Terrorism - the deliberate use of fear as a political tool - is mostly regarded as a modern horror, implemented by bombs, hijackings and assassinations. But the roots of terrorism stretch far back to the Middle Ages, when the forefathers of the modern world's most uncompromising Islamist terrorists, such as al-Qaeda, laid down their murderous creed. According to tales brought back to Europe by Marco Polo, the Grand Master of the Assassins fed his followers with hashish before they were indulged with the sexual favours of young 'houris'. The Assassin was then told he had experienced the heavenly garden of Paradise and would spend all eternity there, provided he lived and died in the service of the sect.
In "God's Assassins", the authors reinterpret the history and mythology of the Assassins, to create a thought-provoking collision between past and present which includes: the bloody narrative of the Crusades, when East met West in holy war; the history of assassination in furtherance of religious or political ends, and the myth and reality of drugs as a 'mnemonic' to murder; the concept of brainwashing and the belief in creating 'sleeper' assassins; the recreation of Hasan-i-Sabbah as a phantom subversive by cult writer William S. Burroughs; and, the Assassin's creed of modern-day Islamists, with their belief in martyrdom through murder - contrasted with the progressive thinking of the Ismailis, the true descendants of Hasan and his Nizari sect. This vibrant living history is compelling reading for everyone intrigued by the crises of our age. Dispelling the idea of political and religious assassinations as a peculiarly modern phenomenon, "God's Assassins" also explores the chilling implications of Hasan-i-Sabbah's legendary dark maxim: 'Nothing is true. Everything is permitted'.
Publisher: Ian Allan Publishing
Weight: 363 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 23 mm