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The Fall of Baghdad

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  252 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
For every great historical event, seemingly, at least one reporter writes an eyewitness account of such power and literary weight that it becomes joined with its subject in our minds-George Orwell's Homage to Catalonia and the Spanish Civil War; John Hersey's Hiroshima and the dropping of the first atomic bomb; Philip Gourevitch's We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Wil ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published September 23rd 2004 by Penguin Press HC, The (first published January 1st 2004)
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Dec 29, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book in a similar vein to that of Dexter Filkins' The Forever War, in that the author, immersed within the Iraqi capital city in those incredibly tense, strained, and ominous days prior to the unleashing of Shock and Awe—and how the newspapers loved to see that phrase so crisp and stark upon the printed page—quietly, thoughtfully, and non-partisanly provides a running account of the effect of this expectant state-of-affairs, and the subsequent ruinous aftermath of billowing smoke, cratered te ...more

This is a great book. I went for it because I'd read his "Guerillas" and noticed the top-shelf plaudits from everywhere, bringing up the usual hyperbolic comparisons with Orwell, etc.

It's not that Anderson's book isn't excellent. It's really, REALLY great. I just get picky when people start throwing around the greats every time they like something. Probably because I have a tendency to do so, too.

Anyway- Anderson writes extremely well: lucidly and evenly paced, with that slight tinge of English
David P
Nov 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: current-events, war
This is a significant book, recommended to anyone who tries to puzzle out the second Gulf War, which as of this month--December 2004--still goes on. It suggests no clear-cut solutions, but then again, no one at the present time has any. What you get is an eyewitness account by a reporter who covered Baghdad on the eve of the war and who stayed at his post throughout the take-over and its aftermath.

It is quite a story, a view of the war from the Iraqi side. True, most people the author interact
Hai Quan
May 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The propaganda arm of the Mafia Bosses , namely most if not all owners of the mass media, from newspapers , magazines, televisions,broadcasting stations to publishers of books have done a very effective job to blind all people from the true pictures of every newsworthy events .

In all wars, they gave you only the pictures they want you to see.Particularly in the American invasion of Iraq, they shamelessly lied to all people of the world about how the American "liberators" were "welcomed" by the
Mubeen Irfan
Jan 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
We have all heard of the Iraq war and how it has proved to be the mother of all modern terror in world. Their are numerous books which debate this thesis, this book isn't one of them.

Jon Lee is a veteran journalist who has done something different than debating the pros and cons of American invasion of Iraq. He has written a memoir about the city itself, the city of Baghdad, which is also the birthplace of human civilization. The writer was in and out of Baghdad before, during and after the inva
Mar 04, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hookah
not bad, not stunningly brilliant. a few evocative images / characterizations of Baghdad on the eve of battle. Anderson gets points for his topic / staying on through the fall of Baghdad, but he is not an absolute stunner in style or characterization.

actually the thing is, of course, in a few decades everyone will agree that the 2003 invasion was inevitabl. what they'll criticize is the west's non-involvement in the congo war , or the millions' dead "great war of africa." that is called THE IRON
Jan 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I suppose the one silver lining to the inexplicable laziness of U.S. journalism in the run up to the Iraq War is that a wealth of critical and poignant reporting came out of the war itself. This book is joined by Assassin's Gate, Imperial Life in the Emerald City, The Forever War, The Good Soldiers, and Night Draws Near in the canon of American "Iraq books" that seem likely to endure. Anderson's book is unique among the group in that Anderson was living in Baghdad before, and concludes his book ...more
Aaron Shields
Nov 29, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
War is awful. All involved people are impacted drastically. Anderson's portrayal was powerful, and harrowing. I get his political bent as well, but it still got old that the majority of his portrayals of American troops involved them either being cruel, saying stupid stuff, or a combination of both. I'm sure he encountered American troops who did their job well, and weren't terrorizing Iraqi citizens while doing it. But I must have missed those depictions. Or maybe they didn't happen when he was ...more
Anh Ducharme
Such a well written book. Lee intersperses compelling portraits of Iraqi citizens, Iraqi history and adeptly portrays the build up and ensuing conflict in Baghdad. It is a thoughtful and touching book. I would highly recommend it.
A strong start and then it lagged, and was dogged by the author's obsession with a Saddam insider he befriended and the author's own questionable behavior as he put himself and his Iraqi fixers in precarious positions.
Apr 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wanna know about the wars we're fighting, but all the info seems too messy and opaque. Try this book, has an easy nonfiction novel reading style. A quick read and you'll realize that you now know more about the Iraq War than you thought you'd ever be able to get from one book.
Aug 23, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone.
A good, intimate intro into just how ugly all sides of this war have been.
Jun 25, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i definitely recommend this one. another viewpoint into the "shock and awe" bs, written be somone who was there. and had been there to be able to describe the before and after.
Oct 16, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Spectacular, eye-witness account of the Iraq War as told by a correspondent on the ground during the bombing and conflict. The people he meets are unforgettable.
Feb 06, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
this book was complicated but well written. sadly it was the most recent in our school library on Irag
Matt Wallace
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Jon Lee Anderson, a staff writer, began contributing to The New Yorker in 1998. Since then, he has covered numerous conflicts for the magazine, including those in Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Angola, Somalia, Sudan, Mali, and Liberia. He has also reported frequently from Latin America and the Caribbean, writing about Rio de Janeiro’s gangs, the Panama Canal, the 2010 earthquake in Hai ...more
More about Jon Lee Anderson...