A fascinating travelogue and political expose of the scarred country of Zimbabwe. With a new postscript for the paperback edition.
Zimbabwe is a country both blessed and cursed. British diplomat Philip Barclay witnessed the downfall of what used to be Africa's finest country, culminating in the tumultuous events of 2008 when Zimbabwe's people voted against Robert Mugabe. But their desire for change was denied as vicious squads of indoctrinated youths loyal to the ageing dictator launched a campaign of murder, rape and destruction. In the wake of such terror, the economy and public services collapsed, leading to widespread poverty and epidemics of diseases that Zimbabwe had not seen in living memory.
This electrifying account records the violent excesses of a hated clique prepared to do anything to cling to power. It is also a personal story of the extraordinary resilience of Zimbabwe's people.
'Barclay's book is chilling and heartbreaking. He is as far from the diplomat of the 'old school' as can be imagined. As a man, and a writer, he is engaged and brave' Fergal Keane
'This beautifully written history meticulously exposes, and in good time too, precisely from what and from who Zimbabwe's voters will need protection before and during any future election' Independent
'Barclay writes a shimmering and virtuoso foreign correspondent prose' Guardian
'An excellent guide to this awful period of Zimbabwe's sad decline' Financial Times
Philip Barclay is a British diplomat who has been living in Zimbabwe since 2007. He has written several articles, under a pseudonym, about Zimbabwe for the Sunday Times and the Guardian. He has also written an acclaimed blog, which attracted significant attention in the UK and US. Zimbabwe is Philip Barclay's first book.