It’s been a while since I posted a book review here. It’s not that I did not start reading one, but it took time to finish the one I picked. I had chosen a humongous book named “A promised land” by Barack Obama. Its 800 pages of written content as a hardcover or 29 hours as an audible audiobook requires real dedication from you. For me, it took my reading schedule the entire March to finish!
Naturally, the first thought came to my mind when I heard the title the God’s promise on the land to Abraham and his decedents. Although Obama covers the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in a chapter, the book is not about that promised land in the middle east.
Anyways, my verdict is – this is a must-read and an excellent addition to your personal library. Despite its length, it does not warrant laborious reading; it literally reads on its own – very beautifully written and well narrated. You will like it depending on how much you are interested in world politics and economics. Additionally, if you are a democrat, you might get goosebumps going through few specific chapters. It’s an understatement if I say Obama is a fantastic orator. He will never let get you bored while you are at it.
I personally loved it and would reread it sometime in future.
The book covers Obama’s political career leading up to the mid-term election. I believe the subsequent topics will be covered in his next book. That is the reason you would not hear him talk about Modi, but you would about Manmohan, Sonia and Rahul.
Also, the book covers his political and economic part of his precedency rather than his personal life. Michelle, Melia, and Sasha appear very infrequently, just about a few paragraphs, not more than he was absolutely obligated to write. Or perhaps he wanted us to buy Michelle’s book to learn the other side of the story. I am not falling for that – that’s another 19 hours right there. Even though the first couple of chapters cover his childhood leading up to his political career, it seems it was inserted for the benefit of one Donald Trump, who had challenged Obama’s birth origin and Americanness.
Overall, the content takes a frank tone, superbly detailed (29 hours, duh!!), leading you to wonder how he could remember all these details with such vivid description.
Anyways, these are the chapter resonated well with me.
- The visits to the middle east and their ever-complicated politics. Obama calls a spade a spade without having an obligation to ignore the elephant in the room.
- Fascinating topic on Nuclear disarmament and Iran.
- The climate bill and carbon cuts and how he blackmailed BRIC leaders into Paris agreement (A little American hypocrisy here)
- The Greek Euro crisis
- BP deep-sea oil leak crisis
- The Birth-er debate and how he handled the Donald trump campaign against him.
- The middle eastern conflict – Libya, Tunisia, and Egypt etc.
There are several topics were failed to convince me.
- How picking up a fight across the world may be wrong, including bombing them.
- What a liberal democratic support to the repressive regime, including the autocracies, is still OK.
- How Hilary is correct, and Palin is an idiot.
- Subprime crises and his defiance on bailing out the Banks and why no banks have been brought to justice.
The books end with a very well narrated story on the manhunt of Osama bin Laden. Probably, Obama considered this as the singularly most significant important achievement of his career as president, hence, all the emphasis on the almost-fiction-like chapter.
I will be waiting for the next book and work love to hear from the horse’s mouth on:
- Obama care – his view on socializing the medicine.
- Trump – election and transition
- Modi wave in India
- China & the tariff war
- Diminishing free speech in American University campuses
- Charlie Hebdo – maybe?
- Raise of Antifa and PC culture.
Let’s see. Meanwhile, please go buy this book, and it is worth every penny.
There was a burnt-palm situation back in 90s, where Babri Mosque was demolished for the intention of building a Temple. Indian government was so confused, that it left both the communities to fight each other! Fight was settled with few holy massacres. Decision on that ground zero, I believe, still in supreme court. Till now it is not neither “politically correct” nor “supporting freedom of religion” to build a temple at the same spot, even if liberals ask.
So, Obama administration and NY mayor’s office probably can take a few advices from their Indian counterparts on handling “ground zero” situation. just a thought.
Anyway, my opinion is : Don’t build any places of worship, anywhere, any more. We have plenty of them already.
On the same topic , I found these; worth sharing. Thanks to Ape not monkey for all three cartoon strips.
There is this site, which can calculate what does the internet think on anything you wish. To start with I keyed in the same keywords any curious Indian would do, “India” and “Pakistan”.
Nothing conclusive , but good to see the results this way. On the same lines, there is one “bicycle repairman” joke on relevant to this. Here it is if you haven’t heard of it, enjoy:
Manmohan Singh and Barack Obama are sitting at a pub sipping bear. A Journalist who walks in and sees these guys and the conversation :
J: What on the earth you guys dicussing in a pub?
BO: We’re planning World War III.
J : Really? What’s your plan ?
MS: We’re going to kill 15 million Pakistanis and one bicycle repairman
J: A bicycle repairman!?!
Manmohan turns to Obama and says: “See, I told you no one would worry about the 15 million Pakistanis!”