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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Ducking and diving under B-52s -Syed Saleem Shahzad

An arduous overnight trek on foot from Bajaur Agency took us to the Sarkano district of Kunar province. The route followed the Nawa Pass - a tough climb - which has become a daily flashpoint between the Taliban and US forces.

While I was heaving with the effort, my slim Taliban guide glided along effortlessly, despite lugging an AK-47 rifle and ammunition, and much of my baggage.

"To me, this is a journey of a few hours, for you it is an eight-hour journey," said Ibrahim, a resident of Kunar province. He confided later that he had thought that after the first stiff climb my passion to cover Taliban country would have been extinguished. There were indeed moments, on some of the treacherous stony paths where one slip in the moonlight would have sent me tumbling hundreds of meters into a vast valley, that I considered the wisdom of the journey.

Ducking and diving under B-52s -Syed Saleem Shahzad


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