Archive of Jun 2007

Pig Bombs, Machine Guns and French Racists: Second Life Gets Political

The call came unexpectedly on a day in early January. Marion Rickenbacker, a sprightly girl with skunk-striped hair, was roaming Second Life’s bustling landscape – she likes its nature, shrines and dance clubs – when her friend Kuraxgo Nedkov texted her. There was a protest underway on Porcupine Island, since December the headquarters of the [...]

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Kabul Bomber Kills American

This just in from the Associated Press: A suicide car bomber hit a convoy of security contractors in the Afghan capital Thursday, killing an American and a Nepalese citizen and wounding three other Americans, police said. The Taliban claimed responsibility. Two Afghan civilians were wounded in the attack in eastern Kabul, said Najibullah Samsur, a [...]

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Afghan Militia Fight Taliban

Poorly paid, poorly trained Afghan tribal militia bore the brunt of the fighting in recent battles with Taliban fighters in southern Afghanistan. One June 15, hundreds of Taliban based in the mountains of Uruzgan province, north of Kandahar, launched attacks against Dutch, Australian and Afghan forces and civilians in the provincial capital of Tarin Kowt [...]


War Is Boring #14

I almost cause a plane crash. Background here. Video here. Archives here.

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Afghanistan Photos

The flickr set from my Afghanistan trip is complete. Check it out.


Vice Readers Are Meanies

Check out some of the brutal comments on my Timor comic at the Vice Magazine website: “Smart answers aside this is fucking bollocks really, i mean my fucking dog could do better. Give it up fella, go get a fucking microsoft qualifcation or something, they like need computer engineers and shit.” “this is crap and [...]

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East Timor Vice

Vice Magazine published a comics adaptation of my East Timor reporting. Click on the thumbnail to read. The artist Matt Bors also draws my biweekly “War Is Boring” strip. Background here.  


Afghans Decry Corruption

Traffic in Kabul converges at a major intersection adjacent to a sprawling market ringed by wedding halls. Here, a dozen Afghan traffic police in white uniforms stop seemingly random cars. Heated conversations ensue, documents are passed back and forth, then money changes hands and the cops wave the drivers through. The driver’s violation? “They are always [...]


Where Were the Aussies?

Dutch and Afghan forces reportedly did most of the fighting in last week’s battle for Tarin Kowt in southern Afghanistan. So where were the Aussies? That’s a question I’ve been asked a dozen times by desperate Australian reporters, soldiers and members of the public. 700 Australian troops are based alongside the Dutch at Kamp Holland, but [...]


“Killing Children on a Day of Prayer”

Tom Hyland at the Australian Sunday Age newspaper has written an excellent analysis of the June 15 Tarin Kowt suicide bombing, which killed 11 Afghan children and one Dutch soldier outside a girls’ school: Accounts of what happened highlight the risks faced daily by troops who need a ring of armoured vehicles to protect them as they [...]


Axeghanistan Day Ten: Dutch Commander Defends Troops

This story should have run in The Washington Times. I wouldn’t know. As you read this, I am on an airplane somewhere over the Atlantic. The Dutch commander of a combined Dutch and Australian force in the southern province of Uruzgan on Wednesday defended the conduct of his troops amid hand-wringing from the Dutch Ministry [...]


Axeghanistan Day Ten: Back to Work

At Kamp Holland near Tarin Kowt, the Dutch are mourning the loss of a second soldier: 44-year-old Sergeant Major Jos Leunissen, who died in a mortar accident during combat with Taliban forces around the town of Chura on Monday. I’m not attending the memorial service; I attended last week’s service for Private 1st Class Timo [...]