Book Reviews

A Banned Book and Samizdat Press

In the old Soviet Bloc, various dissidents would evade the official government censors through what became known as the Samizdat Press. Those who had received forbidden literature (usually poetry, essays and novels deemed dangerous by the authorities) would “self-publish” copies of what they had and clandestinely distribute them. Today, we have scanners and the internet. Given the various lush Saudi funding sources available to shut down and intimidate those who write and speak about the Jihad movement, it seems time for a return to the tradition of Samizdat.

Alms for Jihad by J. Millard Burr and Robert O. Collins has been pulled by its publisher (Cambridge University Press) following the 35th major libel action against writers on the Jihad and Wahhabis in British courts by a Saudi Billionaire. It wasn’t that the book was inaccurate, but that the plaintiff had deep enough pockets to seriously threaten the publishers. Anyway, somebody or other managed to secure a copy as the recall order went out and — now that the publishers have abrogated their sacred duty of releasing this vital study to the public — has made sure that electronic copies are in circulation… not that we know anything about this, okay?

If we had read the book (and of course, we haven’t); we might observe that it seemed to be a superbly researched and very accurate comprehensive study of the web of ‘charities’ set up by Saudi Wahhabis to support al Qaeda and the Jihad. Of course, we haven’t read the book and wouldn’t know enough to imagine where it might be found in electronic format. Nosirree, don’t know nothin’ about it….

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