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The Devil You Don’t Know

The Devil You Don’t Know

Going Back to Iraq

Translated by John West


9780863566493 April 2009 Paperback 288pp

About the Book

In 1979, journalist Zuhair al-Jezairy fled Iraq and certain death after openly criticising Saddam’s regime. Twenty-five years later he is back, and cautiously celebrating the toppling of the hated Ba’ath Party.

As editor of a newspaper, he breaks the Oil for Food scandal, disclosing the names of Arab and Westerners who were involved. He then sets up a television company and travels all over Iraq, documenting the country’s descent into sectarianism and hopeless violence, soon becoming a target himself.

Al-Jezairy’s first-hand accounts of the looting of Baghdad, the destruction of government buildings, and indiscriminate bombings are a searing, personal and unique account of Iraq after Saddam Hussein.

About the Author

Zuhair al-Jezairy lives in Iraq, where he manages the country’s first independent news agency, Voice of Iraq. He has published nine books, including two novels, in Arabic.

About the Translator

John West is a journalist and a graduate of Classics from Balliol College, Oxford. He has covered three wars in the Middle East as a correspondent for Reuters.


'What really comes through and is startingly refreshing are al-Jezairy's encounters with ordinary Iraqis. Through them come all the extraordinary stories that have been so hard for Westerners to capture all these years ... Vital and new.'
Rageh Omaar

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