Greg Mortenson on War and Peace24:09

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Greg Mortenson with Sitara "Star" Schoolchildren. Afghanistan. (Central Asia Institute/
Greg Mortenson with Sitara "Star" Schoolchildren. Afghanistan. (Central Asia Institute/

Testimony in Washington today on Afghanistan, Pakistan and the new U.S. troop surge from commanding General Stanley McCrystal.

And testimony right here from "Three Cups of Tea" hero Greg Mortenson.

Greg Mortenson is the onetime mountaineer who famously left the climbing life to build schools — first in remote Pakistan, now in Afghanistan — in high mountains and in Taliban country.

The U.S. military reads Greg Mortenson. Now he’s reading them as well, and their new plans.

This hour, On Point: from "Three Cups of Tea," to war and peace, a conversation with Greg Mortenson.

You can join the conversation. Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.


Greg Mortenson, co-founder of the Central Asia Institute and founder of Pennies for Peace.  His nonprofit organization has built over 130 schools in the remote regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan.  His 2006 book "Three Cups of Tea" chronicles his journey from mountaineer to humanitarian.  He recently received the "Star of Pakistan," one of Pakistan's highest civil awards, for promoting peace through education and literacy. His new book is "Stones into Schools: Promoting Peace with Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan."
Read Chapter 1 of "Stones into Schools."

Plus, later this hour, Pakistani journalist Ahmed Rashid joins us from Lahore to discuss how President Obama's troop surge plan is reverberating through Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Ahmed Rashid is a Pakistani journalist and best-selling author. His most recent book is "Descent Into Chaos: How the war against Islamic extremism is being lost in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia."
Read Rashid's latest articles on Afghanistan.

This program aired on December 8, 2009.