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Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2008

Waiting for an Ordinary Day: The Unraveling of Life in Iraq

(PublicAffairs), by Farnaz Fassihi

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   In 2004 The Wall Street Journal's Farnaz Fassihi sent an e-mail to friends and family in the States that went 'round the world, a description of just how bad life had gotten in Iraq under the U.S. occupation. The situation may have improved since then, at least provisionally and in degrees, but Waiting for an Ordinary Day stands as a collection of empathetic reports from Baghdad in the months before the U.S. invasion through Fassihi's departure from the country in 2006. Fassihi's cultural familiarity with the Near East gained her admission to places most Americans would never see, providing a sobering picture of a society that collapsed after its tyrant was toppled by foreigners led by men whose ignorance was exceeded only by their arrogance.

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