The Tethered Goat

by Nicholas Winer

As the last playground of the Cold War, the Horn of Africa in the 1980s was a heady mix of idealism, war and political terror. Mark, a young aid worker in the tragic famine that decimated Ethiopia, is caught between his idealism, the ruthless oppression of Mengistu's Stalinesque regime and the cynical games being played by the British and American Embassies. After being briefly arrested by a fat chameleon of a policeman he and his girlfriend Val begin to unearth the sordid tale of a young south Sudanese fighter, arrested and tortured by Ethiopian security officials with the connivance of an insider in the UN. As they explore the murky world of diplomatic intrigue in a war zone Mark finds out too late he's a pawn in a plot to guarantee the West's access to Sudan's oil and the unwitting ally of an unscrupulous Ethiopian dissident.

The author with Bob Geldof standing in front a Relief Food Depot in northern Ethiopia, 1987.

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