GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby KingSimeonSound » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:05 pm

Agreed. There's no greater fallacy than the saying "crime doesn't pay".... it certainly does and endures because of this.
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Fri Nov 01, 2013 4:20 pm

Another extract from the book (the author's not, actually):

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Last June, while putting the finishing touches to this work, I received from Jamaica the phone call I had feared for a few weeks. I knew what it meant: Duane Waxteen was dead. Duane was the Don (godfather), of Tallawah Town, a small community in Kingston. He had been on the run for a while, after he had shot at the police who had come to question him about a homicide. Nobody really expected him to resurface alive. His body, stabbed and shot, was eventually cast up by the sea on a Kingston beach, so decomposed his family could hardly identify him.
Waxteen killed his first man when he was seventeen. The guy had molested his sister, he shot him thirteen times in broad daylight, in the middle of a main avenue. Released shortly afterwards—as no witness turned up against him—he celebrated by drinking a beer. From that day on, his life has been a storm of fear, worries, and regrets. He made it, nonetheless, to the highest social position he could have dreamt of, to become his community’s Don. When I met him, he was ruling a phalange of veteran gunmen who had survived the political wars of the 1980s, and a guard of young and dreadful wolves. Dead at thirty-seven, including ten years behind bars—quite an achievement in lethal Jamaica.
Last May, when the police reached his place, he used his girlfriend as a human shield, firing at the officers. Then he jumped a fence—losing his handgun in the process—and disappeared. He did not get far. According to the police investigation, he embarked on a small boat near Kingston Harbour to flee the country. The smugglers operating it apparently shot and stabbed him to death shortly after their departure, then threw his body overboard; a terrible ending, quite predictable—nonetheless disturbing. Duane, after all, was nothing but a puppet manipulated by what Jamaicans call bigger heads—those who make all the profits, who set up the rules of a rigged game, the big fishes who feast on the small ones... or have them eaten by crabs. Crime in Jamaica is just a political mafia.
Let’s make it clear, Dons are no angels but monsters for the most part; bred, fed, and tamed by politicians who protect them, punish them, and sometimes have them killed. Considering the brutal ending of Waxteen and his entire existence, one may wonder who are the real monsters in Jamaica? Who does crime really profit?
In 2010, the police and the army raided the community of the most powerful Don of the island, Christopher “Dudus” Coke, the Prime Minister’s creature. His downfall led to the downfall of his protector, and to a decrease of crime on the island. And some would like us to believe that crime has been emancipated from its political mentors, that it now lies in the hands of the small and ill-organized gangs scattered all over the country—as if Duane Waxteen and his likes had taken control of Jamaica. A joke.
In 1995, American journalist Laurie Gunst published her book Born Fi’ Dead, about the birth of Jamaican posses (gangs) and their relocating in the States in the early 1980s. As I translated it into French some fifteen years later, I kept on adding footnotes to tell the readers what had happened since 1995. The downfall of “Dudus” is—or could be—a turning point in the history of crime in Jamaica, as the new Government has decided to grab the opportunity to eradicate crime and corruption. The ideal time to tell the half of the story that is never told in books—the dark face of Jamaica, a morbid reality shared by three million people who live under the yoke of organized crime, its armies of child soldiers, and a bunch of ruthless politicians; the latter being much more dangerous than all the Duane Waxteens of Jamaica.

Thibault Ehrengardt

Buy the E-book: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FAOFXU8
The website: http://www.gangs-of-jamaica.com

Also, a few links for the first reviews, in English (rather a news) on United Reggae:http://unitedreggae.com/news/n1654/102213/gangs-of-jamaica-the-babylonian-wars ; in Spanish (from Argentina): http://www.jamming.com.ar/web/principal ... on-problem ; or in Italian, on Reggae.it: http://www.reggae.it/gangs-of-jamaica-t ... nians-war/
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Sun Nov 17, 2013 9:07 am

Reviewed in THE GLEANER today (by G. Ashby) :

"Thibault Ehrengardt pens a provocative work that transcends the violence and mayhem that bleed through its every page. This is clinical journalism. It is insightful, investigative and written with sheer brilliance. It is how a story should be told. It is raw and cutting, dragging the reader into the trenches of an urban battlefield."

Full article: http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/2013 ... arts5.html

The book: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FAOFXU8
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:10 pm

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The hard copy of the review.

Thibault Ehrengardt pens a provocative work that transcends the violence and mayhem that bleed through its every page. This is clinical journalism. It is insightful, investigative and written with sheer brilliance. It is how a story should be told. It is raw and cutting, dragging the reader into the trenches of an urban battlefield.

Gangs of Jamaica: Babylonian Wars reads like Ehrengardt's intimate diary. Given rare access to the gangs that litter Jamaica's urban landscape, he is mindful of not overplaying his hand with sensationalism. He is measured, deftly detailing the cesspool of wanton viciousness that weighs heavily on the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), an agency that is mandated to hit back at urban warlords. But when they do, we are reminded of Friedrich Nietzsche's famous quote: "Be careful when you fight with monsters, lest you become one."

The dramatic capture and extradition of Christopher 'Dudus' Coke that resulted in damning political repercussions for the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) does not escape the writer's radar. It is a defining moment. It is also the underbelly of Jamaica's violence - a sacrilegious marriage between career politicians and hoodlums.

Here, crime is the offspring of corrupt politicians who carve out garrisons or fiefdoms, doling out cash, contracts and even guns for enduring political support. It is an internecine quid pro quo that germinated in the 1970s and grew to incorrigible proportions in the 1980s and 1990s. The 'dons' collected taxes and supposedly maintained law and order. With crime on the decline over the last two years and concerted efforts made to weed out crooked cops, we must ask if civility will return to Jamaica, especially with the downfall of the island's biggest 'Don' and the return of the People's National Party (PNP)? This is the $64,000 question. The writer is not overly hopeful. Jamaica is a violent society and crime is systemic and institutionalised, he argues. In the 1980s, it had spread like a deadly virus, destabilising the inner cities of the United States with the proliferation of drugs and guns courtesy of the Gulleymen, the Yardies, and Vivian Blake's Shower Posse

The Gangs of Jamaica chronicles a society turned on its head. Poverty, despair, greed, drugs, prostitution and murder create a social catacomb. Crooked cops and politicians add to an asphyxiating crisis - one that will take years to remedy. Not that law enforcement isn't trying. The Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption unit has nabbed scores of 'dirty' cops and the PNP's political brass has vowed to clean house. But scepticism persists.

The JCF is hamstrung by a shortage of advanced technology in intelligence gathering, logistical problems, corrupt personnel and officers who have psychologically unravelled under the pressures of an unforgiving profession. But there are officers who are worth their salt. The reader is introduced to hard-working officers such as, Sasha and Sergeants Adams and McKenzie of the Mobile Reserve.

And the legend of Trinity and Reneto Adams - the "Schwarzeneggers" of law enforcement in earlier years are juxtaposed with Rico, Ricardo Hilton, Duane Waxteen and Dudus, some of the most notorious gangsters. And in a twisted way, in this business of gangstarism, "until you are known as a monster you are not a star". In this battle of wills, we hear all sides including the views of National Security Minister Peter Bunting and those of Commissioner Owen Ellington.
After decades of strife, the Jamaican is psychologically scarred. When law-enforcement personnel and 'dons' collide, M16s, Glocks, MP 5s and AK 47 blaze ammo with abandon. The outcome is predictable. Blood.

Urban Jamaica has become a laboratory for the criminal psychologist, the child psychologist and the sociologist.

(...)
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby kalcidis » Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:28 pm

Congratulations on the good review. For us that don't read books on a Kindle or PC will it ever be printed or available through pages like Lulu?
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:07 pm

Thanks, Kalcidis.

Poor you guys who never read a book on a PC! :D

In fact, distribution in the US or the rest of the world is very complicated, it requires a lot of connections, a lot of investments etc. So the e-solution is quite perfect. It will only happen if a publisher wants to buy the license to print it and to sell hard copies in his own country. Not too familiar with Lulu (apart from the Emperor's dog that cost Sangster's life). Unfortunately, several other e-books are on their way... wanna get a kindle for Christmas? :D

TE
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby kalcidis » Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:33 pm

And you think the yardies them have it hard. My eyes get slightly irritated after checking the PC screen to much. Life tuff yunno. I definitely think you should check Lulu (.com). From what I've understood it's a cheap and easy way of getting a book published and available for anyone to order worldwide.
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:13 pm

Will consider seriously, thanks. But I guess you should have a look at e-readers too - they have no backlight so you nah get red eyes. :D
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Tue Jan 21, 2014 6:29 am

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GANGS OF JAMAICA,

Interview of the author

at CAMERA IN THE SUN!
http://camerainthesun.com/wp-content/up ... ngs-42.jpg

The book: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FAOFXU8
The website: http://www.gangs-of-jamaica.com
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby kalcidis » Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:45 am

I'm guessing this was the link you meant: http://camerainthesun.com/?p=26658

Will read it during my break.
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby swaby » Tue Jan 21, 2014 10:27 am

I could not disagree more with most of the posts on this thread. For me it is the usual 'expose' of gang warfare in Jamaica without any real dissection of the root causes. I get fed up with this negative view of the island and in my opinion the same book could be written about most major cities in the world. If you did deep enough you will find this level of dislocation from the wider society. It just seems to always be Jamaica that suffers from this, in my opinion, distorted view when there are far more uplifting stories that could be told about the island and the people.
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:10 pm

Thanks Kalcidis, that's what I meant indeed.

Swaby, I'm sorry if I've written the same ol' boring book but I'm afraid you've just posted the same ol' boring argument that I am quite fed up with. Guess you suffer from the Smile Jamaica Syndrom. But this is journalism, not a tourist board publication - not even a reggae board one. You think Jamaica is a paradise? Think again. The major problem of Jamaica, and the root of all evil ? Violence. Sponsored by politicians. That makes it the third most dangerous country in the world (not like EVERY other country in the world, sorry). You don't want to hear about it ? Well, no problem. Little kids hide under their blanket at night, because they think that what they cant' see can't see them either. But they're just little kids... ;)
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:01 pm

.

GANGS OF JAMAICA (DREAD Editions): $2.99 only!
(at amazon.com and amazon.co.uk only).


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http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FAOFXU8
A new extract: http://www.gangs-of-jamaica.com
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Wed Apr 16, 2014 4:13 pm

A short trailer:

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-r8pflRAOo

Gangs of Jamaica: the Babylonian Wars (DREAD Editions). Less than $7 at Amazon.com
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Re: GANGS OF JAMAICA (English Version)

Postby Natty Dread Magazine » Tue Jul 08, 2014 12:13 pm

.

HARD COPIES eventually AVAILABLE! Kalcidis, we're waiting for your order now (see above). :D

25% OFF for a few days!

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Buy it here: http://www.lulu.com/shop/thibault-ehren ... 98654.html
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