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In the Shadow of Bin Laden (2004)

Video  -  Documentary | Short
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Ratings: 4.7/10 from 6 users  
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Title: In the Shadow of Bin Laden (Video 2004)

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Credited cast:
Generad Ayaz ...
Himself (archive footage)


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The story of the people who must continue to scratch out a life in the shadow of bin laden


Documentary | Short





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A timely and fascinating documentary. Well worth trying to find this DVD.
27 February 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I was very impressed with this documentary. I saw this program at a film festival in Oregon last year. For me and others in the audience, it was eye-opening to see what life is like for people living in the hard-scrabble villages on the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan. I had no idea that these people, famous for their ferocity and warlike nature, are also incredibly hospitable to strangers as well. I had thought the Taliban had smothered these people with their horrible religious dogma, making them fundamentalist Islamic robots, but the program shows many normal Muslim villagers who still live with a welcoming spirit to outsiders, without hate, and without trying to convert people to Islam at the end of a gun.

One of the most interesting comments I heard in the documentary was from a village barber, who said that it is a blood law that he (and everyone else there) must welcome a stranger into their village, no matter if it is an American or bin Laden. He said everyone who comes peacefully to his door, must be shown the same help and hospitality. It was his duty. There was a part in the documentary showing a small school attended by village kids, learning in a way that was similar to how American kids learn - with textbooks and pencils - learning their local language as well as English. And it wasn't a religious school, thankfully. That gave me some hope for the future.

A welcome perspective on a little-understood and rarely visited part of the world. I recommend this program to everyone who has an interest in what's going on at the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan - the fascinating life of people living behind the headline news.

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