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Dining With Terrorists


just finished reading a book last week, , its called "Dining With Terrorists" by a guy named Phil Rees. it is intended by him to be an account of his experiences with the variety of conflicts over the past thirty years which have at some point been reffered to as involving terrorists. this huy has been shooting documentaries since the seventies and seems to have a keen interest in wars and war zones. it is an intersting account of the wya in which terrorism is bandied about by so many sides in a conflict with little or no value for its meaning. this is not some terror-sympathetic novel of heroic freedom fighting, it is an attempt ot balance the media hype with genuine accounts from both sides.
some particularly harrowing stories are in there but there is also a dynamic overview of the transition of terror from the freedom fighters and nationalists to the Islamists of the modern day. its a genuine attempt to get behind the blurb and the headlines and it certainly left me feeling that terror is a vacuous word, such is its misuse.
the category of terrorism has been used to defend some apalling actions by both states and rebel groups, this guy has tales from most of the hot-spots, Egypt, Lebanon, Iran, Ireland, Basque Country, Colombian, Algeria and of course Afghanistan and Indonesia.
Though the writing gets tedious toward the middle and the points get blurred more often than not, it is a genuine and thoughtful reflection on a life spent trying to define a terrorist. The sense is that such a word is useless as it takes no account of subjective context and renders discussion futile. Good book and hopefully some of you will read it.
if not spotted another book on TPM this morning, its called "The plot against social security: how the bush plan is endangering our future" looks like a nice piece of reading for the internationally minded of you.
These book review things will be iregular and only coming after i read a genuinely good book which i think is worth passing on. If you do read the second one let me know what you think, also if you read the Terrorist one, leave a comment and have a discussion with me.
Red Rover

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