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Dirty Diplomacy Hardcover – 16 Oct 2007
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"A fearless book by a fearless man. Craig Murray tells the truth whether the 'authorities' like it or not. I salute a man of integrity." -- Harold Pinter
"I enjoyed reading it, between shudders...It really is a remarkable achievement." -- Noam Chomsky
"This book is fantastic...[like] a very funny version of a Graham Greene novel." -- Michael Winterbottom
"The Uzbek people know only one word for Craig Murray: hero." -- Mohammad Salih, Uzbek opposition leader --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
CRAIG MURRAY was British ambassador at the embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, from 2002 to 2005, having previously served as a diplomat in Africa and Eastern Europe. He is rector of the University of Dundee and an honorary research fellow at the University of Lancaster School of Law. He lives in London with his partner, Nadira. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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His subsequent attempt to stand up against a regime that enjoyed boiling people alive, executing real or perceived enemies of the state in extra-judicial killings, etc. subsequently got Mr. Murray into trouble with the Blair administration since he was stirring the pot with one of their erstwhile allies in the "War on Terror". However, as Mr. Murray so eloquently lays out, it is precisely this type of tyrannical regime that leads to the rise of fundamentalist, extremist groups in the first place.
Mr. Murray went to extraordinary lengths to represent British interests in Uzbekistan and traveled the whole nation to get to know it better. Along the way, he tried his best to encourage Democracy and Rule of Law, a novelty in Uzbekistan. Some of his more dangerous and coloful confrontations included standing up to various local government officials, thugs, etc. and are recounted in gripping detail. It is evident that Mr. Murray risked considerable harm to himself.
Like most other diplomats in Uzbekistan, Mr. Murray could have simply looked the other way, just as the British government instructed him to when he reported human rights abuses and other issues with the regime that the Blair and Bush administrations wanted to cozy up to. That is not to say that he is a knight in shining armor, but he seems to be pretty honest about his personal flaws.
When one of his internal Memos to the Foreign Office decrying the human rights abuses in Uzbekistan was leaked to the press, the British government took extraordinary steps to kick him out of the Foreign Service. With his departure, the British Foreign Service lost one of their more courageous and competent ambassadors, though perhaps he was a bit too honest and outspoken for the diplomatic club.
This book was originally published under the title "Murder in Samarkand" in Britain. This version names more names regarding the folk working behind the scenes to kick Mr. Murray out of the Foreign Service, thanks to US freedom of speech laws. The British paperback version has more pictures, however. It's a very interesting read, and I highly recommend it.