Friday, August 18, 2006

Vermont to Pakistan

Pakistan just can't cut a break. When a white American woman, Catharine Mayo, became unruly on a London-to-Washington D.C., leading to a security scare and an emergency landing in Boston, a Pakistani connection seemed improbable.

But when the Associated Press sent a reporter to Mayo's hometown of Braintree (population: 1,200) in Vermont, the improbable became fact: Ms. Mayo has been a frequent visitor to Pakistan since 9/11. But unlike most of the visitors to Pakistan in the news lately, Ms. Mayo was neither a guest of one of the country's estimated 14,000 madressas nor did she meet any terrorist mastermind; instead she came to Pakistan to visit her boyfriend who was unable to secure a US visa.

Described by her son as a peace activist, Ms. Mayo published her views on American democracy in the Daily Times in 2003.

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