Situated hundreds of miles from any other settlement, deep within the inhospitable desert of Northern Kenya, Dadaab is a city like no other. Its buildings are made from mud, sticks, or plastic; its entire economy is gray; and its citizens survive on rations and luck. Over the course of four years, Ben Rawlence became a firsthand witness to a strange and desperate limbo-land, getting to know many of those who have come there seeking sanctuary.
"Compelling but dry"
To the charity workers, Dadaab refugee camp is a humanitarian crisis; to the Kenyan government, it is a 'nursery for terrorists'; to the Western media, it is a dangerous no-go area; but to its half a million residents, it is their last resort. Situated hundreds of miles from any other settlement, in the midst of the inhospitable desert of Northern Kenya where only thorn bushes grow, Dadaab is a city like no other.