Reporters on the Job

AT THE FRONT: While interviewing Pakistanis and Afghan refugees in a mud-brick village beside the Khyber Pass (this page), Phil Smucker thought that the world's problems were converging on him. "Hundreds of angry men crowded around me, screaming: 'What about Palestine? What about Kashmir? What about all the people the US has killed in its own wars? How do you know Osama did it?' "

But, fortunately, Phil says, there are still pockets of civility. "Only a day earlier, I'd taken a short break at sunset to have tea on the green of the Peshawar Golf Club. I actually fantasized about playing 18 holes. Maybe after the war."

SOLIDARITY ON THE STREETS? Ben Lynfield says that Israel (page 1), as part of its gestures of solidarity with the US, has renamed two streets. One of the oldest streets in Jerusalem, Jaffra Road, has been renamed New York Road. Tel Aviv's main road that runs past the Israeli Defense Ministry has been renamed Pentagon Street. But the gestures are limited, Ben says. New York Road is to last one month; Pentagon Street two weeks.

ALL IN A DAY'S WORK: For today's story on the shepherds' night school, Danna Harman drove "out to the middle of nowhere and met with two Masai who run the project." They planned to show her the shepherds' schools. But they're mobile, and even the organizers were not sure exactly where the schools were that particular day.

"So we drive around the barren countryside forever," Danna says. "And finally my jeep runs out of gas. We radio for more gas and somehow get an oldmotorcycle to take us around - me hanging on for dear life behind this Masai guy in full traditional garb." [page 7].

They finally found two schools (one in a church, one just a blackboard under a tree), but no students. "We were told there were elephant stampedes afoot, so the kids had gone home."

DELAYED REACTION: Ilene Prusher was stunned the first day after the attacks on the US. "I felt there was a sort of indifference here," Ilene says. "There was festival music pumping out of public loudspeakers near my home, and the massive screens in Tokyo's equivalent of Times Square continued to play ads for pop music, sunglasses, and hair dye." [page 7].

Later, though, she found that most people were deeply disturbed by the attacks and were worried about the world moving toward a state of war. "A cab driver asked me where I was from, and when I said New York, he expressed a deep sense of sympathy." It served as a reminder, Ilene says, that, especially in Japan, it often takes more time for people to open up about how upset they are.

Let us hear from you.

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