Here’s something you don’t see every day. The weekly Duxbury Clipper recently sent columnist Bruce Barrett to Afghanistan to cover the opening of a girls school funded by the Duxbury Rotary Club. Barrett did his reporting in the form of a blog, complete with photos, video, a map of the area, even a real-time weather report from the Afghan capital of Kabul.
An excerpt from Barrett’s final dispatch:
Kalashnikovs. In Duxbury, a band of men armed with assault rifles attending the opening of an elementary school would make the national news. But the Zabuli School for Girls isn’t in Duxbury. It’s in Deh Sabz, Afghanistan, a gritty town of 1,000 families on the outskirts of the capital city Kabul. Out here, standing among men armed to the teeth is calming, not frightening. It means that security is strong. Fear comes when standing among men who have turned their attention toward you, and you can’t see their weapons. More unsettling, perhaps, are the moments when you can see their weapons and the barrels are pointed up. That’s when they’re ready for action.
Not only is the series evidence of some terrific enterprise on the part of Barrett and the Clipper, but the online implementation is state-of-the-art.