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Egypt’s best known journalist presents an indictment of Sadat’s domestic and international policies, finding his role of superstar of the media purchased at the. Mohamed Hassanein Heikal, the renowned Egyptian journalist, writes on the first page of Autumn of Fury that he was “very fond of Sadat as a man.” The reader. Autumn of Fury: The Assassination of Sadat During the few moments that passed between the murder of Sadat and the seizure of his.

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They are inaccurate and untrue.

AUTUMN OF FURY: The Assassination of Sadat by Mohamed Heikal | Kirkus Reviews

Translations of this item: Courage and vision had no role in Sadat’s decision to go to Jerusalem in November Sadat had found that vodka was a helpful stimulant The economic opening of Egypt vury ended the effort to build a socialist economy and paved the way for maldistribution of income and massive corruption. Mohamed Hassanein Heikal, the renowned Egyptian journalist, writes on the first page of Autumn of Fury that he was “very fond of Sadat as a man. Not even the Swiss can do that.

Finally, on matters of interpretation, Heikal displays an extreme political viewpoint. Here, substantiating the charge that Sadat was self-indulgent and isolated, is an account of the President’s daily routine: The absence of documentation—only a handful of footnotes and almost no attributions—makes it impossible independently to verify Heikal’s assertions.

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The Assassination of Sadat By. But the key to redeeming Nasser’s name is to blacken that of his successor; every act by Sadat is portrayed in the worst possible light. Most of what Heikal writes in Autumn of Fury is new and much of it is damning.

Sadat arrested the loyal opposition and mishandled the growing Islamic and Coptic movements. In return what had the Israelis conceded?


This sort of attitude gives one little confidence in the author. Be the first to discover new talent! Still, one cannot dismiss as mere resentment Heikal’s description of the new rich class of entrepreneurs created by Sadat’s economic policies, and its pervasive corruption; nor can one write off his remarks on Sadat’s growing political isolation and its outcome–popular unrest, communal violence, political repression, and the growth of underground anti-regime movements.

But the real purpose is quite different; to revive the memory of Sadat’s predecessor, Gamal Abdul Nasser.

Once a year he personally supervised “a bonfire in which all papers he thought would be better forgotten were destroyed”—papers dealing with the disbursement of secret funds and transcriptions of telephone conversations. Those much closer to Sadat than he asdat categorically denounced this book as unreliable. Parts of Autumn of Fury may be true, to be sure, but how can the reader tell which ones? Heikal pursues two thoroughly negative themes in this book: These accusations, set out in great detail, constitute the bulk of the book.

On the one hand, he dismisses as “an implausible story” documented accounts of Mu’ammar al-Qaddafi’s wanting to assassinate Sadat. In his effort to condemn everything associated with Sadat, Heikal ends up justifying any force that opposed him, even his killers.

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After a couple of hours of this he would be complaining of the burden of business “They are killing me with work” and would adjourn with a friend for perhaps some more vodka, followed by a light lunch of cold chicken or meat and salad. Do his facts match those in the public record and are his judgments trustworthy? Instead, Sadat “was not really interested in exploiting the initial victories of Egyptian arms, Please provide an email address.


In the account of events leading up to the Jerusalem trip, Heikal omits the critical joint U. For complete regulations, see the “Guidelines for Reader Comments”.


For Heikal’s charges to stick, he must be above suspicion and his reliability must be established. Heikal, the last Nasserist, is dead at These, drawn from Heikal’s insider knowledge of Egyptian politics—he claims to have been “closer to [Sadat] than anyone else The rejection of neutralism made Egypt a ward of the U. The credibility of Autumn of Fury depends entirely on the veracity of the author.

A more persuasive case against Sadat would analyze why he was alone in the quest for peace, and therefore could not negotiate a broader settlement, and why Egypt’s economic problems have defeated both Nasser’s socialism and Sadat’s free-enterprise policies.

By clicking on “Submit” you agree that you have read and agree to the Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. His basic difference with the President, however, concerns the aftermath of the war in October He fails both tests.

He says that Jimmy Carter was “of course delighted” by Sadat’s trip; anyone who watched television that day will remember the President’s dour reaction as he came out of church. Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. On the other hand, he seriously considers the notion that the CIA arranged for Sadat’s assassination, deciding against this explanation only because “Sadat’s regime was still able to serve American interests in the Middle East.

Rather, this was a political maneuver to escape domestic economic problems, nothing more: Rather than guess mistakenly, he would do better to ignore Mohamed Heikal’s angry testimony and await a more solid account.