Jared Polis, my friend from high school, has made a recent trip to the Middle East as part of his run-up to the Congressional elections next year. I just finished reading his blog post about the use of private mercenaries in Iraq. Unlike most mainstream media news reports from the area, his recount was both refreshing and scary to read.
I have been able to take far fewer pictures than I had hoped; Photographs are generally not allowed anywhere someone official can see you. There are two kinds of photography-forbidden zones, one in which they will warn you to put away your camera and stop taking pictures, and another in which they will shoot you. I do not pull my camera out in areas where they might shoot first and ask questions later, and Iâ€™ve only been successful a few times in covertly filming fairly mundane areas before being caught in “warning” areas. Every time I film in a â€œwarningâ€ area I am taking the risk that they will take all my film (tapes) away and I will lose everything I have. So I have some film I will digitize when I get back, but precious little.
Back in 2003, I had early thoughts about doing my DVP Fellowship project in the Middle East. They were never really serious thoughts, and I’m glad that I’ve stayed here. Jared is a far braver man than I am, and he’s the kind of person that I would rather have running this country than the bozos we currently have. Read more about his experiences in Iraq on his website. For those in Colorado and in his district, support him for Congress!