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Getting Up Close and Personal With the Taliban

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  • Getting Up Close and Personal With the Taliban

    David Rohde, the recently escaped captive reporter from the NYT shares his experiences inside the Islamic Emirate of Waziristan.

    It's harrowing.

    Go there with him and you'll feel the sweat.

    It looks to be a series of articles that are coming detailing his thoughts and observations. He's got a bunch and this is the first in what promises to be a series of five superb reads-

    Held By The Taliban-NYT

    Please insure that you watch the interactive video that accompanies this story.

    There are four more to come...
    Last edited by S2; 19 Oct 09,, 18:41.
    "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
    "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

  • #2
    Mind games and other tricks aside,I noticed that at least the leaders don't seem to be dumb and ignorant.Internet access and electricity(I wonder who provides internet services in the Wild West ),as well as knowledge of how our mindset,both collective and individual seem to be widespread among Taliban top/medium level leadership.It's interesting to note that the same things are said about the West by both militants on the frontlines and regular Ahmeds in Karachi,Cairo or Gaza.
    Those who know don't speak
    He said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. Luke 22:36

    Comment


    • #3
      Mihais Reply

      "...by both militants on the frontlines and regular Ahmeds in Karachi,Cairo or Gaza."

      I posted this elsewhere as well. The first response was a poisonous doozy. Not unexpected though. I've read Rohde's quotes LONG before they were published in the NYT.

      In fact, I don't know that I'm not having conversations with the enemy daily.

      Actually I DO know.

      I am...

      Rohde reaffirms the seamless nature of the relationships inside the heart of darkness. It won't matter elsewhere. Like the taliban leaders in his article, only the news that fits the narrative passes their mental filters.

      If we ever get our Info ops act together there's leverage to be exploited in that cognitive flaw but I harbor little hope.
      Last edited by S2; 19 Oct 09,, 19:22.
      "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
      "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

      Comment


      • #4
        Getting Up Close and Personal With The Taliban Pt. II

        More from David Rohde's experiences in Pakistan.

        Mildly put, the P.A. appear content to transit the Islamic Emirate of NORTH Waziristan at the talban's permission.

        All vehicles must stop and each passenger exit when a P.A. convoy passes. TALIBAN vehicles only require that the driver exit. Thus any vehicle that the P.A. may pass with passengers still seated is Taliban.

        Trust me that the agreement insures those vehicles won't be stopped and searched.

        Lot of heat now for America supposedly abandoning a few check-points.

        ALL the N. Waziri checkpoints have been surrendered by the P.A. They man none of them and the Haqqani network rules the roost-

        Held By the Taliban Pt. II-NYT
        "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
        "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

        Comment


        • #5
          More

          David Rohde and Bill Keller answer questions from readers about the series and Rohde's experiences.

          Both questions and replies are interesting in revealing the nature of reporting in a war zone of Afghanistan's complexity.

          Comments can be read here.
          "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
          "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

          Comment


          • #6
            A Drone Strike and Dwindling Hope

            More from David Rohde's odyssey though Haqqaniville-

            A Drone Strike and Dwindling Hope-NYT
            "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
            "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

            Comment


            • #7
              if those articles are a normal example for the work of the NYT i don't really understand the bashing the paper often gets.

              Comment


              • #8
                Tarek Morgen Reply

                I recommend googling the name Elizabeth Rubin.

                She wrote some articles that were outstanding for them a few years ago. One is, I believe, in Adux's "Valley of Death" thread about three or four pages back.

                Personally, I believe it's a superb newpaper. One of the three or four best in the world. Jane Perlez, Eric Schmitt, and Carlotta Gall are doing some great stuff for them right now...
                "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
                "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

                Comment


                • #9
                  I just did and I knew already several articles from her (just never noticed that they were from the same person). Those which are still new for me are of course now on my to read list.

                  Maybe I confused it with another paper like the uh..New York Post regarding the criticms its recieves.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Tarek Morgen Reply

                    Don't know if you read this but C.J. Chivers from the NYT did a great set of stories on a platoon from 1-26 Infantry a few months back.

                    Bumped the thread also because it's the best one in this section and is very close to my heart.

                    Him and Dexter Filkens are great writers for the NYT also...:)
                    "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
                    "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Yep, unless I missed one, I read all the articles linked in that thread

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Tarek Morgen Reply

                        Hey,

                        What's up with your Bundeswehr Chief of Staff. Seems he's a little pissed at your boys down in A-stan.

                        I never understood the drinking thingy because our general orders specify no alcohol in an Islamic country but he's mad that a bunch of your gebirgsjager and fallshirmjager dudes are, uh...

                        ...a little HEFTY. Broad of belt with a bit of girth?

                        I'd imagine that they'd be some of your leanest baddest dudes around but he sort of made them sound soft and on cruise control.

                        What say you good sir?
                        "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
                        "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Are talking about this article?

                          German soldiers 'drink and complain too much to fight Taleban' - Times Online

                          (if there was a newer similar incident I have not heard of it yet).

                          I am not in really in a situation to say if his complaints are right or wrong but as far as I know he tried to discipline a wounded soldier while inspecting a hospital for not standing up to greed him while said soldier was laying in his bed recovering from wounds. Together with a few similar stories I heard, if true, would make that guy a pretty big douche.

                          And drinking, the rule is two beers after your shift. And beer is simply considered a "Staple food" in our society. Trying to take away the right from an adult to drink a beer off -uty would most likely end in front of our supreme court. (And while Alcohol is banned in Afghanistan, this law excempts foreigners who are allowed to drink and purchase alcohol)

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                          • #14
                            Tarek Morgen Reply

                            Yup.

                            That's the one.

                            A-hole, huh?

                            Pattonesque at that. Did he try to slap the guy back into battle?:))
                            "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
                            "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Filkens is great. Also google Sebastina Junger for good work in Vanity Fair.
                              Michael C

                              On Violence Twitter

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