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Radio: Afghan Coup remembered

January 5, 2010

I don’t listen to the BBC World Service enough. I’m a Radio 3 boy after all, plumbed into the network to the exclusion of all else. It’s something I’m hoping to ween myself off.

One recent item on the World Service broadcast over Christmas and New Year (and a shorter version broadcast later on Radio 4’s Today programme) has diverted my attention to the World Service. It arrived in my inbox this morning but was broadcast on the network a couple of weeks ago.

It’s a breathtaking story including the recollections of a colleague Najiba who was visiting the palace when the coup took place (part one) and those of one of the soldiers who participated (part two).

The story is brought to life using linked anecdotes from the contributors building towards an inevitable and poignant climax.

I’m not clear on whether or not I’ve maintained my attention because I know Najiba – she works for the College of Journalism – Or because the poignant first-hand accounts are so effective because of the simple presentation?

I’m reckoning on the elements of storytelling playing a big part in it holding my attention not least because of the final segment when Najiba and the soldier talk to each other 30 years after the event.

Part One

Listen: WITNESS Afghan Coup part 1
Part Two

Listen: WITNESS Afghan Coup part 2

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