Monday, March 29, 2004

Despite what Thomas Friedman says, the Lexus hasn't yet won out over the olive tree -- and the world's not as small a place as we may like to think.

This became abundantly clear today, when I began researching a possible assignment to Zambia and Angola.

The idea is to travel with the UNHCR and follow a family of Angolan refugees from the Meheba camp in western Zambia to Cazombo in eastern Angola and then on to their home villages, some of which have been cleared of landmines by MAG.

They're able to return thanks to a peace agreement signed last year, ending three decades of civil strife in Angola.

(There's a map of the camps here and more about the programme of returning refugees to Angola here.)

But the logistics involved are a nightmare. Dodgy internal flights, the prospect of travelling hundreds of kilometres along bad roads make this trip a difficult, if fascinating, proposition.

I hope we can pull it off.


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