The Great War for Civilisation_ - Fisk,, MB for Civilisation. epub ( MB); ( MB). ACCLAIM FOR ROBERT FISK'S The GREAT WAR Great War for Civilisation include the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Can I place a. Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Starred Review. Combining a novelist's talent for The Great War for Civilisation: The Conquest of the Middle East - site edition by Robert Fisk. Download it once and read it on your site device.

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Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Starred Review. Combining a novelist's talent for . Robert Fisk went to the Middle East as a war correspondent in and made Beirut his home. He has written a tome pages - carefully . BOOK REVIEW ROBERT FISK, THE GREAT WAR FOR CIVILISATION: THE CONQUEST OF THE MIDDLE EAST (LONDON: HARPER PERRENIAL, ) As a. A sweeping and dramatic history of the last half century of conflict in the Middle East from an award-winning journalist who has covered the region for.

But as Fisk points out, "even Hitler's SS soldiers who were killed fighting the Americans around Bastogne in were identified and buried in marked graves".

General Tommy Franks was to repeat Schwarzkopf's one-liner about body counts in the Iraq war of , with Blair giving the unfortunate impression that he doesn't care.

Shackled, hooded, threatened with death by 'courts' that would give no leeway to defence or innocence: this was how every Arab secret police force dealt with enemies of the regime. Fisk tries to knit the whole book together round a chapter on his father and his experiences in the war, but it doesn't really work.

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Worse, it leads to oversimplification of history: the "extraordinary lenity" shown by the Allies to Turkey after the war, or the Northern Ireland conflict, "that legacy of British colonial rule". The book's second title remains a mystery; who has conquered the Middle East? The book contains a deplorable number of mistakes. Some are amusing: my favourite is when King Hussein's stallion unexpectedly "reared up on her hind legs".

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Christ was born in Bethlehem, not Jerusalem. Napoleon's army did not burn Moscow, the Russians did.

French: meurt means dies, not blooms. Russian: goodbye is do svidanya, not dos vidanya.

Farsi: laleh means tulip, not rose. Arabic: catastrophe is nakba not nakhba which means elite , and many more.

Other mistakes undermine the reader's confidence. Muhammad's nephew Ali was murdered in the 7th century, not the 8th century.

Baghdad was never an Ummayad city. The Hashemites are not a Gulf tribe but a Hijaz tribe, as far as you can get from the Gulf and still be in Arabia.

The US forward base for the Kuwait war, Dhahran, is not "scarcely miles" from Medina and the Muslim holy places, it is about miles. Britain during the Palestine mandate did not support a Jewish state.

The white paper on Palestine did not "abandon Balfour's promise" and he was not "Lord Balfour" when he made it. The Iraq revolution of was not Baathist. Britain did not pour military hardware into Saddam's Iraq for 15 years, or call for an uprising against Saddam in These last two "mistakes" occasion lengthy Philippics against British policy; others may deserve them, we do not. Nor does he much abet the argument by George W. Bush and Tony Blair that Islam is essentially a peaceful and gentle religion.

The Great War for Civilization by Robert Fisk

Most of the Muslims met here seem cruel and crazy, exemplifying Shelley's line about "bloody faith, the foulest birth of time. Unless one is an unconditional pacifist one must accept even the death of innocents. During World War II, , German children as well as half a million adults, mostly women were killed by Allied bombing.

It is possible utterly to deplore that bombing campaign while still believing that the war to defeat Hitler was just. Likewise there is a distinction between the violent consequences of the present operation in Iraq, and the question of how far it was wise or virtuous in the first place.

Both the ferocity with which the Americans waged the first gulf war, and the betrayal of the Marsh Arabs and the Kurds thereafter, are bitterly condemned by Fisk although he also describes with revulsion what the Iraqis did in Kuwait.

So should we not have fought that war at all? Or, having begun it, should we have pressed on to destroy Saddam Hussein the first time around?

The Great War for Civilisation : The Conquest of the Middle East

What some members of the administration of Bush the Elder said -- if we'd taken Baghdad, we would have owned the country -- has surely gained more force now, when exactly that has come to pass.

After all I have said, to add "more in sorrow" might seem a little hypocritical, but this review is, for what it's worth, written by someone who largely shares Fisk's broader outlook, if one can filter out the rage and exaggeration.

Western intervention -- once European, now American -- in that region has been too often malign in intention and lamentable in effect. Iraq itself is a creation of the British, in particular of Winston Churchill, and not the happiest legacy of empire, though one that may be unraveling thanks to the latest Western meddling.

But Fisk's condemnations, and his tone of voice, are so sweeping as to damage his own case.

He became particularly unpopular four years ago because of what he wrote after the attacks in New York: "This is not the war of democracy versus terror that the world will be asked to believe in the coming hours and days. It is also about American missiles smashing into Palestinian homes and U. Advertisement Continue reading the main story Nor does he allow for historical context. He denounces, for example, the coup in Iran, engineered by Kermit Roosevelt of the C.

As it happens, one of the conspirators is a neighbor of mine, a charming and courteous old gentleman who was a wartime hero before he swapped a Royal Navy uniform for the cloak and dagger of MI6, and to this day he is impenitent about that power play in the cold war.

The object of the exercise wasn't to "democratize the Middle East" but to keep the Soviets from reaching the Indian Ocean, and it succeeded.

If anything, I have more sympathy with that kind of realpolitik than for the weird mixture of ideology and deception we get from the present administration. All the same, there is plenty here to make us think again about where the region is heading, and why.In it, Fisk provides the historical context of the Armenian Genocide and includes his numerous interviews with survivors of the Genocide who are then living in Lebanon and Armenia.

Much of these chapters also detail with media coverage of the conflict and the terms used by them to describe both sides, most notably the word " terrorist ". When retaliatory attacks take place, the description is that of terror attacks upon Israel.

The second is the role that the Western news media has played in selling the conflict in the Middle East and manipulating the semantics of the conflict to soften the imbecility and arrogance of the policies of Western governments. Great War for Civilisation , 29— The Land of Graves.

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