The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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 BlogviewPatrick Cockburn Archive
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A Diary of Four Wars
The four wars fought in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria over the past 12 years have all involved overt or covert foreign intervention in deeply divided countries. In each case the involvement of the West exacerbated existing differences and pushed hostile parties towards civil war. In each country, all or part of the opposition have... Read More
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A War No One is Winning
For the first two years of the Syrian civil war foreign leaders regularly predicted that Bashar al-Assad’s government would fall any day. In November 2011, King Abdullah of Jordan said that the chances of Assad’s surviving were so slim he ought to step down. In December last year, Anders Rasmussen, the Nato secretary general, said:... Read More
Full Story of the Taliban's Amazing Jailbreak
It was one of the great prison escapes in history in terms of the ingenuity and perseverance of those involved. It happened at 10pm on April 25 this year in southern Afghanistan when, after five months tunnelling, Taliban diggers finally broke through the concrete floor of a cell in the centre of Sarposa prison on... Read More
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"Failed State" Myths
Why has Lebanon ended up as the graveyard of so many invaders? Israelis used to say in the 1960s that one of their military bands would be enough to conquer the country. Sometimes, prior to Israel and Egypt agreeing a peace in 1979, they would add archly that “I don’t know which will be the... Read More
"They Can't Even Protect Themselves, So What Can They Do For Me?"
When President Hamid Karzai drove to Kabul airport to fly to America earlier this week, the centre of the Afghan capital was closed down by well-armed security men, soldiers and policemen. On his arrival in Washington he will begin two days of meetings, starting today, with President Barack Obama and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari... Read More
"All Hell is Breaking Loose with Muqtada" Warlord: the Rise of Muqtada al-Sadr
In early March 2004, I went to visit the office of al-Hawza, Muqtada al-Sadr's newspaper in Baghdad. There were only a few staff there, but they were relaxed and friendly. I talked to a young man called Hussein who was a student in the French department at Mustansiriyah University on Palestine Street near Sadr City,... Read More
Bloodbath Beyond the Green Zone
Arbil, Iraq. The gap between Iraq of the Green Zone and Iraq as it really is grows ever wider. On 20 May, five months after the election of parliament, Iraqis were told they had a new government boasting a minister for tourism but, despite the war raging across the country, no ministers of interior or... Read More
Patrick Cockburn
About Patrick Cockburn

Patrick Cockburn is the Middle East correspondent for the British newspaper The Independent. He was awarded the 2005 Martha Gellhorn prize for war reporting. His book on his years covering the war in Iraq, The Occupation: War and Resistance in Iraq (Verso) was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for non-fiction.


Personal Classics
Full Story of the Taliban's Amazing Jailbreak
"They Can't Even Protect Themselves, So What Can They Do For Me?"
"All Hell is Breaking Loose with Muqtada" Warlord: the Rise of Muqtada al-Sadr