Last night I had the opportunity of attending a wonderful outdoor musical performance . One of the sponsors was the Khyber Phaktunkwa Tourist Office. The musicians performed on a variety of traditional instruments, including flute, squeeze box, tabla, and several, string instruments mostly Pashtun tunes, interspersed with poetry. Several provincial ministers and dignitaries were present and the evening was lively and the buffet food superb. Some of the guests spontaneously entered the floor to perform the traditional Attan dance (ladies never dance in public!)
I met a delightful and very handsome local physician with a beautifal Persian wife, also a doctor. He owns and operates a welfare school for 400 students in his village in the SWAT Valley, a region best known in the world as th “Switzerland of the East” but unfortunately had been a target of very bloody militancy for the past five years. The Taliban recruited two students from this school because they needed “educated” ones to operate the rocket launchers. These two students prevailed upon the commanders of the militants not to harm the school where they studied and because of which they were able to receive training to operate sophisticated weapons against the Pakistan Army. It is sad to know that over two hundred schools have been destroyed in the district. They even apologized to the Doctor for having taken two mattresses from the school … “because nights in the mountains are so cold…!”
To Build a School
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