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In Iraq, ex-interpreter makes his mark as tattoo artist
In Iraq, ex-interpreter makes his mark as tattoo artist

The short, chubby Iraqi interpreter watched as the massively biceped American soldiers he worked for shot hoops during their breaks from guarding the Baghdad airport. It was 2006, and although Mohammed Akram Taher, 17, shared the troops' love of motorcycles and Metallica, he couldn't compete with them on the basketball court. So he sat on the sidelines, sketching. One day, an Army sergeant from Los Angeles glimpsed the Baghdad native's artwork: macabre drawings of grinning skulls and demons. The sergeant was intrigued. He happened to be a tattoo artist with a sleeve of tats on each arm. "You should do tattoos," the sergeant told Taher, who, like most...

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