Book Reading/Signing: KILL KHALID: The Failed Mossad Assassination of Khalid Mishal and the Rise of Hamas

Tue, March 31, 2009 7:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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Book Reading and Discussion: Australian Journalist Paul McGeough

KILL KHALID: The Failed Mossad Assassination of Khalid Mishal and the Rise of Hamas, The New Press, 2009.

Free and Open to the Public

* * * * *

Over the last two decades, Hamas has become both one of the most demonized militant groups in the United States and also the democratically elected, champion party of Palestine. However, the very fact that it still exists at all is a miracle; just ten years ago, Hamas was a far more marginal militant group, isolated by Yasser Arafat and systematically jailed and harassed by Israel. But one botched assassination set in motion a series of improbable events.

Journalist Paul McGeough’s KILL KHALID tells the story of the 1997 assassination attempt on Khalid Mishal by Mossad, Israel’s spy agency. Mishal, then a little-known Hamas official, eventually survived the poisoning and later rose to become the head of Hamas, leading the group’s social welfare programs and directing militant actions during the ensuing decade. McGeough reconstructs both the history of Hamas and the decade of dramatic, repercussive action that followed Mishal’s near death. Interviewing key players and observers of the Palestine/Israel conflicts, including Khalid Mishal, himself, KILL KHALID is a riveting work of investigative journalism.

About the Author:

Paul McGeough is an award-winning foreign correspondent specializing in frontline reporting from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and Iran. A former managing editor of Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald, he has twice been named Australian Journalist of the Year and in 2002 was awarded the Johns Hopkins University-based SAID Novartis Prize for excellence in international journalism. McGeough has also won numerous Walkley Awards—the Australian equivalent of the Pulitzer. He regularly appears as a world affairs commentator on television and radio, including the BBC, CNN, CBS, Fox, RTE (Ireland), and all of the key Australian news networks. McGeough is the author of three books on the Middle East. He lives in Sydney, Australia.

Early Praise:

“Hollywood seldom comes up with a story this good—Mossad
assassins, exotic poison, a desperate chase through downtown Amman, captured agents, a king's ransom and the race for a deathbed cure. Paul McGeough tracked down the players and tells their tale with verve.” –Barton Gellman, The Washington Post

“Gripping . . . A journalistic tour-de-force, and a sobering reminder of how little has been achieved during 60 years of Israeli efforts in Palestine." –KIRKUS REVIEWS (starred review)

“A fascinating account of Mossad’s 1997 assassination attempt of Hamas’s boss, Khalid Mishal… provides a riveting account of Israel’s botched poisoning of Mishal and the ensuing and desperate negotiations between King Hussein, President Clinton, unrepentant Israeli prime minister Netanyahu, the PLO’s Arafat, and various diplomats and spies.” –LIBRARY JOURNAL

"Not for nothing is Paul McGeough regarded among his colleagues around the world as one the finest reporters ever to come out of Australia, a country that has produced more than its share of tough guys with typewriters. In Kill Khalid, McGeough has written a pacey, riveting and controversial book that has all the compulsion of a Le Carre novel. In his account of Khalid Mishal's journey from a botched Israeli assassination attempt to the leadership of Hamas, the Irish- born Aussie offers more than the compelling story of a Palestinian Pimpernel. He leads his reader through the turbulent landscape of recent Middle Eastern history, and, true to his iconoclastic form, takes few prisoners of his own." --John Fisher Burns, London Bureau Chief, The New York Times

"Paul McGeough is a fine journalist, and his latest book is one of those rare beasts: an incisive, insider's history about one of the world's most intractable conflicts, and a ripping yarn to boot. Kill Khalid is a must-read." –Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker

"Kill Khalid excels at interweaving journalistic immediacy with the persistent, long term undercurrents; the personal with the political; the accidental with the structural; and the comic moments with divine interventions—which all together explain so vividly the ascendancy of the Hamas movement." –Amira Haas, journalist, author of Drinking the Sea at Gaza

"Paul McGeough's account of Israel's clumsy attempt to kill Hamas leader Khalid Mishal reads like a thriller. It includes extraordinary detail about a botched assassination plot and a deal to reverse the effects of a deadly toxin. This is a cracking story, masterfully and colorfully told." –Tony Walker, co-author of Arafat: The Biography

Last updated: 2009-03-27 01:37:22

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Kill Khaled

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