9 августа 2009 | Автор: Admin | Рубрика: Художественные книги » Мемуары. Биографии | Комментариев: 0
Steve Coll, "The Bin Ladens"
Penguin | 2008 | ISBN: 1846141249 | 688 pages | DjVy | 10,3 MB
When one thinks of Bin Laden, of course, one thinks of Osama, Al Qaeda, and 9-11. However, this book looks at a fascinating family history, with Osama Bin Laden as only one small part of the larger familial tapestry. A genealogy at the front of the book helps to identify the family's background, from Ali (circa 1820) to Aboud, to Awadh (born around 1875) to Mohamed (born around 1905) and Abdullah, brothers who came to bring the family wealth and recognition. Finally, the 54 children of Mohamed Bin Laden, born in the time frame from the mid-1940s through 1967.
Mohamed and his brother grew up in Yemen, in poor circumstances. They suffered bad luck. Finally, they moved to Saudi Arabia and began to become more successful. Mohamed, especially, was the brother with more drive, and the story of the family takes off with the depiction of his worming his way into the royal family's graces by his hard work and willingness to do as he was bid. A "rags to riches" story. . . . The family Saud is, obviously, the central power in a country bearing the family's name (how often does that happen!?).
And that family's history is intertwined with Mohamed's family. This part of the story begins with Abdulaziz Ibn Saud. After working his way upward, Mohamed had the good fortune of beginning to do projects for the royal family. What he did not know about construction, he learned or he hired people who did know what to do. Over time, he became the "go to" person for construction (whether for palaces, or roads, or. . . .) in Saudi Arabia. The quality of his work was sometimes open to question, but his willingness to do whatever the royal family wanted served him well. But enough of a simple chronology.
The book looks at the evolving views of the royal family and the development of Bin Laden's "empire." The story is also filled with tragedy--both Mohamed and perhaps his most promising son, Salem, were killed in air crashes. Osama moved on to a very different life, which is discussed pretty well here. From American support for his work against the Soviet Union to enemy of the United States. . . . An interesting tale here.
Anyway, for readers interested in the Bin Laden family, this represents a very solid piece of work. Research seems done well. Many readers will doubtless come away from this book with a different view of our Saudi "friends."
Enjoy this great book! Brought to you by SMIRK