TITLE: Accidental Victim – EPISODE: 22
The door was opened and Mustapha walked out into the
sunlight. He walked to the dining stall and requested for
food to eat. He had just began eating when two of Al-
Zawari’s lieutenants walked up to the table and stood
before him. ‘Al-Zawari wants to see you now’, one of them
said. ‘I’ll go to him when I’m through’, Mustapha replied.
‘He said now!, the second lieutenant said. Mustapha
looked up at them and was shocked. He washed his
hands, got up, and went with them.
On the way to the command centre, Mustapha looked at
the faces of the two men walking beside him, trying to
decipher what could be wrong, but their faces didn’t
betray any emotions. ‘That’s how they always look’, he
muttered and shrugged.
After walking for some minutes, they got to the command
centre. Mustapha walked in, and the two men walked in
Mustapha was surprised when he walked into the
command centre. The command centre was usually busy
with activities of men in different groups. But this time
around, everywhere was relatively quiet. Some of the
desks and the chairs had been cleared, and most of the
men were standing on opposite sides of the wall. Right at
the head of the file was Al-Zawari. He sat on a chair
behind a desk right in the front of the entrance to his
office. Mustapha saw a man kneeling in front of the desk.
He was still wondering what was happening when Al-
Zawari nodded towards his two lieutenants and they went
to stand behind him. He took a position beside a man
standing close to where the man knelt down.
‘Welcome’, Al-Zawari said while standing up from the
chair and spreading his palm towards all his men.
Mustapha looked around trying to understand what was
happening. All the men around him wore a frown on their
faces. No one said a word.
‘Some of you know why we are here’ Al-Zawari began,
‘but for those that don’t know, it’s quite sad to know that
there is a traitor among us.’
Some of the men began murmuring and looking at each
other and at the man that knelt down before them.
‘Quiet!’, Al-Zawari screamed, and the room was quiet once
‘We infiltrate others! No one, I repeat, no one infiltrates
us!!’, he boomed.’And if anyone has that guts to try it, that person must
have known the consequences beforehand.’
All the men stood in awe as Al-Zawari continued speaking.
‘I just got the information that we have an undercover
police officer among us…’
The men in the room began murmuring words to each
other and looking towards the man on the floor.
‘This man’, Al-Zawari said pointing at the man on his
knees, ‘is a traitor.’
‘And what do we do to traitors??’, Al-Zawari boomed.
‘Kashe! Kashe!! Kashe!!!’, some men chanted.
The men continued chanting, but Al-Zawari spread his
palms once again, indicating that they calm down.
Everywhere was quiet once again.
Mustapha looked at the man that knelt down on the floor.
His face was bruised and swollen from obvious beating.
He knew him. He even knew his name. He wondered if he
was really an undercover police officer. He never knew
anyone one else would have the guts to infiltrate the
Taliban camp. Then it struck him. He was shocked as he
thought about it.
The man on the floor was his namesake. He knew that,
but no one else knew. Everyone in the camp was known
by just one name and he was known by his other name,
Danladi. No one knew him as Mustapha. But the man on
his knees was known as Mustapha.
This was a case of mistaken identity. ‘How did Al-Zawari
get this information?!’, he wondered. He was getting
angry. ‘There must be a mole supplying Al-Zawari with
information’, he thought. ‘Why now?!’, he wondered. He
nearly screamed out in anger, but he controlled himself.
He looked at the man and pitied him. He was sobbing
now, trying to explain to Al-Zawari that he knew nothing of
what he was accused of. His pleas fell on deaf ears.
He had been trying to tell them he wasn’t a police officer,
but no one listened. He had been tortured to reveal
information he obviously didn’t have, but he didn’t bulge.
He maintained he wasn’t an undercover police officer.
‘He is a terrorist’, Mustapha said to himself, ‘one less man
to worry about’, as he thought about the fate that awaited
‘You have one last chance to confess’, Mustapha heard Al-
Zawari say, ‘else you would die.’ The sobbing and
pleading started once more.
So many thoughts were running through Mustapha’s
“How the hell did Al-Zawari know about this?”
“Who would have told him??”
“Where could the leak possibly have come from??”
“I can’t trust anyone anymore…”
“But I’ll need backup…”
“How am I going to handle this?”
Mustapha was so lost in thought that he was oblivious to
happenings around him.
The loud bang of a gun shot brought him back to his
senses. He heard another bang. And another. Three shots
Mustapha was shocked. He looked towards the man that
was once on his knees, but he was now sprawled on the
floor. Dead, with blood flowing down from his head.
‘Danladi!’, Al-Zawari called out. Mustapha responded as
he heard Al-Zawari call two other persons. They were
instructed to take the body out to be buried…
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