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War in the Middle East: A Reporter's Story: Black September and the Yom Kippur War

Overview

"Immediate and accessible. . . .The best volume yet for readers wanting to learn about this region that affects the whole world." — KIRKUS REVIEWS (starred review)

In 1970, when the Jordanian civil war known as Black September began, U.P.I. correspondent Wilborn Hampton was sent to report on unfolding events. Holed up in the InterContinental Hotel and caught in the crossfire, he managed to get the story out. Three years later, dispatched to Israel to cover the Yom Kippur War, ...

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Overview

"Immediate and accessible. . . .The best volume yet for readers wanting to learn about this region that affects the whole world." — KIRKUS REVIEWS (starred review)

In 1970, when the Jordanian civil war known as Black September began, U.P.I. correspondent Wilborn Hampton was sent to report on unfolding events. Holed up in the InterContinental Hotel and caught in the crossfire, he managed to get the story out. Three years later, dispatched to Israel to cover the Yom Kippur War, the reporter took it on himself to drive to the front lines. Now the acclaimed author of KENNEDY ASSASSINATED!, MELTDOWN, and SEPTEMBER 11, 2001, relays his on-the-spot experiences covering two pivotal wars, while offering readers a clear, balanced overview of the issues that have plagued the Middle East for decades and continue to this day.

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Kim Zach
The author, a veteran journalist, offers a fascinating account of his stint reporting from the Middle East in the early 1970s during two major conflicts known as Black September and the Yom Kippur War. The introduction explains the origins of what is largely a religious and territorial dispute. The final chapter sums up the aftermath of that period and its effects on the political situation over the next thirty years. In between, the author's personal story reads almost like a novel, rich in details of setting, characters, and events. It is an insider's view of life in a war zone and the dangers faced by foreign correspondents. Hampton describes trying to write stories from inside a hotel with no electricity or water as fighting waged all around. Out in the field, he witnessed dogfights, tank skirmishes, and executions, hitching rides with reluctant taxi drivers and soldiers to get to the action. Interestingly the journalist relied on telex and telephone to file his reports, a stark contrast to today's twenty-four-hour-news feed via Internet and cell-phone technology. Included are many black-and-white photos of battle scenes and key figures such as Anwar Sadat, Golda Meier, Yasir Arafat, and Bill Clinton, but the text would be just as compelling without them. As the Gaza Strip, suicide bombers, and Hamas continue to dominate the headlines, this book is an excellent resource for anyone who wants to understand more clearly the turmoil that shows no signs of ending anytime soon.
VOYA - Jamie S. Hansen
The twenty-first century inherited the tragedy of the Middle East conflict from the twentieth. War in this region dominates much of modern history and politics. Journalist Hampton offers a vivid, balanced account of the origins of the religious and territorial strife in the Middle East. As a reporter for United Press International (UPI), Hampton spent five years covering the Middle Eastern conflicts. In September 1970, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a militant wing of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), hijacked three airplanes, prompting a Jordanian civil war known as Black September. Hampton was there, filing news stories from a besieged hotel. Three years later, he returned to the region's front lines to cover the Yom Kippur War, Israel's retaliation against Egyptian and Syrian attacks along the Suez Canal and the Golan Heights. His firsthand account of the struggles to communicate news stories from a war zone, the hazards of traveling to the front to obtain interviews with troops in the field, and the privations of daily life under siege provides readers with an example of the best kind of journalism. Although Hampton uses his own years of frontline experience to lend immediacy to his narrative, he never allows his own story to overshadow the complicated and conflicting historical issues. His book's crystalline prose and evenhanded treatment of the convoluted history of the Middle East make it an essential addition to libraries and media centers. Reviewer: Jamie S. Hansen
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763643768
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 9/8/2009
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 677,497
  • Age range: 10 years
  • Lexile: 1120L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.66 (w) x 8.87 (h) x 0.31 (d)

Meet the Author

Wilborn Hampton is the author of KENNEDY ASSASSINATED!, MELTDOWN, and SEPTEMBER 11, 2001. He began working as a reporter at U.P.I. in 1963 and has more recently worked as an editor and critic at the NEW YORK TIMES. He lives in New York.

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