From Publishers Weekly
Long before the events of September 11, Vidal's place was secured as a prolific preacher against America's imperialist policies. At age 76, he uses his exceptional talents to produce bound collections of his controversial essays and op-eds. However, this latest creation lacks the eloquence and grace that previously distinguished him from other writers in their attempts to uncover the hidden truths within our American republic. Vidal calls for a more thorough investigation into the response, or lack thereof, from the "Cheney-Bush junta" on September 11 and purports that corporate greed and American imperialism have been the driving themes behind our new war on terror. He explores the oil connections that Osama bin Laden's family established with Bush during his tenure as an oil magnate in Texas and implores us to probe further into America's real interest in conquering Afghanistan. According to Vidal, America's media elite perform the government's dirty work by spreading disinformation-including about Vidal himself-to the general public. As a result, Vidal spends much of this book refuting attacks from the mainstream media that portray him as anti-American, although his unabashed style gives readers final say in drawing their own conclusion. Regardless, faithful fans of Vidal will revel in his relentless adoration of Jeffersonian ideals and courageous dissection of the evil roots of American foreign policy.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
We've all heard 9/11 compared to Pearl Harbor, but in one of the essays in this provocative and thoughtful collection, America's great literary dissenter finds deeper links. Both were seemingly inexplicable surprise attacks, but, Vidal argues, the "Cheney/Bush" (in that order, he assures us) "junta" knew 9/11 was coming as surely as FDR knew the Japanese would attack American interests in the Pacific. And just as Pearl Harbor got America into World War II, Cheney and Bush gleefully used 9/11 to begin a long war against enemies who just so happen to live amidst the oil reserves coveted by our executive branch (themselves former oil barons). Vidal backs his argument up with a stunning array of evidence culled from books, scholarly articles, and even the popular media he so despises. The essays on the so-called junta are, in and of themselves, worth the price of admission, but also included here are 10 Vidal articles published over the last decade, which discuss how, in the wake of World War II, America completely abandoned its republic for an imperial police state engaged in perpetual war. Vidal's talent for invigorating his polemics with lively prose and fierce wit (he describes Spiro Agnew as "Vice President to Richard Nixon and bribe-taker to many") shines throughout, and though some of the essays are dated, Vidalian vitriol never seems to go out of style. John GreenCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved