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Beyond Bogota


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About the Author

Garry Leechis an independent journalist and editor ofColombia Journal. For the past eight years his work has primarily focused on the US war on drugs and Colombia's civil conflict. He is the author of several books including Beyond Bogota- Diary of a Drug War Journalist in Colombia, Crude Interventions- The United States, Oil and the New World (Dis)Order, Capitalism- A Structural Genocide and How I Became an American Socialist. Find him online at


In this arresting hybrid of journalism and memoir Leech relates his experiences investigating political, economic, and drug-related stories throughout Latin America. The narrative is organized into 11 chapters, which parallel the 11 hours Leech was detained by the FARC, a Colombian guerrilla group, in 2006. Each chapter begins with details of Leech's captivity, which serve as introductions to broader stories, including the civil unrest and massacres in 1980s El Salvador; his meetings with government officials and paramilitary and guerrilla groups vying for power in Panama, Colombia, and other nearby countries; and the wavering effectiveness of the U.S. war on drugs. Along the way, Leech highlights the rampant human-rights violations in the region, the fumigation of cocaine plants, which also destroys other crops, and the large displaced civilian populations often caught in the cross fire. This enlightening book, which mixes a readable level of detail and background with personal narrative, should be in every library, public and academic.--Sarah Statz Cords, Reader's Advisor Online Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Eye-opening . . . excellent reportage--highly recommended for would-be journalists as well as those interested in geopolitics.--Kirkus Reviews

"In this remarkable saga, Garry Leech conveys brilliantly and with vivid insight the magical qualities of this rich and tortured land, and the struggles and torment of its people."--Noam Chomsky "That havoc within Colombia is portrayed with angry passion by the determined Garry Leech, that now rare beast in the jungle of journalism prepared to put his own life at the service of the truth. . . . A remarkable and captivating personal account of the drug war that unfolds mostly in Colombia.--Gavin O'Toole, Latin American Review of Books

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