"On Kalashnikovs and Kipling" by George Mastras

An awesome story of our trip written by my friend George about one of the trips we took together. Read it and you will feel like you are right there with us.

On Kalashnikovs and Kipling; In the Tribal Areas of Pakistan on the Eve of 9/11
Copyright George Mastras
ghmastras at yahoo.com

“SHOOT!” commanded the red-bearded Pathan with piercing blue eyes.
We were in Darra Bazaar, a dusty market town tucked in a large, arid gorge in the remote Tribal Areas of Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province, only twenty-five miles east of the Afghan border. It was 28 July 2001 – an ominous time to be in the Tribal Areas, a region ardently supportive of Osama bin Laden and recently slapped with a slew of staunchly worded U.S. State Department travel advisories, in sum and substance, warning all Americans, “DO NOT GO THERE!” From the ‘Osama bin Laden – Our Hero!’ t-shirts sold in the nearby Peshawar bazaar, to the wild-eyed mullahs distributing jihadi leaflets lambasting the “American-Zionist” conspiracy against Islam, one thing was clear – the place was an anti-American powder keg waiting to blow.
But little did we know how much powder had been packed into that keg. Less than 150 miles away, bin Laden and his Al Qaeda cohorts were finalizing their plans for the worst terrorist attack ever committed against America – one that would alter the course of history in one fell swoop.

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