After Such Knowledge, what Forgiveness?: My Encounters with Kurdistan

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Westview Press, 1998 - History - 356 pages
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Years ago, noting that Kurds—the largest ethnic group in the world without their own country—were involved in every major story he covered in Iran, Israel, Turkey, Lebanon, and Iraq, veteran reporter Jonathan Randal decided to produce this first-hand report on Kurdistan, a shocking, tragic account of diplomacy and politics in the Middle East, and a gripping adventure story about being a war reporter in the 1990s.Throughout the Kurds’ history, world powers have promised to help them achieve autonomy, and each time the Kurds have been betrayed. But they are also masters of betrayal: Randal, recording their talent for vehement internecine warfare and their gift for friendship, takes us behind the headlines to the inner story of power politics in the Middle East. His sympathetic knowledge of Kurdish history and his unparalleled access to Kurdish leaders and to diplomats, ministers, intelligence agents, warriors, and journalists makes him the only writer able to get this story for us and discover the truth.

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Review: After Such Knowledge, What Forgiveness?: My Encounters With Kurdistan

User Review  - Ben - Goodreads

Want to understand why the Kurds are fighting so hard for autonomy in Iraq? Read this book and you'll get a better idea. Read full review

Selected pages


Have You Notified Your Next of Kin?
After Such Knowledge What Forgiveness?
Died and Gone to Heaven
Alchemy Gold Coins into Horseshoes
Kissinger Missionary Work Among a Hill Tribe
The Blind Beggar Ecumenical Arbaeen
All Chemical
Turkeys Social Earthquake
Dogs Breakfast

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Page 166 - Excellency . . . our movement and people are being destroyed in an unbelievable way with silence from everyone. We feel, your Excellency, that the US has a moral and political responsibility towards our people who have committed themselves to your country's policy.'** The Shah got his deal; the Kurds were abandoned.
Page 167 - Committee's possession clearly show that the President, Dr. Kissinger and the foreign head of state [the shah] hoped that our clients [the Kurds] would not prevail. They preferred instead that the insurgents simply continue a level of hostilities sufficient to sap the resources of our ally's neighboring country [Iraq].
Page 123 - Iraq recognize the right of the Kurds living within the boundaries of Iraq to set up a Kurdish Government within those boundaries and hope that the different Kurdish elements will, as soon as possible, arrive at an agreement between themselves as to the form which they wish that Government should take and the boundaries within which they wish it to extend and will send responsible delegates to Baghdad to discuss their economic and political relations with His Britannic Majesty's Government and the...
Page 24 - No restriction shall be imposed on the free use by any Polish national of any language in private intercourse, in commerce, in religion, in the press or in publications of any kind, or at public meetings.
Page 24 - No restrictions shall be imposed on the free use by any Turkish national of any language in private intercourse, in commerce, relation in the press, or in publications of any kind or at public meetings.
Page 3 - To those bred under an elaborate social order few such moments of exhilaration can come as that which stands at the threshold of wild travel.
Page 117 - Their religion is different [from that of others], and their laws and customs are distinct ... the Chiefs and Rulers of Kurdistan, whether Turkish or Persian subjects, and the inhabitants of Kurdistan, one and all are united and agreed that matters cannot be carried on in this way with the two Governments...
Page 33 - But there's another way for the bloodshed to stop, and that is for the Iraqi military and the Iraqi people to take matters into their own hands, to force Saddam Hussein, the dictator, to step aside, and to comply with the United Nations resolutions, and then rejoin the family of peace-loving nations.

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About the author (1998)

Jonathan C. Randal worked for years as a foreign correspondent for the New York Times, then for three decades as roving correspondent for the Washington Post. This book is the result of thirty years of his research, including numerous trips into Kurdistan. He lives in Paris.

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