Peshawar, Pakistan (CNN) — A photo album. A personal letter. A bravery reward for a U.S. Army captain. All were intended for U.S. service members stationed in Afghanistan, but instead are for sale in a Peshawar market.
The Pakistani market, close to the border with Afghanistan, is fabled for selling goods looted from U.S. military resupply convoys that pass through.
Because Afghanistan is landlocked, more than half of all U.S. supplies pass through Pakistan, a route hundreds of miles long through tribal badlands. And the route is coming under increasing attack.
The Taliban know by attacking trucks they can drive up the cost of the war. For the past few years, the cost of resupply convoys has been rising.
Even the main highways are becoming more dangerous. The largest recent attack came just outside the relatively secure capital, Islamabad. More than 80 vehicles were destroyed, including armored military hardware labeled for the U.S. Afghan surge or troops. As with all convoys, there were no U.S. forces and no security guards.
According to witnesses, it took just 12 gunmen a matter of a few minutes to turn a massive resupply mission into a mass of charred, twisted and useless wreckage.
One Pakistani trucker on the convoy who was shot in the attack told us he was lucky to be alive and that he won't be driving U.S. supplies again.
After the attack, the Taliban handed out fliers threatening drivers with death if they worked such a convoy again.
"A greedy person may work for double the pay," Ubaid Ullah Anwar tells CNN through an interpreter. "But it's like committing suicide and I won't do it."
At the port city of Karachi where some U.S. supplies come ashore, containers are stacking up, many because more and more contractors say they won't touch them.