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The Gospel of Rutba
War, Peace, and the Good Samaritan Story in Iraq
by Greg Barrett
Publisher:Orbis Books from Alban Books
Published:31 March 2013
This book describes an event which took place shortly after America initiated a war in 2003 against Saddam Hussein's regime. It has three distinct, although related, strands which the author skilfully weaves together. The first one explains the title, wich literally means "Good news from Rutba". This is a heart-warming account of kindness received from an unexpected source - the presumed enemy. The second tells us something of the people in the story: three American peace-activists involved in a life-threatening accident outside the small Iraqi town of Rutba, and the passers-by, ambulance drivers, doctors and nurses who rescued them and cared for them within the limited resources at their disposal after their hospital had been destroyed by American bombs. The third strand is a powerful indictment of the Bush administration's "shock and awe" attack on a sovereign nation with its attendant suffering, death and destruction. The author concludes on a happier note with a description of the return visit to Rutba by the peace-activists in 2010 to give thanks once again to their rescuers.
Reviewer: Alexandra Irvine (26/02/13)