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Hit Man Turns Peaceful Warrior
on 30 January 2009
In this book, Perkins makes several contrary things hang together. He tries to give an eyewitness account of secret intrigues, but also a big picture of recent world history. He damns both the American establishment and himself, but then gets motivational for changing the powers that be.
At first the book reads almost like a spy novel. Perkins wants to convey the glamor of high finance conspiracies, with the posh hotels, the geisha girls, the jackels, and the mirror sunglasses. How else did a man of conscience get sucked into all this? But then he meets more and more local leaders from countries around the world, who tell him the real scoop on the effects of US "development" policy. These people often need to remain anonymous, which sometimes leaves Perkins to vouch for his own testimony. Still, the accounts build up to an overwhelming case, which checks with lots of things we all know.
Then Perkins tries his hand as a motivational writer for global change. And here he gets downright authentic. A lot of this section comes from rather spontaneous speeches, where he set out to talk from the heart without notes. His stories of activists influencing corporate policy are practical, inspiring, and challenging to all disengaged critics. By the time he's done, you wanta be on this guy's side.