Once, Twice, Three Times A Teacup--Liar! Krakauer's Expose`"Three Cups Of Deceit"

by Sig7. November 2012 20:40

A long time ago I wrote a book, “Escaping the Twilight.” It is a book that most publishers did not want to publish because it dealt with the very daunting aspects of Female Genital Mutilation. In this book, I describe the life of woman living under the twin scourges of ancient culture and Islam’s protection and continuation of the culture. I will talk about this subject in the future on this blog. Let me just say for now, that I am steeped in knowledge of Islamic customs, culture and religion. Furthermore, because my husband and I worked for ten years with Afghans in exile in Pakistan during the Russian invasion, I know a few things about the people, the customs and workings of the countries.

Well, my book got published in the end anyway, and has made its way through book-clubs and a few universities, dealing with the subject of Medical Anthropology. Whenever I spoke in the past on the subject, well-meaning ladies would pipe up at the end and flute, “did you read “Three Cups of Tea” and what do think about this wonderful book and all the achievements of Mr. Mortenson. In every case I had to answer that I believed many passages of the book to be sheer fantasy, and then I would state my reasons why I believed that to be so. It never failed but that the dear ladies would be angry and dismayed with me for my critique of “this wonderful book!”

I must have explained at least twenty times that for example Mortenson’s kidnapping scene by Pathans with its subsequent strange and outlandish reversal is a totally manufactured set out of Hollywood. First off, the Mujahedeen responsible for my husband’s and my safety would have never allowed us any contact with elements unapproved by them personally. We could not have contacted anyone without their approval. Because they, our guides and interpreters, were personally held responsible for our persons by their superiors and they covered our wherewithal minute by minute for that very reason.

One of the young men guarding us from attacks by the KGB and Al Qaeda once told me: “We will die three times over before anyone will get to you.” We trusted these men totally with lives and our possessions. The right people in the Afghan culture live by an ancient code that proscribes that the guest who comes on friendship to their home lives under the protection of the entire clan.

Having said all that, you must realize that Mr. Mortenson would have never been left in a vulnerable position as he claims in his book. But was only one instance that I found to be untruthful. There were other things that did not ring true. The way he described building his schools for girls in Swat Valley and other places sounded impossible without the help of government officials and local infrastructure. It galled me for many years that he should have gotten away telling so many lies, basking in the adulation of decent Americans who blindly believed a man whom they thought to be good to the core.

Well, a while ago a book was released by Jon Krakauer. The name Krakauer will be very familiar to those of you who read books of fiction and popular subjects. Mr. Krakauer’s book is entitled “Three Cups of Deceit,” and he has done what I could not, namely with the help of a research team gone into the Pakistany regions, where Mortenson claimed he worked his magic. His book is an amazing work of detective discovery. Minute by minute he points out the mountains of lies concocted by this “wonderful” educator of Islamic girls.

Why would Mr. Krakauer have become so passionate about this book and Mortenson’s organization the Central Asia Institute, become so intent of uncovering Mortenson’s secret? Five millions of copies of the Three cups of Tea are in print and countless people have send millions to the institute so that Holy Man Mortenson could build more schools and counter radical Islam through education. The people who come to his talks adore him with a passion reserved for saints.

Well here is the reason: Mr. Krakauer was taken in by the charlatan himself. Together with President Obama Krakauer sent large amounts of money to the Institute, only to find out that very little of the largess ever reached the little girls in Pakistan. I, who was never taken in by Mortensen, lost no money but was dealt with angrily when I tried to point out incongruities, was furious, but Krakauer, a believer and disciple for a while, was struck to the core.

Krakauer’s book is a superb blow by blow account as he dismantles the Mortenson the liar. I highly recommend it.









Comments (1) -

Anglea Chisolm
Anglea ChisolmUnited States
12/31/2012 7:27:18 AM #

Thank you so much for your articles, I will share your link in my facebook.


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About the author

Born in Germany in 1941, Sigrid Weidenweber remembers the horrific aftermath of Fascism. At the end of the war, she found herself living under Communism. Both of these totalitarian regimes left indelible marks on her psyche and a healthy distrust of government’s, usurping too many powers to control people, supposedly for their own good. After the Berlin Wall was built, she managed to escape the repressive environment with the help of friends and a French passport. To this day she does not speak French.

She holds degrees in medical technology, psychology and an Honorary Doctor of Letters from Concordia University of Portland, Oregon for her trilogy "The Volga Flows Forever."

 Her first published book, “Escaping the Twilight,” deals with aspects of medical anthropology in an Islamic culture. In her trilogy the Volga Flows Forever, she brings to life Catherine the Great in her multiple roles as monarch, woman--lover, mother, grandmother and head of the general staff of the army, in volume one. The following two historical volumes deal with the Volga Germans brought to Russia by Catherine's edict.  The last book, “From Gulag to Freedom,” describes the lives of Russian-Germans and minority populations under Stalin’s regime and the systematic eradication of these minorities. The last part of the book is a comparison of communism, Russia, versus free enterprise in the USA. The heroin of the book settles in Fresno, California.

Three years ago she moved to Santa Rosa Valley, California from Portland Oregon. She has passionately embraced California together with her family that also resides here.

Always active, lecturing on historical and anthropological subjects and being a part of arts and culture in Portland, Oregon, she bestrode the same path when she came to California and is active on the Northwest Symphony League Board.

At present she is writing a memoir of her early childhood during WW I and later young adulthood under Communism.


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