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Patrick Cockburn

Patrick Cockburn is currently Middle East correspondent for the Independent and worked previously for the Financial Times. He has written three books on Iraq’s recent history, including The Occupation and Saddam Hussein: An American Obsession (with Andrew Cockburn) as well as a memoir, The Broken Boy and, with his son, a book on schizophrenia, Henry’s Demons, which was shortlisted for a Costa Award. He won the Martha Gellhorn Prize in 2005, the James Cameron Prize in 2006, and the Orwell Prize for Journalism in 2009. Winner of the Foreign Affairs Journalist of the Year Award 2014.

Blog

  • After Chilcot: A Reading List on Iraq and the “War on Terror”

    “We have concluded that the UK chose to join the invasion of Iraq before the peaceful options for disarmament had been exhausted. Military action at that time was not a last resort.” — John Chilcot.

    The long-awaited Chilcot Report, spanning almost a decade of UK government policy decisions between 2001 and 2009, was released today. The report finds that there was no “imminent threat” from Saddam Hussein, and that Tony Blair had gone to war before “peaceful options for disarmament” had been exhausted — the UK's invasion of Iraq in 2003 was not a “last resort”.

    Verso presents a reading list of books that contextualize the disaster resulting from the "War on Terror" and the refugee crisis rooted in its violence. After the invasion by coalition forces in 2003, Iraq began fracturing along sectarian lines, unleashing years of violence and displacement. With the outbreak of war in Syria in 2011, ISIS exploited the chaos and societal tensions of the region to sweep to power on a brutal campaign that has displaced millions of civilians. The Iraq War, too, led to increased risk of terrorism in Europe as well as within the Middle East. 


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  • The Arab Uprisings Five Years On: A Reading List

    Five years ago the Middle East and North Africa was electrified by unprecedented popular protests that heralded the start of the Arab Spring. Beginning in Tunisia popular movements swept regimes from power in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya and threatened to overthrow ruling elites across the region. Tragically, the Arab Spring has since become mired in counterrevolution and civil war with the extraordinary violence of the war in Syria, the rise of ISIS, the escalating refugee crisis, and the establishment of a new dictatorship in Egypt emblematic of the profound challenges facing the people of the region. As tumultuous events continue to unfold we present Verso's reading list of key titles addressing the developing situation in the Middle East.


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  • Arun Kundnani analyzes last night's GOP Debate on Democracy Now!



    This morning on Democracy Now!, Arun Kundnani responded to last night's warmongering, Islamophobic GOP Debate. The debate, which took place at GOP mega-donor and billionaire Sheldon Adelson’s casino in Las Vegas, was the first forum for the Republican candidates since Donald Trump proposed banning all Muslims from entering the United States. There are no meaningful variations between the nine Republican candidates, Kundnani explained: "The variations between them are the different ways in which we might abuse people’s rights and go to war."

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