31 July 2009

Donkey Run on the Shaunkrai Pass

The 10th Mountain Division Soldiers in this photo are intercepting a donkey run into Pakistan.

The inurgents load the donkeys up with wood in Afganistan and send them off up over the mountains. Apparently the donkeys have done this so many times they don't need an escort and just "hit the trail" into Pakistan. They are met by someone on the other side, the wood is sold to a furniture company, and the money goes back to Afganistan to fund Taliban activity.

Poppy crops are the major source of Taliban funding, particularly in the southern part of Afghanistan. But up in the mountains along the northeastern border with Pakistan, it's all about wood.

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