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By David Rohde

The compelling and insightful account of a New York Times reporter's abduction by way of the Taliban, and his wife's fight to unfastened him.

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Under Pashtunwali, all Pashtuns must display hospitality toward guests, give asylum to anyone in distress, exact revenge on those who injure or insult them, protect the honor of women, and always display unflinching brav­ ery, loyalty, and trust in God. In rural villages, conservative Pashtun tribal elders tended to be de­ voutly religious, opposed to central government rule, and suspicious of foreigners. In the large cities and towns, an educated Pashtun elite gener­ ally supported modernization of the country.

A proud Afghan nationalist, he is tired of meddling by foreign countries in his country and wants Afghans to be allowed to decide their own fate. Millions 35 Asad is twenty-four years old and a scrappy Afghan survivor. He is rail thin, has jet-black hair and beard and dark eyes. Pashtun as well, his fam­ ily originally hails from Khost province, but Asad was born and raised in Kabul. Married with two young sons, he has worked as a taxi driver in the city and a driver for Tahir and foreign journalists.

After hearing on the radio that both towers had been struck in a terrorist at­ tack, I jumped on the subway to the trade center. Ten minutes later, I walked out of a deserted subway exit and found myself standing four blocks from the two burning towers. Ten full stories appeared to be ablaze. I scribbled a few words in my notebook: “smoke from something on the ground. ” I walked closer and ran into Sherry Day, another reporter from the paper, and scribbled more notes: “Debris cascading. People snapping pictures.

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