Buda's Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb

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Verso, 2007 - History - 228 pages
15 Reviews
Celebrated urban historian returns with a compelling account of the "poor man's airforce," from Vietnam to Beirut - Davis' most accessible book yet. On a September day in 1920, an angry Italian anarchist named Mario Buda exploded a horse-drawn wagon filled with dynamite and iron scrap near New York's Wall Street killing 40 people. Since Buda's prototype, the car bomb has evolved into a "poor man's air force," a generic weapon of mass destruction that now craters cities from Bombay to Oklahoma City. In this brilliant and disturbing history, Mike Davis traces its worldwide development, in the process exposing the role of state intelligence agencies - particularly those of the United States, Israel, India, and Pakistan - in globalizing urban terrorist techniques. Davis argues that it is the incessant impact of car bombs, rather than the more apocalyptic threats of nuclear or bio-terrorism, that is producing the most significant mutations in city form and urban lifestyle, as privileged centres of power increasingly surround themselves with "rings of steel" against a weapon that nevertheless remains technologically and politically intractable. -- Description from http://www.bookdepository.co.uk (Oct. 25, 2011).

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Review: Buda's Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb

User Review  - Hepster - Goodreads

A detailed overview of the history of car bombs, from Buda's Wagon of 1920 to around 2006. The information given is supported by a phenomenal number of source citations. A lot is crammed into around ... Read full review

Review: Buda's Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb

User Review  - Amanda - Goodreads

Foremost, an unapologetic rewriting of history. Also, a crash-course in human destruction, a study of cause-and-effect in madness, and a dose of perspective for the ever-present news story of today ... Read full review


Wall Street 1920
Poor Mans Air Force
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About the author (2007)

Mike Davis is the author of several books including Planet of Slums, City of Quartz, Ecology of Fear, Late Victorian Holocausts, and Magical Urbanism. He was recently awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. He lives in Papa'aloa, Hawaii.

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