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The Men Who Stare at Goats

Auteur(s): Jon Ronson
Narrateur(s): Jon Ronson
Durée: 6 h et 36 min
4,3 out of 5 stars (36 évaluations)

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Description

In 1979, a secret unit was established by the most gifted minds within the US Army. Defying all known accepted military practice - and indeed, the laws of physics - they believed that a soldier could adopt the cloak of invisibility, pass cleanly through walls and, perhaps most chillingly, kill goats just by staring at them.

Entrusted with defending America from all known adversaries, they were the First Earth Battalion. And they really weren't joking. What's more, they're back and fighting the War on Terror.

The Men Who Stare at Goats reveals extraordinary - and very nutty - national secrets at the core of George W. Bush's War on Terror. With first-hand access to the leading players in the story, Ronson traces the evolution of these bizarre activities over the past three decades, and sees how it is alive today within US Homeland Security and post-war Iraq.

Why are they blasting Iraqi prisoners-of-war with the theme tune to Barney the Purple Dinosaur? Why have 100 de-bleated goats been secretly placed inside the Special Forces command centre at Fort Bragg, North Carolina? How was the US Military associated with the mysterious mass-suicide of a strange cult from San Diego? The Men Who Stare At Goats answers these, and many more, questions.

Jon Ronson is an award-winning writer and documentary maker. He is the author of many best-selling books, including Frank: The True Story that Inspired the Movie, Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries, The Psychopath Test, The Men Who Stare at Goats and Them: Adventures with Extremists. His first fictional screenplay, Frank, co-written with Peter Straughan, starred Michael Fassbender. He lives in London and New York City.

©2012 Jon Ronson (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

Ce que les critiques en disent

"Few more earnest investigative journalists would have had the brilliant bloody-mindedness to get what he has got and hardly any would have the wit to present it with as much clarity." ( The Observer)
"Simultaneously frightening and hilarious." ( The Times)"

Ce que les auditeurs disent de The Men Who Stare at Goats

Moyenne des évaluations de clients
Au global
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Au global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    3 out of 5 stars

Weird all around

Sooo... I picked up this audiobook because I remembered seeing the trailer for the movie by the same name, and assumed it was a comedy. To my surprise, the original book is neither a comedy nor fiction - it's a completely serious and slightly horrifying true story of an English journalist very persistently attempting to uncover the history of the US military trying to create "psychic warriors" who can use mind powers to fight. It's horrifying BECAUSE it's true, and so incredibly stupid in so many ways that it's mind-boggling that so much time, money, effort, and belief were spent on some of the things the author described. And in light of that, it's quite the opposite of a comedy, although there are obviously some humorous elements because the entire topic is so absurd. Clearly, the movie by the same name took elements of the story and put a set of fictional characters and a fictional story on top; still haven't seen the movie but no doubt it's more amusing. The audiobook is actually read by the author himself, Jon Ronson, and while I appreciate him authentically telling his own story, his slightly lisping English accent just seemed a little bit mismatched for a book mainly about the American military, and made it even harder not to take seriously. Overall not what I was expecting at all, so I guess read it if this kind of history interests you, but if not then probably give this one a miss.

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  • Au global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • PaisleyTurtle
  • 2016-05-31

FINALLY! In Ronson's own voice!

Honesty, I have collected Ronson's audio books for years, but was disappointed to hear "Men" was voiced by an American accented reader. Jon's writing is engaging, involving and compelling but after hearing him reading The Psychopath Test or Them or Lost at Sea, any other voice feels two dimensional by comparison. While the movie tie in version is still interesting, it felt flat. Here, we have Jon giving one thing that is lacking in the other read - the depth of experience. You feel the enthusiasm of a man who was there, across the table, interviewing men who were part of this journey through "psychic soldiers" and experiments in out of body operations.

I have enjoyed Ronson's books, far more than the movies based on his articles, but this was a glaring omission to the cannon which I am extremely glad has been corrected. Thank you, Jon and Audible! Worth the cost... Looking forward to the next!

19 les gens ont trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Diana
  • 2016-12-28

Very interesting investigative journalism + irony

I didn't buy this audio book before because it wasn't narrated by Jon Ronson, and the other Jon Ronson audio books I had listened to led me to believe that his narration, with its solemn tongue-in-cheek ironic delivery is essential to get the full effect of his writing.

When I saw that he had this book redone with his own narration, I bought it. This is a topic I have some interest in - having tried out a remote viewing class, read numerous free pdf's to do with remote viewing, watched many RV videos and listened to many podcasts of interviews of the early remote viewers, and also after having read/listened to some autobiographies of early remote viewers involved in the program.

What a difference to see the program as part of a bigger picture, from another angle!

Because this book places remote viewing in a bigger category of activities, the story also references Heavens Gate, the Waco siege, MK Ultra, Guantanamo, and prisoners in Iraq and the use of various techniques such as sound or chemicals to change behavior. Also the death of a research scientist who fell out of a 10 story building in New York is reported on.

The story ends abruptly, with an unfinished feel, but that is reflective of the reality . . . and life. The book made me uncomfortable and think. If it weren't for the irony and excellent narration and research efforts . . . I am not sure I would have been interested enough to get this book. Because I really liked the previous audio books Jon Ronson published, I bought this . . . but, I learned more than I wanted to know, and feel saddened by what people do to other people . . . and animals.

12 les gens ont trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Rocketboy13
  • 2019-11-25

Kind of Sad

This book is more sad and scary than I was anticipating. The ultimate thrust of the events is the dark side that comes with the study of the paranormal and the various applications of mind control and "enhanced interrogation techniques". I do not know what I was expecting, but the realities of how horrible the US government has been to prisoners of war and even its own citizens wasn't it. While not bad, it is certainly not as funny as you expect from having seen the movie... or from just reading the title. I think understanding that from the start will make it more entertaining and informative, but without that foreknowledge I felt it was a downer to read.

9 les gens ont trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Dubi
  • 2017-01-07

Listen to Goats

There are three ways to experience The Men Who Stare at Goats: read, watch, or listen. Hands down, best choice is to listen to Jon Ronson recite his investigations into how U.S. military and intelligence has explored unconventional approaches to warfare -- psychics, paranormals, psy-ops; using acid as a truth serum or heroin withdrawal as a form of torture; walking through walls, making oneself invisible, dropping foes with a stare (the titular goats being test subjects, not enemy combatants).

I'm sure this makes for a good read, a superior approach perhaps in making sure you get the details right, or can refer back to them if you reach moments of confusion. I'm sure as well that the movie is a waste of time (saw it, hated it) -- for some strange reason, they chose to fictionalize it, when the very best thing about it is that it is true and that most of Ronson's interview subjects are real-life participants in the projects described.

But listening to it on audio has one distinct advantage -- Ronson's narration of his own work. If you haven't listened to Ronson before, his idiosyncratic delivery is initially challenging. But for this material (as is true for most of his books), his approach to interviews and his method of recounting them is just pitch perfect. How he gets people to open up to him is amazing, especially in this case since he's talking to military people about secret projects.

His method is to pretend confusion, pretend that he doesn't understand the more amazing things that are being told to him. Of course he does understand them, which you can tell because of the details he chooses to pursue by feigning dimness. And since much of what he is being told is jaw-droppingly incredible (in its literal sense of straining believability), his ability to narrate as if his jaw is hanging down to his chest, eyes popping and mind blowing, makes for entertaining and illuminating listening.

10 les gens ont trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-11-15

Terrifying and hysterical

I love books that he author narrates and this is no exception! Robson has a deft touch for delivering all of the information you need to draw your own conclusions without spoon-feeding you what he's trying to tell you.

3 les gens ont trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Vladimir Polyakov
  • 2020-05-20

I made myself listen to the whole book, so you won’t have too

Overall: 2 stars because it was in English and there were good translations from chapter to chapter. I still can’t understand the purpose of this book, was it written as a historical look at the development of Psychological Warfare methods in the US or is it a collection of stories and facts that is trying to convey that there are a lot of evildoers in the US government. Performance: the narrator has very peculiar and not very pleasant delivery. His end of the sentence intonations are very strange. From about chapter 10 on, the sound cuts out regularly, missing the whole sentences sometimes. Story: I didn’t learn anything new or interesting I am interested in Physical Sciences, psychology, medicine, history, human development, science fiction. I read and listen to various books in above subjects. This book made no sense to me, combined with less than good delivery, I will not recommend this book

2 les gens ont trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Paul Lamas
  • 2020-04-18

Overall a bit disappointed

Intriguing but overall just nutty and a little boring. Trying to give credence to completely bonkers stories.

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Au global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Steve Craun
  • 2020-07-21

A joke?

At first I thought it was a joke. Then I thought it was funny. Then... I cried because I new it was true.

  • Au global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • michael runner
  • 2020-05-29

fascinating. bizarre. humorous.

highly recommend. read brilliantly. human study along with simply bizarre things the military has done and is likely still doing. unbiased and again the truth is stranger than fiction.

  • Au global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • ian
  • 2020-05-19

Good but a bit dated

This was very enjoyable, but the information is a bit dated when compared to the current situation.