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Pelton on Afghanistan

2002-04-24 16:02:09+00 by Dan Lyke 1 comments

I'm going to steal liberally from an entry from RC3. There's a Salon interview with Robert Young Pelton, best known for writing The World's Most Dangerous Places, that's a must read to make sense of the news that we're getting out of Afghanistan, and is a wonderful critique of modern jouralism.

[ related topics: Writing Current Events Journalism and Media ]

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#Comment made: 2002-04-24 18:39:44+00 by: other_todd

I've been following Pelton for a while; he's one of my heroes. He is also somewhat messed-up; go find his sort-of-autobiography The Adventurist (Amazon should have it, as well as most bookstores; it's still fairly recent) and check out the guy's childhood - brrrrr.

Pelton gets access that makes the US government crazy because many of the people he's talking to trust him reasonably well. He got to see the Taliban (and Massoud) when nobody else did, for example, and that was back when they were setting up shop in Afghanistan. When this new fuss broke out, I knew he was going to be right back there. I've been waiting for his field report eagerly, especially since a new edition of World's Most Dangerous Places (which is the best field guide ever made for someone contemplating travel to a danger zone) is nowhere to be seen.

I think Pelton gets access because they know he will not write a pro-America puff piece. It's not so much that he has sympathy for the terrorists, but he understands how they got there. He understands root causes.

And, of course, he actually gets off his ass and goes.