Reporter kidnapped by Taliban in Afghanistan – escapes in Pakistan

David Rohde, a New York Times reporter who was kidnapped by the Taliban, escaped Friday night and made his way to freedom after more than seven months of captivity in the mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Mr. Rohde, along with a local reporter, Tahir Ludin, and their driver, Asadullah Mangal, was abducted outside Kabul, Afghanistan, on Nov. 10 while he was researching a book. Mr. Rohde was part of The Times’s reporting team that won a Pulitzer Prize this spring for coverage of Afghanistan and Pakistan last year.

Mr. Rohde told his wife, Kristen Mulvihill, that Mr. Ludin joined him in climbing over the wall of a compound where they were being held in the North Waziristan region of Pakistan. They found a Pakistani Army scout, who led them to a nearby army base, and on Saturday they were flown to the American military base in Bagram, Afghanistan…

Until now, the kidnapping has been kept quiet by The Times and other media organizations out of concern for the men’s safety…

Both Mr. Keller and Mr. Rohde’s family declined to discuss details of the efforts to free the captives, except to say that no ransom money was paid and no Taliban or other prisoners were released.

Kidnapping, tragically, is a flourishing industry in much of the world,” Mr. Keller said. “As other victims have told us, discussing your strategy just offers guidance for future kidnappers.”

RTFA. Long, detailed account – not only of this adventure; but, of David Rohde’s dedication to good, traditional journalism. He’s had no shortage of despots and murderers to cover whether it be in Bosnia or Afghanistan.

Kidnapped in Afghanistan – escaped in Pakistan? What does that tell you about our new administrations decision to tie the conflicts in each nation? Aside from an appreciation of realism standing apart from faith-based ideologues?

Fortunately, there remain a few media outlets in the world ready and willing to employ the services of those who gather news and information about what’s really happening in the world. People like David Rohde. All the rest is entertainment.

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