Nick McDonell

Nick McDonell is a writer and co-founder of The Zomia Centre.

From The Blog
18 August 2022

In January 2021, seven months before the fall of Kabul, representatives of the US-backed government of Afghanistan met with Taliban negotiators in Doha, Qatar. It was one of several inconclusive rounds of talks that had been going on for years. They failed for many reasons, but one may have been that negotiators on all sides believed they were under surveillance by the Americans, which made it difficult, perhaps impossible, to build trust.

Diary: A Friendly Fighting Force

Nick McDonell, 5 March 2020

Mostwars today are proxy wars. Russia, Iran, the US and others rely on local forces to achieve military goals like annexing Crimea, or defeating Islamic State. Proxies, in turn, exploit foreign interests for their own purposes, and sometimes deal with competing, even warring, interests at the same time. What they never do, it seems, is call themselves proxies. They see themselves instead...

Diary: In the ER, in Baghdad

Nick McDonell, 5 May 2016

No one​ has a monopoly on violence in Iraq today. Competing Shia militias are as powerful as the army and police. They are seen as integral to the fight against Isis and officially sanctioned by the state, though they’re widely reported to commit war crimes, mostly against Sunnis. The Imam Ali Brigade, a Shia militia known for posing with severed heads and for its close ties to both...

Shizza my drizzle: Nick McDonell

William Skidelsky, 5 September 2002

Nick McDonell’s first novel (written, in case you haven’t read a newspaper recently, when he was 17) is set on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, and focuses on a group of teenagers...

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