Sunday, October 23, 2005

Where am I to go now that I've gone too far

Richard Clarke, long time counter-terrorism policy official and author of Against All Enemies, an attack on the Bush administration's terror policy, has written a thriller called Scorpion's Gate. Gary Hart writes that the book is useful since it makes you think about our oil addiction and dysfunctional relationship with Saudia Arabia. He also, in a nice way, says that the writing really sucks, as in "Graham Greene and John le Carre are under no threat from Clarke." The plot does sound interesting, so if you like to tackle such issues through fiction you may like it. Otherwise I would pick up Bob Baer's Sleeping with the Devil, the subtitle of which "How Washington Sold Our Soul for Saudi Crude," gives you a sense of what it is like. He is no bomb thrower mind, but an ex-CIA operative.

Baer's book seems to have hit home as he is hard to find. For a class I took this year, each student had to interview three current or ex-policy people relevant to their topic. My friend wrote about Saudi policy and wanted to interview Baer. Our professor told her, "Bob Baer is unreachable." Creepy.

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