The use of landmines began on the battlefields of two world wars, gathered momentum in Korea and Vietnam, then spread like wildfire throughout the developing world. This important new book traces the history of what has become a global humanitarian crisis. It is the story of the development and proliferation of a weapon of terror, of suffering and devastation, and of a worldwide crusade to put an end to landmines forever. Drawing on a wide range of distinguished interviewees, as well as the authors' own firsthand experiences in severely mine-affected countries, this timely book looks at all sides of the story.
Monin was born and educated in New Zealand. She holds a degree in Political Studies from the University of Otago and a postgraduate Diploma in journalism from the University of Canterbury.
"A highly readable and thoughtful account of the determined efforts to call governments to account over the appalling human cost of landmines...The Devil's Gardens, with its unflinching descriptions of mines and their effects, might help to remind us of the limits of progress so far" Independent "The Devil's Garden is a thoroughly researched and compelling history of landmine use and development" Sunday Tribune "The book poses many questions regarding the irresponsible use and proliferation of mines and provides a ray of hope that treaties and de-mining campaigns will end the landmine devastation of innocent civilians" Military Review
When Diana, Princess of Wales, walked through an Angolan minefield in 1997 many Britons were made aware of the horror and the extent of these 'devil's gardens' for the first time. As Monin and Gallimore argue in this powerful and often shocking book, the landmine is one of the most invidious and destructive legacies of warfare in the 20th century. In Europe after the First World War, in North Africa following the Second World War and in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Afghanistan and the Balkans, a subterranean trail of devastation was bequeathed to posterity, much of it still awaiting in sinister silence the innocent who unsuspectingly puts a foot wrong. Injuries caused by landmines total now around 300,000 worldwide, while the death toll runs into many thousands more. In December 1997 a treaty was signed in Ottawa, becoming law in May 1999, which forbade the production of landmines and made a commitment to their destruction. Although endorsed by some 100 nations, the United States, China and Russia failed to subscribe. Monin and Gallimore begin by charting the rise of the Campaign to Ban Landmines which culminated in the Ottawa agreement and by analyzing why the world's three great super-powers remained outside it. Successive chapters then trace the evolution of the landmine and the history of its deployment since 1914. They are interspersed with chilling little vignettes, such as 'Stepping on a Landmine', which give graphic descriptions of the physical and psychological impact of the injuries inflicted by this most cowardly of weapons, or reveal the fortunes of the social and economic marginality which is so often the fate of its victims. This is sober and thought-provoking reading. (Kirkus UK)
Lydia Monin, Andrew Gallimore
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The Story of Landmines