By David Rohde
The compelling and insightful account of a New York Times reporter's abduction by means of the Taliban, and his wife's fight to unfastened him.
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Extra info for A rope and a prayer : a kidnapping from two sides
I promise myself that when David returns, I will restate this promise sans blink. My mother has prepared a lobster dinner in anticipation of my arrival. I tell her there is no cause for celebration and bring her up to speed while Lee phones his wife from the other room. Mom is quiet, recognizing that this was always within the realm of possibility, given the nature of Da vid’s work. When I tell her I am shocked and upset by David’s letter— that he was willing to risk everything for the sake of the story, without consulting me—she does not finger point.
I wonder if our Arab executioners have arrived. Qari and another guard walk in with freshly cooked rice, bread, and meat, as well as bottled water. The guard, whose name is Akbar, profusely apologizes for his lateness. He says Atiqullah has ordered him to see to all our needs. I believe Akbar is the same guard who whispered “no shoot, no shoot” to me on the first day of the kidnapping. The kind treatment surprises and encourages me. On the second day, Akbar brings us new clothes and warm blankets.
The fourth day, Qari allows us to sit outside in the small walled courtyard. A few hours later, he lets Tahir play a game on his cell phone. I suggest that Tahir try to text “track this phone” or a similar message to the Kabul bureau from Qari’s mobile when he is not paying attention. Tahir agrees. When he asks for the phone a second time, Qari is suspi cious. He notices that Tahir and I have been talking quietly beforehand. He starts shouting in Pashto. Tahir says he accuses us of trying to send a text message.
A rope and a prayer : a kidnapping from two sides by David Rohde