Battlefields in the Garden of Eden

There's a delicious secret shared by veteran journalists reporting on Kashmir. It's called Butt's Houseboats. The chance for a correspondent to return to Gulam Butt's stately pine-paneled cabins on the shores of Dal Lake, gaze up at the snowy Himalayas and feast under chandeliers on minced goat curry, spiced spinach and cardamom tea, has for years helped keep the conflict near the top of the news agenda. The guest book, filled with enraptured reporters' reviews, contains some of the most earnest writing many of these war hacks have ever produced. "Once more, an island of sanity and calm in a sea...

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