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The diminutive co-founder of Code Pink has become famous for fearlessly tackling head-on subjects the left and right studiously avoid. Sometimes, she does so in person--as at President Obama's speech at the National Defense College, or in Egypt, where she was assaulted by police. Here, she's researching the sinister nature of the relationship between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia.
In seven succinct chapters followed by a meditation on prospects for change, Benjamin--cited by the L.A. Times as "one of the high profile members of the peace movement"--shines a light on one of the weirder, and most important, elements of our foreign policy. What is the origin of this strange alliance between two countries that have very little in common? Why does it persist, and what are its consequences? Why, over a period of decades and across various presidential administrations, has the United States consistently supported a regime shown time and again to be one of the most powerful forces working against American interests? Saudi Arabia is perhaps the single most important source of funds for terrorists worldwide, promoting an extreme interpretation of Islam along with anti-Western sentiment, while brutally repressing non-violent dissidents at home.
Medea Benjamin is one of America's best-known 21st century activists. Co-founder of Code Pink and the fair trade advocacy group Global Exchange, she is the author of Drone Warfare (OR Books and Verso) and has played an active role in the Green Party (most notably as their candidate for US Senate in California, running against Dianne Feinstein). A frequent contributor to Alternet, she has a Master’s Degree in both Public Health and Economics. In 2012, she was awarded the US Peace Memorial Foundation´s Peace Prize in recognition of her "creative leadership on the front lines of the anti-war movement." She is also recipient of the 2014 Gandhi Peace Award and the 2010 Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace Prize from the Fellowship of Reconciliation. She is mother of two children, and currently lives in Washington, D.C.