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Fire From the Sky: What Not to Read This Month

Among the Dead Cities by A. C. Grayling

Reviewed by Benjamin Schwarz
The Atlantic Monthly

"This book will vex and outrage many readers (as it did when it was first published in Britain earlier this year), for many wrong reasons and for a few right ones. Its author is one of those U.K. academics who has achieved something like celebrity: he writes regularly for the fancy British newspapers and magazines, and his books are best sellers. Most of the current crop of 'teledons' are historians, but Grayling is a philosopher, and he believes that his field 'should take an active, useful role in society,' which makes him something of a busybody, as he applies philosophical and ethical precepts to the muck of the Real World." Read the entire The Atlantic Monthly review.

One Response to "Fire From the Sky: What Not to Read This Month"

    T.G. Decker January 28th, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    Hello Ben,
    Interesting assessment, historically accurate, however; I believe you err on his success.

    The book never makes any formal conclusions but allows deep thought(s) on; personal hatreds, fears and horrors.
    Seems to me that is what Tony tries to do. Like it or hate it he forces you to check your moral compass.

    Personal Note(s):
    I did greatly appreciate your notation of Harris' 2nd in Command - Any confirmed name to the unknown soldier? That summarized the error(s) of Tonys arguments decisively.
    As per your personal comment about philosophers compared to military leaders...I reluctantly agree...(yet meow)
    Maybe if philosophers had more say in war it would be less bloody...but alas; most philosophers believe the pen is mightier than the sword...means little when you put your loved ones in the ground.

    As for me...
    Who cares of the forgotten righteous future when you hold your dead child?
    WWII was a must win anyway possible; as ugly as it was I am thankful of the outcome and enjoy reaping the rewards of our victorious heritage.

    Lest we forget.

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