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Shocked into Thinking.
in US

Area: FATA, Pakistan.

The  fifteen year old boy makes it home, sweating, grunting, bruises over his body, climbing rocks, falling, flailing. The explosions, echoing in his ears.

His house is not where it should be; in it's place is a rubble of bricks. His father, mother, sister and brothers lie dead.

He isn't alone. Other houses in his village are razed to the ground.

He hears the drone of a plane overhead. Still in grief, the bomb hits not far from where he sits. He is thrown into the air, sails like a feather, and finds his arm broken, blood over his face.

He struggles to join the steady stream of people rushing from their homes; the bootmaker, the vegetable seller, the farmer and their families, his cousins and aunts. He doesn't know who and when, but someone lifts him before he falls unconscious.

He makes it to a refugee camp bereft of real support.

I ask him, days later, his vacant eyes staring at the sky: What happened?

He tells me his story.

I ask him, who did it, whose plane was it, who killed his family? I feel sympathy, sorrow at his loss.

He doesn't know. It could be the American drones, or the Pakistan Army. Both have been bombing the area. This was the first time they hit their village.

What will he do? A writer's mind always teasing, always searching a for a glimpse of a story.

He says: Revenge.

I ask from whom? I am a sadist, I shall learn later.

From the Americans, from the Pakistanis who killed his family -- Then he pauses, thinks and says, --America, is too far. But I can reach Islamabad -- it's only a few hours.

I stay quiet. I have just met my first suicide bomber. And he is targeting my home.

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I am so sorry for what is happening in Pakistan right now. I hope our leaders can find a way to make it stop.

Thank you Lisa for your support.
My mind wasn't even working yesterday, as I tried to understand and make sense of what was happening all around us.
There is genuine fear in my friends and family for the first time.
And suddenly we feel angry, at whoever is destroying the fabrics of our lives. Yet the enemy remains faceless. And we carry on with our lives, trying to lead a civil life.
Oh, I am getting passionate about this once again.
Thank you, for your kindness , I treasure it.

Re: What's Happening

I am trying to understand what is happening there, so let me tell you what I think and tell me if you think it's close or entirely off base. I get the impression that our government established close alliances with the last President in Pakistan, but he was not popular with the people and therefore, once he was gone, we had no real ties with Pakistan. I get the impression that because Pakistan is such a massive nation, it is very fragmented regionally and there are powerful tribal forces controlling areas along the border with Afghanistan that may not fall well under the control of the official Pakistani government. As US troops occupy the Afghan border, I get the impression that Al Quaeda and the Taliban are operating in both Afghanistan and Pakistan and that cross-attacks are being launched in both directions. US attacks into Pakistan are violating Pakistan's sovereignty, but the US feels justified in going after those who we perceive to be the enemies who launched the 9/11 attacks. Some in the US feel that aid to Pakistan (reported to be on the order of about $10B over the last seven years) that we wanted Pakistan to use in order to build up security to fight terrorism, has not been used to do that. The biggest worry now is that if the US continues to engage in skirmishes on the border that it's possible the Pakistani Army could engage with them, deaths will result and -- all hell will break loose. I am just a citizen and I don't know what I think about this because I don't feel like I fully understand the whole picture.

Does this sound anything like what you are seeing there?

Be safe. I hate this.

Hi Lisa,
I shall reply to all this either below later, or in a later post dedicated to the subject.
Thanks for asking all this. It is important to know what is happening in the global village of ours.

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