Tariq Ali on Hugo Chavez, the Axis Of Hope and His New Book ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ – Democracy Now

Tariq Ali interviewed about Hugo Chavez, the Axis Of Hope and his new book Pirates of the Caribbean for Democracy Now!, October 10, 2007

watch the interview

From the archive

  • ‘Defending the faith’ – The Guardian reviews A Sultan in Palermo

    July 30, 2005

    A Sultan in Palermo reviewed by Kamila Shamsie for The Guardian, July 30, 2005

    Kamila Shamsie is enchanted by Tariq Ali’s A Sultan in Palermo, a vivid, relevant and necessary tale of Islamic history

    In A Sultan in Palermo, the fourth novel in Tariq Ali’s Islam Quintet, the 12th-century geographer al-Idrisi thinks back on his first encounter with the works of the Greek al-Homa (Homer). Al-Idrisi had been told by his father of the 12 calligraphers who transcribed Arabic translations of al-Homa’s poetry, working under conditions of such secrecy that if they were even to reveal the nature of their work, “the executioner’s scimitar, in a lightning flash, would detach head from body”. But one of the calligraphers, undaunted, copied out parts of both al-Homa’s poems and sent them to his family  …

  • ‘Elephantine Corruption’

    December 3, 2010

    ‘Elephantine Corruption’ by Tariq Ali for the London Review of Books Blog, December 3, 2010

    The Wikileaks confirm what we already know about Af-Pak. Pakistan is a US satrapy: its military and political leaders constitute a venal elite happy to kill and maim its people at the behest of a foreign power. The US proconsul in Islamabad, Anne Patterson, emerges as a shrewd diplomat, repeatedly warning her country of the consequences in Pakistan if they carry on as before. Amusing but hardly a surprise is Zardari reassuring the US that if he were assassinated his sister, Faryal Talpur, would replace him and all would continue as before. Always nice to know that the country is regarded by its ruler as a personal fiefdom.

    Then we have the country’s military boss, General Kayani, sweetly suggesting that the Pushtun leader  …

  • ‘Ahmed Rashid’s War’

    October 9, 2009

    ‘Ahmed Rashid’s War’ by Tariq Ali for Counterpunch, October 9, 2009

    After breakfast, I read Gideon Rachman’s often revealing blog on the Financial Times website. Today there was some very good news. Ahmed Rashid, a leading adviser to the US hawks on Afghanistan, is depressed. Deconstructing Rachman on this occasion might be useful for CounterPunch readers:

    “…Jon Snow of Channel 4 News, allowed me to gatecrash a breakfast he was having with Ahmed Rashid. In theory, Ahmed is just a journalist like us. But his views on Afghanistan and Pakistan are now so widely sought that he has really become a player. He seems to be consulted by everybody – and I mean, everybody.”

    This last is a slight exaggeration. The main people who consult Rashid, apart from Robert Silvers at the New York Review of Books, are  …