"Asylum-seeker"; "refugee". All the major British political parties have brought these words to the top of the political agenda. Some newspapers shout about the swarms of refugees arriving on our shores; others criticize our government's lack of humanitarian principles. But what do we know about the refugees themselves what it means to leave your home, your family, your past?
Rose George has travelled to Liberia and Ivory Coast and also met refugees in Britain to discover what really happens when you are uprooted by war, greed and guns, or - as Liberians put it - when you've been "running, running, running" for fourteen years non-stop; when you've rebuilt your house five times, and it's been looted six times, so you don't bother putting glass in the windows anymore; when, like Francis Flade Nemlin, you're a well-paid NGO worker one minute, and a refugee in a transit centre with sixteen dependents only two weeks later. "Anyone can become a refugee," he says. "Why not?" Challenging the preconceptions of both sides of the political establishment, A Life Removed is a searing indictment of our failure to empathize.