— The Erimtan Angle —

It has been quite a few years now since Jeremy Scahill told the world about Blackwater and its nefarious actions, but now he is set to be back on people’s minds bothering administrations in an attempt to bring truth to the people: Dirty Wars follows investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill into the heart of America’s covert wars, from Afghanistan to Yemen, Somalia and beyond. Part political thriller and part detective story, Dirty Wars is a gripping journey into one of the most important and underreported stories of our time (29 November 2013).

The freelance journalist and researcher Dawn Paley tells us that “Scahill’s latest book, Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefield [, released on 23 April] . . .  is a valuable volume for those wishing to better understand how current and past events in Mexico and Central and South America connect to the so-called war on terror. A must-read for anyone wanting to learn more about the US drone wars and targeted kill programs, Dirty Wars is a bit slow going off the top, but before long, Scahill introduces compelling characters and provides readers with access to entire families who have been adversely impacted by US war policies in Yemen and elsewhere. Dirty Wars also contains a number of items of specific interest to folks whose interests lie south of the US border. Using carefully gathered evidence, Dirty Wars makes it clear that American military campaigns do little more than exacerbate existing situations. Sadly, this is as true in the Western hemisphere as it is in the Middle East. Scahill carefully documents how the militaristic approach taken by the US government towards perceived terror threats in Somalia, Yemen and elsewhere has served to drive up the influence of local armed groups”.[1]

As such, Scahill wants to create a new meaning for the term ‘dirty wars’, which has been in use since the seventies to describe “state repression against political opponents, trade unionists and civilians in the Southern Cone (Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay, Brazil and Bolivia)”,[ii] as Paley reminds us. Scahill’s Dirty Wars clearly refer to what is happening today, as the U.S. is flexing its covert military muscle. On the film’s dedicated website this can be read: “Investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill stumbles upon a US night raid gone badly wrong in a remote corner of Afghanistan, where a witness swears to having seen American soldiers digging bullets out of the bodies of pregnant dead women. Scahill’s investigation leads him to unravel the secret manoeuvres of the shadowy and powerful Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) as he is drawn into a world of covert operations unknown to the public and carried out across the globe by men who do not exist on paper and may never appear before Congress. In military jargon, JSOC teams “find, fix, and finish” their targets, who are selected through a secret process. No target is off limits for Obama’s “kill list,” including US citizens. From Afghanistan to Yemen and Somalia, as well as back home in New York where he tries to piece the puzzle together, Scahill meets with Special Forces operators, military generals and US-backed warlords who go on camera and on the record—some for the first time. He tracks down the survivors of targeted assassinations and drone strikes, including the family of the first American citizen being hunted by his own government. Described as “a mystery thriller as compelling as any feature film” by The Huffington Post, Dirty Wars is also a New York Times Bestselling book (Serpent’s Tail publishers) by Jeremy Scahill on the same topic, exhaustively researched and footnoted”.[3]

[1] Dawn Paley, “Scahill’s ‘Dirty Wars’ Offers Lessons for Latin America” Upside Down World (10 July 2013). http://upsidedownworld.org/main/international-archives-60/4370-scahills-dirty-wars-offers-lessons-for-latin-america.

[2] Dawn Paley, “Scahill’s ‘Dirty Wars’ Offers Lessons for Latin America”.

[3] “FILM SYNOPSIS” Dirty Wars. http://dirtywars.org/blog.


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