February 3, 2002 |
It's 10 a.m. on a crisp November day, and Suraya Sadeed bounces around in a highly combustible natural gas-powered van over potholes the size of swimming pools. We are traveling through Tajikistan's dusty, desolate no man's land of minefields and barbed-wire fences toward the Afghan border. Russian troops lie in the hills above with orders to shoot on sight anyone attempting to cross over. Sadeed, incongruously, looks like she's going to a ladies' lunch. Her makeup is immaculate.