Lindsey Hilsum: Sandstorm



Journalists really know how to write vividly I found this a really accessible way to wrap my head around this giant mess of a country At times Hilsum prioritized themes over chronology a timeline might not have been a bad addition to the front of the book with a map perhaps There were only a few times where that made me suint and read carefully though Overall it s a terrific work of Arab Spring documentary The edition I read I had an epilogue noting the 2012 death of Ambassador Stevens and how that added yet another ambiguous and messy fa I came to this late so the fault lies with me that I found the book dated Hilsum has still done an admirably thorough ob of pulling together the messy threads that were the early days of Libya s revolution This gripping account of the Libyan revolution brings its chaos and violence to life but the live on the street narrative style fails to consistently provide a context for the action or a coherent timeline In contrast the circumstances of addafi s rise to power and the major events that marked his four decades of idiosyncratic rule are described in the manner of a conventional history While I learned a lot about Libya from this book it left me with uestions than answers In a sense that characteristic provides the greatest insight into the Libyan revolution which is an event still in search of its ultimate meaning Libya emerged from forty two years of bizarre autocracy and promptly fractured into a patchwork of tribal fiefdoms It still remains to be seen whether it will ever coalesce into a modern state A very. Over a uarter century the renowned British international correspondent Lindsey Hilsum has covered crisis and conflict around the world In February 2011 at the first stirrings of revolt she went to Libya and began to chronicle the personal stories of people living through a time of unprecedented danger and opportunity She reported the progress of the revolution on the ground from the conflict of the early months through the toppling of Gaddafi’s regime and his savage death in the desert In Sandstorm she tells the full story of the events of the rev.

Interesting account of the real life intrigue and incidents leading upto the Libyan revolution and overthrow of Colonel Gaddafi Helped me get a better understanding of the region and the times The book is written in a very objective manner and I appreciated that this let the reader draw hisher own conclusions regarding the people and politics involved Interspersing history with current events and introducing the everyday people caught in the conflict were commendable factors though I thought both aspects could have been reduced in freuency The Free Generation Movement was inspirational while Wanise Elisawi s life made me introspect the sinister undercurrents in international politics as well as the continuing battle between those who have power and those who don t was driven home well Definitely recommend the book In the early months of 2011 the Arab world was shaken apart by the cry of revolutions Beginning with Tunisia the Arab Spring as it came to be called as uickly spread to other states such as Egypt Libya Bahrain and Syria After years of subjugation and repression under autocratic and ruthless dictatorial regimes the people in these countries guided by the tech savvy and social media inspired younger generation took to the streets demanding for a change towards democracy This book is an unbiased first hand account of the revolution in Libya leading to the fall of Gaddafi regime written by an able war correspondent who weathered the vagaries of a near civil war to bring truth before the worldThrowing light on the causes that led to the onset. Olution within a rich context of Libya’s history of colonialism monarchy and dictatorship and explores what the future of Libya holds Sandstorm follows the stories of six individuals taking us inside Gaddafi’s Libya as events unfold change accelerates and those who had never before dared to speak tell their stories for the first time We see the dynamics of the insurrection both from inside the regime and through the eyes of the men and women who found themselves starting a revolution Woven into her account is a revelatory exposé of the

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Of the revolution the author explains using testimonies of the most significant stakeholders Libyan people how the prevalent corruption and high handedness of the violent Gaddafi regime not only thwarted institution building but also led to extra udicial killings of a large number of common people accused of dissent The book also reflects on the past incidents which establish Gaddafi as a rogue despot and Libya as a Pariah state using terrorism to achieve its ends By giving voice to the rebels and regime players the author has reconstructed the entire chronology of the uprising in a manner which is easily comprehensible to the reader The book also contains sufficient material which unearths the duplicity of the West as it dealt with the growing protests in Libya and elsewhere such as Bahrain differently ostensibly to safeguard its own interests in the volatile middle east region Most importantly the book sounds caution as the transition government established after the fall of Tripoli went about carrying out its business Even as the people were basking in the toppling of forty two year old ruthless regime cracks appeared in the new government apparatus leaving the all too apparent divisions in the Libyan society for the world to see If the events in the last six years are anything to go by one can safely conclude that the warnings and apprehensions expressed by the author in the concluding pages of the book seem to be vindicated Overall an enlightening book for anyone who seeks to enlighten themselves about the Arab Spring as it played out in Libya. Ysfunctional Gaddafi family the scale of whose excesses almost surpasses belief She tells the stories of Libyans who lived in the United States or Europe but went home to risk everything to provide secret intelligence or commit daring acts of civil disobedience to bring the regime down knowing that the punishment if caught would be torture and death The fall of Gaddafi who was for forty two years the great autocrat madman on the world stage is among the past decade’s most dramatic pivot points In Lindsey Hilsum it has found its definitive chronicl.

Lindsey Hilsum is the author of In Extremis the Life of War Correspondent Marie Colvin 2018and Sandstorm Libya in the Time of Revolution 2012 She is the international editor of Channel 4 News and has covered many of the conflicts of recent times including Syria Ukraine and Libya as well as the Trump administration terror attacks in Europe and refugee movements She was Beijing Bureau