"Ill-advised; Ill-equipt; I was against it from the start."


Paul Clammer has worked as a tour guide in Morocco, Turkey and Pakistan. In 1998, he was staying with friends in Mashad, Iran, reading The Road to Oxiana and dreaming of Herat when the Taliban rolled in to Mazar-e Sharif. Three years later he finally made it to Afghanistan, only to find himself having dinner with two Taliban ministers less than a fortnight before the attacks of 9/11. He has since written on Afghanistan for Lonely Planet, as well as writing a guidebook to Sudan for Bradt Travel Guides. During this trip he was researching the new Lonely Planet Guidebook for Afghanistan which will be publish in August 2007.
Paul Clammer

Steve Shucart first visited Afghanistan as a gemologist and lapidary in 1972, coming overland from Europe on the old Pilgrim Trail to India. He had a house in Kabul for a year. During the 1970's he bought lapis lazuli from the Ministry of Mines. During the 1980's he owned Triplegem Lapidary in Kathmandu, Nepal and regularly bought rough lapis from Ahmad Shah Massoud's Mujahadin. He also wrote the Afghan Dari Glossary for Hugh Swift's 'Trekking in India and Pakistan'. Now he is associate professor of English at Akita Prefectural Unversity, Honjo, Japan. This was his third trip to Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban.
Steve Shucart