The Shadow World is the harrowing behind-the-scenes tale of the global arms trade, revealing the deadly collusion that all too often exists among senior politicians, weapons manufacturers, felonious arms dealers, and the military—a situation that compromises our security and undermines our democracy.
Pulling back the curtain on this secretive world, Andrew Feinstein reveals the corruption and the cover-ups behind a range of weapons deals, from the largest in history—between the British and Saudi governments—to the guns-for-diamonds deals in Africa and the imminent $60 billion U.S. weapons contract with Saudi Arabia. He exposes in forensic detail both the formal government-to-government trade in arms and the shadow world of illicit weapons dealing, and lays bare the shockingly frequent links between the two. Drawing on his experience as a member of the African National Congress who resigned when the ANC refused to launch a corruption investigation into a major South African arms deal, Feinstein illuminates the impact this network has not only on conflicts around the world but also on the democratic institutions of the United States and the United Kingdom.
Based on pathbreaking reporting and unprecedented access to top-secret information and major players in this clandestine realm, The Shadow World places us in the midst of the arms trade's dramatic wheeling and dealing—from corporate boardrooms to seedy out-of-the-way hotels—and reveals the profound danger and enormous financial cost this network represents to all of us.
©2011 Andrew Feinstein (P)2011 Tantor
"This book is essential [listening] for anyone who cares about justice, transparency, and accountability in both the public and private spheres, and for anyone who believes that it is more important to invest in saving lives than in the machinery of death." (Archbishop Desmond Tutu)
The author seems knowledgable enough but he gets lost in the weeds. There are just scores of details about whose brother-in-law works at which lobbying firm. This is not a book of intrigue and crime. It is much closer to an encyclopedia of mid-level bribes.
As for the performance, the narrator is great except when he reads quotes from Americans and rolls out an ridiculous America accent. I just couldnt take it seriously.
This book was filled with excellent research and in depth explanations of states and individual actors involved in the arms trade. The layout of the book was good starting with corporations and then working towards individual leaders and arms dealers. There are some digs at personal character that are a bit unfounded or unnecessary, but nothing like say in a similar tell all, The Way of the Knife.
Personally, I prefer a British narrarator, but I was not a fan of the attempted American or Texan accents specifically.
Some interesting information here, but it failed to engage me as much as some other things have. Not sure what the problem was.
Well done performance, but very biased against conservatives. What should be a interesting retelling of history is infused with a few too many personal opinions about conservative politicians. Unfortunately this clouds the issues and tends to highlight the authors bias. The book would be very good if it was a non-political history of the weapons trade.
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