Dan Terry (1946-2010) was a Methodist aid worker who served as a humanitarian in Afghanistan for thirty years. His work was a combination of community development in remote villages and peacemaking among warring factions (warlords, the Taliban, invading Allied forces, etc.). He counted Taliban commanders among his friends, negotiated for hostage releases, and coordinated the ground effort for a massive famine-relief effort to the Hazara people in 1999. He successfully negotiated between a Taliban commander and American forces in an agreement that likely saved dozens of civilian lives. “Access to each other across divisions and frontiers—sustaining contact, sustaining commitment—is the very essence of what needs to be done together,” wrote Terry. “In Afghanistan, the first and last thing to do is acknowledge conflict [and] invest in one’s enemies.” Terry was killed in a massacre of foreign aid workers in August 2010, which included MCC worker Glen Lapp. The killers are not known, and their purposes for targeting Terry and his party are also unclear.
Submitted by David Weaver-Zercher