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How a librarian beat Al Qaeda and became a cultural hero




“The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu and Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts”
by Joshua Hammer
“The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu and Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts” by Joshua Hammer

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Librarians aren’t often thought of as the world’s most daring citizens. But when one librarian came face-to-face with Al Qaeda in the 1980s, he began a quest to protect and preserve ancient manuscripts that were surely facing doom.

It sounds like something out of a Hollywood screenplay, but the story of Abdel Kader Haidara is real. His experience is now the subject of Joshua Hammer’s latest book, “The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu and Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts.” Hammer joins Patt Morrison.

Guest:

Joshua Hammer, former bureau chief for Newsweek and the author of “The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu and Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts