World 25 January 2010 About our cover star The mortar-man on the front of this week's issue Sign up for our weekly email * Print HTML The photographer responsible for the striking Afghanistan cover this week is Lucian Read. We dropped him a quick line to find out more about our cover star. Read, a busy man, dashed off the following email: He is mortar-man with Charlie Co 2nd Battalion 12 Infantry Regiment stationed in Afghanistan Pech Valley. The photograph was taken between fire missions on the morning of the presidential election [7 November 2009] when the company's base came under sustained fire from Taliban fighters in the surrounding mountainsides. › Why do the western media ignore Egyptian dissent? Jon Bernstein, former deputy editor of New Statesman, is a digital strategist and editor. He tweets @Jon_Bernstein. Subscribe from just £1 per issue More Related articles What does François Bayrou's endorsement of Emmanuel Macron mean for the French presidential race? What actually is Article 50? The small print that will trigger Brexit Who will win the Copeland by-election?