- Paperback: 288 pages
- Publisher: Basic Books; Reprint edition (August 7, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0465008046
- ISBN-13: 978-0465008049
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,958,242 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The New Killing Fields: Massacre and the Politics of Intervention Reprint Edition
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From Publishers Weekly
This compilation of 14 essays focuses on three of the world's bloodiest killing zones in the 1990s: Yugoslavia, Rwanda and East Timor. In a fascinating prefatory essay, editor Mills (The Triumph of Meanness: America's War Against Its Better Self) draws on such writers as Joseph Conrad and Primo Levi in tracing the evolution of the language of slaughter. Mills shows how writing about mass atrocities became more and more concrete, spare and factual as the scale of the killings increased over the last century. The writers examining Yugoslavia, Rwanda and East Timor share in that same literary tradition. Their essays are strong on factual presentation but restrained in moralizing. For each of the three killing zones under study, the editors include discussion of what has happened since the murders stopped. Of particular interest are the efforts in Rwanda and East Timor to create mechanisms for administering justice to those accused of crimes against humanity, generally modeled on South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The contributors to this volume-including Michael Walzer, William Shawcross and David Rieff-generally advocate intervention by the West whenever mass atrocities occur in places where Western pressure and even military action is possible (although the authors recognize that military force is not always the first or only resort). Given the frequency of anarchic mass slaughter in the 1990s, more such atrocities will likely occur in the decades ahead. Close observation and analysis of the kind demonstrated in this book will be essential to forming the nation's and the world's response.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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The essays themselves are an attempt by the various writers to help those of us in the West come to grips with the causes of genocide and our obligation to attempt to stop it. The argument is made that in Yugoslavia, for example, even the most minimal military intervention could have stopped the slaughter years earlier and that the Bosnian Serb forces in particular were nothing more than paper tigers. The "Powell Docterine" that has repeatedly led to a reluctance by the U.S. to use its military comes under particular criticism. The authors also tailor their remarks to the post-September 11th political realities.
Overall, a strong collectiion of political essays aimed at opinion leaders.
Some of the suggestions the authors detail for stopping genocide risk the West and especially the United States into becoming trustees to a failed genocidal state. A modern day colony by another name. Others suggest on how to interpret whether state murder is genocide as "When I see it, I will know it". Clearly the authors had difficulty with this subject. As the world becomes smaller, nations will learn sooner the defects of fellow regimes.