A landmark historical investigation into crimes against humanity and the nature of evil
Sprawling and illuminating, Dan Gretton's I You We Them is an unprecedented study of perpetrators of crimes against humanity: the "desk killers" who ordered and directed some of the worst atrocities of the last century. From Albert Speer's Nazi complicity to Royal Dutch Shell's role in the murder of the Nigerian activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, Gretton probes the depths of the figure "who, by giving orders, uses paper or a phone or a computer to kill, instead of a gun."
Over the past twenty years, Gretton has interviewed survivors and perpetrators, and poured over archives and thousands of pages of testimony. But I You We Them is as much about understanding the psychology of desk killers as it is about the journey Gretton took to do so. He weaves contemplative interludes--walking in the woods, reminiscing about a lost love, considering moral conundrums that have consumed humanity for millennia--between his research and analysis. The result is a genre-bending work steeped as much in historical and psychological illumination as it is in personal reflection.
Synthesizing history, reportage, and memoir, I You We Them is a groundbreaking journal of discovery that bears witness, records, and attempts to understand the largest questions before humanity. Gretton leads us on a journey into the heart of darkness that ultimately defies notions of time, location, or identity. "The methods of killing may have changed," he writes, "but the desk killers are still here."