Saturday, October 29, 2005

Blinded By the Sunlight

My apologies for the slow posting. I am reading Matthew McAllester's book "Blinded By the Sunlight". It's a great read.

I note on the Amazon sight that people either loved it or hated it. I think the people that hated it were looking for some sort of non-fiction analysis of Saddam's Iraq or the war. Instead, the book is about McAllester's personal experience in the prison system of Saddam's Iraq; what he saw and what he felt. It is what most of us imagined and possibly worse. I will give you more of a review after I read it.

Interesting points so far is that the mood of Baghdad Iraqis swings back and forth from rooting for the Americans (however, privately and quietly) to rooting for the regime when they feel that it is taking the American's too long to come so they decide that they will not be released from prison and it is better to root for the devil you know just in case he finds out you harbored secret joy for his over throw.

It thought this was interesting because it seems to be the same attitude that is repeated over and over even after the regime fell. Rebuilding is not quick enough. Insurgents are not stopping quick enough. Law and order is not quick enough. Jobs are not quick enough. Etcetera, etcetera...

Based on McAllester's take it is largely about people being free for once and believing that the regime change will magically change their lives, like a fairy godmother who sees, knows and does all with the flick of her wand. And, from this perspecitve, it is understandable.

McAllester was not the only reporter taken prisoner, by the way.

1 comment:

Gadfly said...

I saw a documentary about Saddam's torture prison. Holy Mother of God! I used to be a paramedic and I've seen some torment in my day ... but some of the crap that went on ... I can't tell you. I don't want to be responsible for people puking on their keyboards.