The Foreigner's Gift: The Americans, the Arabs, and the Iraqis in Iraq

by Fouad Ajami

Book cover for The Foreigner's Gift: The Americans, the Arabs, and the Iraqis in Iraq

Fouad Ajami, one of the world¹s foremost authorities on Middle Eastern politics and the recipient of the 2006 Bradley Prize for Outstanding Achievement and the National Humanities Medal of 2006, offers a brilliant, illuminating, and lyrical portrait of the ongoing struggle for Iraq and of the American encounter with that volatile Arab land. In a new introduction, the author discusses the many major events that have taken place since the publication of the hardcover, including the implications of Saddam¹s execution, the Baker-Hamilton Commission, and the return to Iraq of General David Petraeus. He renders unsparingly the growing American disillusionment with the war and the struggle within Iraq between those keen to hold on to the promise of the new country called up by America¹s war and others determined to thwart that promise and overwhelm it with sectarian strife. Ajami situates the current unrest within the context of Iraq¹s recent history of dictatorship and its rich, diverse cultural heritage. He applies his incisive political commentary, his broad and deep historical view, his mastery of the Arabic language and Arabic sources, and his lustrous prose to every aspect of his subject, wresting a coherent, fascinating, and textured picture from the media storm of fragmented information. The Foreigner¹s Gift is the book we all need to read in order to understand what is happening in Iraq today and what the future might hold for all of us.

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