Friday, May 18, 2007

Blood Diamonds: Tracing the Path of the World's Most Precious Stones

Author: Greg Campbell

First line: Ismael Dalramy lost his hands in 1996 with two quick blows of an ax.

Why you should read this book: The devastation of civil war in West Africa, corruption, starvation, terror, kidnapping, mutilation, and bloodshed, is monumental globally, yet long ignored by the outside world. Campbell's odyssey into the heart of Sierra Leone's anarchy, executed by disenfranchised children with machine guns and funded by conflict diamonds, carries the story of financial greed to its logical conclusion. The history of DeBeers, the machinations of military coups, and the connection between Osama Bin Laden and hijacked diamond wealth come together in an exciting and detailed account of the wormy roots and gnarled branches of the diamond industry.

Why you shouldn't read this book: You're sitting on a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and you've already heard the entire story firsthand.

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