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Murder in Samarkand

UK Publisher: Mainstream

Craig Murray was the United Kingdom’s Ambassador to Uzbekistan until he was removed from his post in October 2004 after exposing appalling human rights abuses by the US-funded regime of President Islam Karimov. In this candid and at times shocking memoir, he lays bare the dark and dirty underside of the War on Terror. In Uzbekistan, the land of Alexander the Great and Tamburlaine, lurks one of the most hideous tyrannies on earth – one founded on cotton slavery and brutal torture. As neighbouring ‘liberated’ Afghanistan produces record levels of heroin, the Uzbek rulers cash in on massive trafficking. They are even involved in trafficking their own women to prostitution in the West. But this did not prevent Karimov being viewed as a key US ally in the War on Terror. When Craig Murray arrived in Uzbekistan, he was a young Ambassador with a brilliant career and a taste for whisky and women. But after hearing accounts of dissident prisoners being boiled to death and innocent people being raped and murdered by agents of the state, he started to question both his role and that of his country in so-called ‘democratising’ states. When Murray decided to go public with his shocking findings, Washington and 10 Downing Street reached the conclusion that he had to go. But Uzbekistan had changed the high-living diplomat and there was no way he was going to go quietly.

“I thought that diplomats like Craig Murray were an extinct breed. A man of the highest principle”
-John Pilger

“An important and well-told story from a frontline on the war of terror”
-The Spectator

“The Uzbek people know only one word for Craig Murray: hero”
-Mohammad Salih, Uzbek opposition leader

“Heroic. This darkly comic tale…rings horribly true. It helps explain the moral bankruptcy [of] the Blair government”
-Sir Max Hastings, Sunday Times, 16 July 2006

“The book is fantastic. It is very, very funny…It also deals with the fact that the reason he is no longer ambassador is that the British Government was using information obtained from torture and he thought that was wrong”
-Michael Winterbottom, Director

“This candid account…looks set to ruffle a few feathers”

“The actions of this brave and principled man have certainly exposed the ‘war on terror’ for the sick charade that it is”
-Morning Star

-Sunday Express