Reporters on the Job
• Hunting Suspects: Contributor Lane Hartill had lunch with Hazrat Jamal in his village in eastern Afghanistan. Lane learned that Mr. Jamal was being hunted by US Marines after they were fed false information about him. Later, he was cleared (page 7). But as Lane and Jamal drove to lunch, they passed a Marine convoy. "Hazrat was in the front seat and I thought he was going to duck down or become nervous. But he looked right at them, and they looked right at him. He told me that he sees the marines all the time in town, but they don't know who he is. That's one of the challenges for the US and Afghan forces hunting for suspects: They don't always know what the person looks like."
• Not a Toy: Staff writer Scott Peterson has been reporting about the Methboub family since 2002. From the first visit, the youngest boy, Mahmoud (now 8), has been fascinated by the Champion Swiss Army knife he wears on his belt. "I was talking with other members of the family, and as soon as he spied it, he undid the Velcro, and pulled out the knife. I warned him it was sharp, but there was nothing he liked better than to pull out every blade," says Scott.
During this visit (page 1), Mahmoud latched onto the latest model on his hip, Scott's Christmas present from his family. "He took it out into the hall for nearly an hour," says Scott. "When he returned with the main blade out, his mother let out a gasp, I knew he was overdue for some basic training."
David Clark Scott