27 February 2017

Review: Bringing Down Gaddafi by Andrei Netto

Hardcover, 302 pages
Published 2014 (originally 2012)

Acquired June 2014
Read February 2017
Bringing Down Gaddafi: On the Ground with the Libyan Rebels
by Andrei Netto

I now know more about the Libyan Civil War of 2011 than I did before, which is good, but I don't think Netto told his story as well as he might have. (Though, of course it could always be the fault of his translator.) Netto spent some time with Libyan revolutionary forces during the Arab Spring, and his firsthand experience is valuable, but sometimes I felt like I was drowning in dull details. Periodically, though, a striking event or image manages to break through the monotony: the actual death of Gaddafi, Netto's own time in a Libyan prison (and the events leading up to it), time spent in an overwhelmed hospital after the revolution (the description of how the hospital's pool changed color as people started to bathe in it will stick with me), the discovery that Gaddafi's daughter (supposedly killed in American airstrikes in the 1980s) was alive and well and working as a doctor. A lot of interesting tidbits, but not as interesting an overall package as I'd hoped.

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