Mitch Swenson

Syria | Small Arms | InfoSec | Geoint

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***Spoilers, obviously*** Pull up a chair, Homeland. I’ve got a bone to pick with you. Now I like you, Homeland. I’m in your corner, I am. Most of the time you get it right. Yes, you are a dramatization.

Sirte was the last city in Libya to fall, it was the Gaddafi stronghold and the site of the most lucrative oil basin. When Gaddafi’s convoy was hit by militia RPGs in late October, he climbed into a sewer drain in Sirte to protect himself from, what he thought, were NATO drones.

When surfing networks — whether it be on college intranet, FTP servers, or KaZaa — there is a curiosity to browse the collection of another, if only to discover things of similar interest. These, however, are curated results. It is rare to comb the lumped, electro-dossiers of the not-so-distant-past.

The Rwandan border personnel waves me through without headache but, in the interstitial area between the two countries, I’m stopped almost immediately by the Congolese military. It seems pretty obvious that I am a sore thumb in these parts: solo, white American in a barrel of ethnic Hutus and Tutsis.

The fake passport is the holy grail of travel contraband. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. There are a couple of reasons for this. A whole world of opportunities await with the fake passport (FP), some of them lucrative (gold smuggling in Nepal), some of them door-opening (Burma, Congo, China), but all of them ego-inflating.

Woke up on a thin piece of cloth over a tatami mat. Sort of happy to be so close to the floor because I don’t have to worry about falling out of bed, even though I have never fallen out of bed. Even as a child. Put my laptop on my chest and opened a new Word document, opened iTunes, opened Firefox.