In between stories of torture and the Taliban, the young man sitting opposite me had covered how to stage a dirty protest, Spanish chat-up lines, and how toothpaste can help you escape from prison.
Pakistan: Now or Never?
As the silver waters of the Kishanganga rush through this north Kashmir valley, Indian labourers are hard at work on a hydropower project that will dam the river just before it flows across one of the world’s most militarised borders into Pakistan.
So many deaths in Pakistan; so many to outrage or upset us. How do we choose whose death to notice? The civilian killed by a drone strike? The Shia Hazara gunned down in Balochistan? The Ahmadi father knifed to death in his home? The beheaded Pakistani soldier? The mother who died in a suicide bombing? The murdered journalist? The child swept away by floods? The acid attack victim?
If you go to the run-down Desh bazaar in central Kabul – which sells everything from widescreen Samsung televisions to used shoes – it doesn’t matter what currency you use to pay for your shopping. They will accept the afghani, the US dollar or the Pakistani rupee.