Sunday, March 16, 2008

Young Osama

Osama bin Laden’s old school—the Al Thagher Model School—sits on several dozen arid acres lined by eucalyptus trees, whose branches have been twisted by winds from the Red Sea. The campus spreads north from the Old Mecca Road, near downtown Jedda, the Saudi Arabian port city where bin Laden spent most of his childhood and teen-age years. The school’s main building is a two-story rectangle constructed from concrete and fieldstone in a featureless modern style. Inside, dim hallways connect two wings of classrooms. In bin Laden’s day—he graduated in 1976—there was a wing for middle-school students, and another for the high school. more