Notes From the Margins…
Posts by Matt

Rami Zurayk’s War Diary

  • October 02, 2011
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I’ve just read Rami Zurayk’s magnificent War Diary: Lebanon 2006, a searing account of the 33-day Israel-Hizbullah war that began in July 2006, when Hizbullah carried out a cross-border raid in which 2 Israeli soldiers were kidnapped and 3 killed.

Determined to restore the ‘credibility of its military deterrent’,  Israel unleashed what later became known as...

Nazi Literature in the Americas

  • September 29, 2011
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Until recently I hadn’t really got on with Roberto Bolaño, the Chilean novelist and new ‘sacred monster’ of Latin American literature who died tragically young in the Catalan town of Blanes at the age of 50.   I wanted to like him, because I liked his politics, his Catalan connections and his take on...

Cometh the hour, cometh the Miliband

  • September 28, 2011
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Even by New Labour’s standards, yesterday’s speech by Ed Miliband has to be one of the lamest I have ever heard from a politician, let alone from the leader of a party that claims to represent the centre-left.   It was numbingly uninspiring and utterly transparent in its attempts to appeal to everyone and...

Tough Decisions

  • September 26, 2011
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It’s always bracing when politicians talk about the need for ‘tough decisions’, as though they’re struggling to repress some inherent sense of decency for the greater good.   Maybe less so with George Osborne. His toughness is the kind one might have expected from some dissolute rake from the Hellfire Club,  pausing to evict starving farm...

The British Army’s War Porn

The British Army’s War Porn

  • September 25, 2011
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There is a rather nauseating story in today’s  Independent on Sunday about British soldiers gathering to watch ‘war snuff movies’ at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan for ‘morale boosting’ sessions. These ‘Kill TV nights’ consisted of video clips showing people being killed by Apache helicopters, and were accompanied by a commentary from Warrant Officer Andy Farmer.

According...

Who Bombed Marrakesh?

Who Bombed Marrakesh?

  • September 23, 2011
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The plot thickens at the trial of the nine men accused of carrying out  the atrocious bombing of the Argana cafe in the Place Djama al Fna in Marrakesh last April, in which seventeen people were killed, including eight foreign tourists.  In court this week Adil-el Othmani, one of nine men accused of carrying out...

About Me

I’m a writer, campaigner and journalist.  My latest book is The Savage Frontier: The Pyrenees in History and the Imagination (New Press/Hurst, 2018).  The Infernal Machine is where I write on politics, history, cinema and other things that interest me.

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