Washington Bullets by Vijay Prashad
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
"This is the way of the camp of the coup. It wants to steal the soul of the people so as to reduce people into zombies who must bow their heads down and work, putting their precious labour towards the accumulation of capital for the tyrants of the economy."
Vijay Prashad's Washington Bullets is one of the most powerful bodies of work that I've read all year. This collection of essay-like chapters guides the reader across nations and throughout time, giving us a birds-eye view of the variety of methods that Washington has used to violently squash attempts at self-determination. Washington's decades-old imperialistic quest to acquire and control the resources of nations across the globe has left an endless stream of bodies in its wake - and most Americans are none the wiser.
Utilizing powerful and poetic prose, Prashad presents us with a bloody mosaic illustrating the truth behind Washington's crusade to bring "freedom" and "democracy" to "uncivilized" nations across the globe. In telling their stories, Prashad pays homage to the freedom fighters, to the indigenous and the marginalized peoples who have dared to resist the stranglehold of U.S. imperialism. This is a chilling and gripping narrative driven by the empathy of someone who dares to bear witness to struggle, who seeks to bring into the light the truths that have been purposefully obscured and pushed into darkness.
While this work will inevitably attract readers of particular political leanings, it is necessary reading for all - especially for Americans who still buy into the standard propagandistic good guy/bad guy narrative that is presented in schools and in the media. Though it isn't a very long book (around 150 pgs or so), the material might be dense and heavy for some. It may require reading bits and pieces at a time, even if only to take a moment to breathe and absorb it all.
However one decides to read this book, it is worth reading in its entirety. The information contained within these pages puts both history and current events into perspective, challenging informed and uninformed readers alike to center the oppressed in their view of international politics.
View all my reviews
Niv Mullings is a writer, poet, and plant-based health coach hailing from The Boogie Down Bronx.