GUERRILLAS: The men and women fighting today's wars.

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9780812920857: GUERRILLAS: The men and women fighting today's wars.
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Passionate, defiant, and idealistic, guerrillas evoke romantic images of the struggle for a just cause, giving them an almost mythical place among the bravest of warriors. Guerrillas takes us into their worlds, revealing their enigmatic and tumultuous lives. Veteran foreign correspondent Jon Lee Anderson reports from five different war fronts, creating a rich and penetrating portrait of an outlawed way of life in which physical courage and moral stamina are requisites to daily survival.
"Guerrillas," he writes, "are people living in defiance of their would-be conquerors, according to their own laws and beliefs, telling their own stories and legends - making history." Anderson weaves together their many stories - using the diverse voices of the guerrillas themselves - to bring us an extraordinary vision of individuals risking their lives in the struggle to change things. He takes us to a sniper's lookout across a line in the sand of the western Sahara; to a mujahedin "courtroom" in Afghanistan; to a Salvadoran village where fighters and farmers' children dance into the night; to the rubble-strewn streets of Gaza, where young Palestinians battle Israeli soldiers; and to the Burmese jungle, which for forty years has been a killing ground occupied by ethnic rebels and heavily armed government troops.
As strategic interests shift - and even evaporate - in the post-cold-war era, guerrilla movements, long the bloodiest feature of contemporary conflict, are changing rapidly and dramatically. This revealing book brings to light an international brotherhood of guerrillas, introducing us to their people and their concerns about family, religion, economics, law and order, and mythology.
Guerrillas is first-rate reporting and daring, riveting storytelling.

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From Publishers Weekly:

In this absorbing, instructive survey, Anderson, coauthor of War Zone, looks at five groups which "faithfully represent" the modern guerrilla: the mujahedin of Afghanistan, the Karen of Burma, the Polisario of Western Sahara, the Frente Farabundo Marti of El Salvador, and a group of Palestinians involved in the intifada along the Gaza Strip. Anderson is less interested in their armed anti-government activities than in demonstrating their common concerns about family, economics, law and order, and their self-created mythology. He makes the point that all guerrillas have creation myths, partly to justify the killing of other human beings, and partly to provide a spiritual basis for their actions. In novelistic detail Anderson provides examples of guerrilla justice, reviews the sexual attitudes of the five groups and describes their poignant attempts to live "normal" lives under dangerous circumstances. All guerrillas, he concludes, are crusaders fighting to fulfill ideals greater than themselves.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

Skillfully interweaving colorful vignettes drawn from visits to five diverse groups of guerrillas--the mujahedin of Afghanistan, the Karen of Burma, the Polisario of Western Sahara, the FMLN of El Salvador, and Palestinian youth in Gaza--journalist Anderson creates a tapestry that presents "what it is like to be a guerrilla in today's world." While sympathetic to their causes and plights, Anderson is more interested in the human dynamics that leads people to be "willing to sacrifice themselves for an ideal larger than themselves." Balancing a romantic awe with the gritty, mundane facts of the guerrillas' lives and deaths, Anderson does draw insightful generalizations while still evoking the individual uniqueness of each rebel he met. Representing quality journalism, this volume is recommended for all international affairs collections.
-James Rhodes, Luther Coll., Decorah, Ia.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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