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Fighting back - Feature Stories
December 2009 Issue
The shopkeeper’s leathery face is still and set; he’s doing his futile best to conceal his anxiety. His gaze flits nervously from my rifle, to the face of my language assistant, to the motorcycle churning its way down the mud-choked streets of Hutal, a small town about 80 kilometers west of Kandahar City. “Have you had any trouble recently with the police asking you for illegal taxes? Has anyone demanded money from you?” I ask. My language assistant, a former Afghan National Army officer who trained at Fort Benning before realizing he could better support his family on a contractor’s salary, relays the question in Pashto. The old man shakes his head and mutters the Pashto equivalent of “no,” casting his eyes over the assortment of trinkets on display in front of his shop while carefully avoiding my gaze. I sigh. It isn’t the first curt negative I’ve received today. It probably isn’t even the fifteenth. If you interact much with …
Read full article at http://uga.edu/gm/ee/index.php?/single/2009/12/597/.
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