©2008 Amir Taheri; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
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An excellent topical treatment of Iran's obscure politics and the violent nature of the movement represented by Khomeini and his adherents. The conflict with modernity will doom this movement to defeat, but not before it causes monumental chaos at home and abroad. Taheri's coverage makes this a fascinating trip through the bazaar of Iranian politics and holds out little hope for peaceful resolution of the internal conflicts of Shiia Islam. Well narrated also. Highly recommended.
"a disappointing book"
I was preparing a trip to Iran and I was looking for a book that explains and analyses the recent historical and current political situation in over there.
I bought this book, as recommended by several sources, only to be shocked and appalled by the blatant propaganda of the neocon values, ridiculous statements on the 'eternal beauty' of the war and the American repeated 'cowardliness' in not deciding to use sophisticated weapons and unlimited financial sources in finishing with the evil of Iran! I am not an American, neither a Muslim, have no religious preferences, and do believe in democracy, and do condemn the horrible regime of Ahmadinejad. But after hearing this book, I feel abused and assaulted by the simplistic war propaganda, no analysis whatsoever, no deeper insight, no insight of any kind, for that matter. The book is an insult for the common sense, and I truly regret my time and money. Narration by Dean Robertson very good, though.
"Wish I'd done more research on Taheri"
Instead of looking online for reviews of this book by credible critics, I used the blasted star system and read the audible reviews. I was looking for a non-biased book on the subject (I know this isn't possible), and according to other reviewers I was getting the gold standard of history on the Iranian subject. Only a minute into the book and I notice it's just dripping with agenda. With my suspicions now piqued, I googled Taheri and found a some dirt. Not only is his bias well-known, but his capacity to invent facts is notorious. I guess some people like this kind of thing, but I'd rather skip the agenda and just learn what happened/what's happening.
Don't take my word for it though. There is a great article on the guy by Jonathan Schwarz in Mother Jones to start with, and countless others if you are still interested.
This is the gold standard in books on Iran, and what all others should be judged by. Amir Taheri presents one of the best historical situation reports ever. If you have any desire to know the truth about what's going on in Iran, this is a required read.
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