Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The Library Shelf: Stones into Schools

It's supposed to be Wordless Wednesday, but this is probably the furthest thing from wordless, as the book has 448 pages!

I just looked and my last posting on The Library Shelf was last August. Oh My, that was a long time ago! I told you that I have no time to read for pleasure during the school year. I, myself, even thought I was exaggerating, but I guess that's actually the truth.

So, on the Library Shelf today:

Stones Into Schools:
Promoting Peace with Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan
by Greg Mortensen

This is a sequel (of sorts) to Greg Mortensen's first book, "Three Cups of Tea".

Several years ago, Greg had a failed attempt to climb the second highest mountain peak in the world, but came to love the people of the countries where he was climbing (Afghanistan and Pakistan).

In his first book, he tells of that "adventure" which included being rescued by the inhabitants of a tiny cliffside village. He bonded with his rescuers and made good on his promise to come back and provide schools for their children, most importantly the girls, who have been forbidden to go to school and learn.

One thing that must be remembered is this is Taliban territory. He has been kidnapped and threatened with death in the pursuit of his cause. Yet, he keeps going back, building more and more schools and bringing knowledge and education to these people. As the subtitle states, he truly believes, "Peace will come through books, not bombs."

In his latest book, he tells of traveling through the remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan with his trusted companions. This is a true account of not only his struggles and triumphs, but those of the citizens of some of the most rugged terrain in the world, all in the quest to get something that we take for granted every day, the opportunity to learn.

The current war in Afghanistan that involves US troops is not a war against the Afghan people, but against the Taliban, who happen to BE in Afghanistan. The majority of the citizens of Afghanistan would like for the Taliban to be gone too.

An enlightening and inspiring book showing just how much one man can do with a lot of sacrafice and determination (and a little help from his friends).

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