Jon Lee Anderson: Guerrillas Journeys in the Insurgent World

This book gives the accounts of many guerrilla forces spanning the globe very interesting chilling lucid true This is very clearly a book that was a product of a pre 911 world Anderson looks at five different guerilla groups Western Sahara s Polisario Front the Karen of Burma the mujahadeen of Afghanistan the Palestinians in Gaza and the FMLA of El SalvadorParts of this book were really insightful and useful and opened my mind to ideas and expressions I hadn t properly considered The rest was garbage I found the descriptions of people as exotic troublesome and I felt the portrayal of women when it was actually done because women seemingly disappeared in this book he did not speak to many of them were completely condescending Calling a Palestinian Read the whole thing No apes A uick interesting survey of five revolutionaryguerrilla movements of the late 80searly 90s the FMLN of El Salvador the shabab of Gaza s first intifada the mujaheddin of Afghanistan Afghan not Arab the Karen of Burma and the Polisario of Western Sahara The best aspect of of the book is extensive uotes and slices of everyday life from rank and file fighters Anderson himself can sometimes be an intrusive narrative presence and he plays up a little too excitedly the exotic nature of the people and places he covers In general however he lets the guerrillas stories stand without too much embellishment and he is appropriately clear eyed not only about the repressive circumstances that birth these movements but also the unwholesome anti democratic and sometimes violent means guerrilla leadership use to maintain control of civilian populations and their own fighters First published in 1992 it s also nice from a historical perspective Worth a read A really interesting in field report on some groups most peopl. Prior to gaining international renown for his definitive biography of Che Guevara and first hand reporting on the war in Ira for the New Yorker Jon Lee Anderson wrote Guerrillas a pioneering account of five diverse insurgent movements around the world the mu.

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Em what they re thinking He rarely uses uotes from his informants Granted the author does not bill this as an ethnographic piece But he and his reviewers call it reporting That s true only in the vein of scandal sheets and racist propaganda posters He does a disservice to those he writes about and to all reportersWords like condescension arrogance and colonialism ring through my head as I read this book A famed writer with the New Yorker I d expect fine writing deep research wit and indeed a little arrogance Sadly all I found was the last and in much greater uantity than I ever expected Jon Lee Anderson needs to take a refresher course in Social Amnesia journalism and he should consider a few cultural anthropology courses to boot It is crazy to read this book in 2018 a vital anthropological look at the universal roots of violent revolutionary rebellions and the individuals behind these movements Informative and educating though sometimes it drags on with uite a bit of meaningless detail I ve come to expect this from the kind ofournalism meant to be entertaining enough like regular television that it might likely keep the masses reading and watchingThe first few chapters are of the most important educating use to me The rest gets bogged down by too much detail both graphic and personal paces like the speed of guerrilla conflict and resolves itself to focus less on functions and uses practical information on the goings on and on uotes and physical detailsBeyond Ch 3 it is definitely not as necessary to read for those interested in learning about guerrilla These first few are hopeful and the core of a movement And the rest when readers skim the small stuff is about the many challenges to that original ideal and how individuals groups and movements as a whole adapt to the changing environmen. Erful firsthand storytelling with balanced penetrating analysis of each situation A work of phenomenal range analytical acuity and human empathy Guerrillas amply demonstrates why Jon Lee Anderson is one of our most important chroniclers of societies in crisi.

E wouldn t be able to communicate with A rare and objective psychological portrait if at times risking slight romanticization Good book Focus on three different Guerrilla movements the Polisaro in Morocco indigenous tribesmen in Burma and rebels in central America More about their lives aspirations and the systems they have built and maintain to reject their oppressors My opinion of this book after only 20 pages was that it was horrible Having completed it that initial opinion is wholly confirmedThe author is imperialistic and definitely has a colonial outlook especially as it regards Western Sahara He fails to ever look at himself or his own Western culture never turning his microscope onto his own preconceptions sympathies and nationalism He never uestions how symbols are used by the guerillas and their followers nor does he ever look outside these communities in order to see how they fit in navigate and struggle against the larger contextHe describes the people who are guerillas as almost without the ability to think for themselves If they are supporters they are portrayed as either megalomaniacal leaders or manipulated puppets He tries to correctly point out some techniues that are ideological indoctrination but his overall approach is to diminish or eliminate the humanity and agency of the populationFurther he writes fluid and beautiful prose to describe the landscape how the sand dunes meet the sky the sun etc But when describing people especially the common bystander he dredges up racist and condescending language I feel like he s describing his day at the zoo only the exhibits are filled with human beings and the author can t see that only a sensationalized story to tell his friends the next day at the water coolerHe guesses at people s opinions rather than asking th. Jahedin of Afghanistan the FMLN of El Salvador the Karen of Burma the Polisario of Western Sahara and a group of young Palestinians fighting against Israel in the Gaza Strip Making the most of unprecedented direct access to his subjects Anderson combines pow.

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Jon Lee Anderson a staff writer began contributing to The New Yorker in 1998 Since then he has covered numerous conflicts for the magazine including those in Syria Lebanon Libya Ira Afghanistan Angola Somalia Sudan Mali and Liberia He has also reported freuently from Latin America and the Caribbean writing about Rio de Janeiro’s gangs the Panama Canal the 2010 earthuake in Hai