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A Private War + Q&A The Sunday Times Caroline Donald, Author James Fergusson, Major General Fattorini
May 16, 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Celebrated war correspondent Marie Colvin was a woman who is as comfortable downing martinis with high society’s elite as she is brazenly staring down warlords and fleeing from gunfire. Driven by an enduring desire to bear witness and give voice to the voiceless, Colvin charges into danger, constantly testing the limits between bravery and bravado.
Rosamund Pike gives a heartfelt performance as Marie Colvin and the film is well timed. A US court has just found Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian government guilty of the extrajudicial killing of Sunday Times war correspondent Marie Colvin in Homs in 2012. She was in the building that the Syrian authorities shelled – bearing witness to their cynicism and brutality to the very end.
Our screening onThursday 16 May includes a Q&A with Major General Charles Fattorini and James Fergusson, author of A Million Bullets and Al-Britannia, chaired by The Sunday Times journalist, Caroline Donald.
James Fergusson started out in journalism in 1989 on The Independent. He has written for many publications since, covering current affairs in Europe, North and East Africa, the Far East, the Caribbean and, especially, Central Asia and Afghanistan. For three years he was also the political features editor of Robert Maxwell’s ill-fated newspaper, The European. From 1998 to 2000 he worked in Sarajevo as a press spokesman for the Office of the High Representative, the body charged with implementing the Dayton Peace Accord that ended Bosnia’s civil war in 1995. This was followed by a spell at Hakluyt & Co, the London-based corporate intelligence firm. His first book, Kandahar Cockney (2004), was a Radio 4 Book of the Week, and told the story of Mir, his Afghan fixer/interpreter who he helped gain political asylum in London. A Million Bullets (2008), about Nato’s campaign in southern Afghanistan, was the British Army’s Military Book of the Year, and became required reading on many Staff College courses This was followed by Taliban (2010), an argument for a negotiated settlement to the Afghan war. In 2013 came The World’s Most Dangerous Place, which deals with Somalia and its diaspora, and the security threat posed to the West by the Al Qaida affiliate, Al Shabaab. It was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize and Paddy Power Political Book Awards International Affairs Book of the Year. James met Marie Colvin several times.
Charles Fattorini recently retired from HM Forces as a Major General having completed 37 years service. His last 3 appointments were: Defence and Security Advisor to the Sultanate of Oman; Defence Advisor British High Commission Nairobi; and Defence Advisor British High Commission Islamabad. He has served on operations in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kosovo and Afghanistan/Pakistan.
Caroline Donald was a colleague of Marie Colvin’s having been the Editor of the Gardening section of The Sunday Times for over twenty years (as she says “very much at the soft end of the newspaper”).
Tickets are only available through the Westlands Yeovil website.