The Way of the World by Ron Suskind

11 03 2010

WayOfTheWorld The Way of the World: A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism by Pulitzer price winning and bestselling author Ron Suskind is a very interesting and captivating book that covers topics that might seem dry and uninteresting to most people but the author manages to bring the story to life.  The book tells the stories of a few individuals: a Pakistani emigrant, Afghani exchange student, UN refugee commissioner, a CIA officer and Benazir Bhutto, the former prime minister of Pakistan,  in the post 9/11 era of Bush’s War On Terror.

The individual stories all circle around three main topics, namely the Iraqi war and Iraq’s alleged possession of weapons of mass destruction, the fight against terrorism in Afghanistan and Pakistan and thirdly the danger of terrorists acquiring and using weapons of mass destruction, mainly nuclear weapons.

The authors main message is that America has has lost its way in international politics and how the nation is perceived abroad.  Once it used to be a country that all others admired and deep down everyone wanted to live the American values of freedom, honesty, integrity, truth and justice for all.  But over the years, the author argues, America has strayed away from those values, both domestically and abroad.  This is the main reason America finds it self in the middle of an unwinnable war – the war on terror.

The way out of the mess America finds it in, according to the author, is to get back on that moral high ground and start living its own values that built America and made the country what it is.

I listened to the book in a audio book format and it was wonderfully read by Alan Sklar.  The book was interesting and very captivating all the way to the end.  The topics discussed in the book are not topics that I’m particularly interested in but never the less the book was very interesting and informative.  I can’t say whether all the author’s sources are good ones but after listening to the book I have to agree with the author’s main conclusion that America will be far better off if as a country it goes back to living the values of honesty, freedom, integrity, truth and justice for all – all the time, not just when convenient.

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