August 10, 2018

BRUCE BAWER: Death by Entitlement.

On August 7, the New York Times ran a story by Rukmini Callamachi about Jay Austin and Lauren Geoghegan, a young American couple, both graduates of Georgetown University, who decided to quit their humdrum office jobs and go on an epic bike ride and camping trip that would take them all over the world. “I’ve grown tired of spending the best hours of my day in front of a glowing rectangle, of coloring the best years of my life in swaths of grey and beige,” Austin wrote. “I’ve missed too many sunsets while my back was turned.”

So in July of last year, they flew from Washington, D.C., to Cape Town, and from there bicycled through South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, and Malawi to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. From there, they flew to Cairo, and after seeing the pyramids flew on to Casablanca, from which they cycled through Morocco, Spain, France, Monaco, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Greece, to Turkey. From there, another flight took them to Kazakhstan. They biked through Kyrgyzstan and entered Tajikistan. It was in that country that their journey came to an abrupt end this past July 29, when five ISIS members deliberately plowed their car into the two adventurers, killing them along with two temporary cycling companions, one from Switzerland and the other from the Netherlands. “Two days later,” wrote Callimachi, “the Islamic State released a video showing five men it identified as the attackers, sitting before the ISIS flag. They face the camera and make a vow: to kill ‘disbelievers.’”

Read the whole thing.

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