Asalaamu alaikum wa rahmatul lah.
I visit your website on occasion, keeping up with your interesting life, the developments regarding your Chitrali wife & daughter, etc.
My internet service was disrupted within an hour of the Trade Center bombing. When I finally got back on line, many days later, one of the first things I did was go to your website to see if you had posted any information regarding the situation in New York City.
I wasn't disappointed.
Your online report was powerful.
Seeing the images on television wasn't as moving as your first hand account of making your way down into that inferno.
Now, with so much other activity occurring in the Afghan-Pakistani area, I snatched a minute to see if you had posted any new material.
I was surprised to discover not an update on New York, but rather one regarding Honzagool.
Call it paying my dues for reading your news report about New York, but I thought I should take a minute to send off this email - in which I ask if you knew that a reward poster was once circulated about you in both Chitral and Kafiristan?
That would have been, I think, late summer of either 1982 or 1983. I can confirm the date if need be.
I know this for a fact as I was in Kafiristan, alone on an equestrian expedition to Afghanistan, when the mail came in to the village of Bumboret.
The reward poster was enclosed in that mail.
As luck would have it, the local offical who was dining with me was opening the mail as we talked and drank chai.
The conversation fell quiet, then died altogether, as he started reading the contents of one particular envelope.
Without letting me see what it was that he was holding, he asked me what my name was.
At which time he said, "You're sure its not Sam Sloan?"
To which I replied that it wasn't and that I had never heard that name before. He then went on to confirm that I was an American Muslim, to which I answered in the affirmative.
But when he asked if I lived in New York City I admitted that no, I came from California, among other places.
He then turned the page around.
I remember seeing what can only be described as a "Wanted" poster, complete with a black and white photograph of a much younger Sam Sloan.
There were details listed on the paper about your conversion to Islam and your New York residence.
Despite the years, I am firm in the conviction that the poster was seeking you for kidnapping a Chitrali woman, and for questioning about wanting to procure other women for immoral purposes.
Your path, and mine, went separate ways on that day, only to be rejoined via the disaster in New York City, and through this email.
Though out the years that I traveled in Pakistan and Afghanistan, I occasionally met natives who knew of you, but no one who had actually met you. With one exception:
Years later I was once again riding through that part of the world, this time bound for Gilgit.
Once again I had come into Kafiristan to find grass and rest. My pack horse died in Boumbaret.
I made arrangements with a local inn keeper, a man who cannot be adequately described without using the most vile profanity in three languages, to bury the remains of this loyal animal.
I paid what was a great deal of money, only to discover that not had the inn-keeper not had the horse buried, he had in fact had it butchered and cooked, wherein the Kafirs of the village of Boumbaret ate it, dancing and partying while I sat nearby in total ignorance.
Not too long ago I discovered a small story about your life wherein you described how a very young Kafir took you up on a mountain, took advantage of the altitude and your own situation, and extorted money out of you.
That young criminal was the same inn keeper who ate my horse.
I speak of a man named Abdul Khaliq, may he burn in all the fires of Hell for eternity!
In closing, your name was still well known from Dir to Gilgit for many many years. I last rode through that area in 1989 and I know that you were remembered in those days as well.
So I hope that these small stories are of some small emotional help in your search for justice.
Best wishes on all your crusades
Wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
From: "CuChullaine O'Reilly"
Date: Sat, 22 Sep 2001 16:32:06 -0500
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For a photo of Najibullah, President of Afghanistan, hanging, see: Najibullah Hangs in Kabul