a "dear man, a real warrior for peace."
In the wake of the 2008-2009 Gaza conflict, a mullah in Kabul stated that more than 1,000 Afghans signed up as a symbolic gesture to fight Israel.
The Jewish community of Afghanistan dates back a thousand years. When the state of Israel was created in 1948, the population of Jews in Afghanistan was around 5,000. Many began leaving Afghanistan for the new state. The remaining families fled to the United States in the wake of the Soviet invasion of 1979. At least one Afghan Jew, Zablon Simintov, remains today in Kabul.