Expelled: A Journalist’s Descent into the Russian Mafia State

Luke Harding, Author
Luke Harding. Palgrave Macmillan, $27 (320p) ISBN 978-0-230-34174-6
Reviewed on: 03/26/2012
Release date: 05/22/2012
Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-137-04838-7
Hardcover - 310 pages - 978-0-85265-248-0
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This terrifying, bold exposé opens with the 2007 break-in at Harding’s Moscow apartment , starting the brutal state campaign to deport him from increasingly repressive Russia. Harding, foreign correspondent for the British newspaper the Guardian, knows his place is bugged, his every move tailed, and all his contacts closely watched by the Russian Federal Security Service, or FBS, successor to the KGB, as he tries to monitor the national mood under the authoritarian rule of Vladimir Putin. Digging in areas where foreigners rarely dare to probe, the correspondent stirs the Kremlin’s ire when he penetrates Putin’s regime with its select hierarchy, secrecy, intimidation of rivals, and a multibillion-dollar fortune to maintain its power. He has a ringside seat at the bloody Russia-Georgia war, talks to a few Kremlin foes and political rivals, and gets an invite to Lefortovo, the legendary KGB prison, for questioning. Following his stories of WikiLeaks’ Russian revelations, Harding is deemed “an enemy of the state” and the FSB harassment accelerates full-tilt. Absorbing, defiant, and essential, Harding systematically picks at the festering economic and political wounds inflicted by the repressive and corrupt Russian state on its people before his deportation to England. (May)
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