The dirty truth of Yasmina Khadra | Babelia

It is to spare known the story of Yasmina Khadra, pseudonym of Mohamed Moulessehoul, officer of the Algerian army, who used this identity composed of the two names of his wife to denounce, from that privileged watchtower that gave him his position, the scourges of Algerian society. That is one of the great virtues of the Algiers Trilogy, a series starring Commissioner Brahim Lob and that gave him literary reputation and prestige. Then the author has combined various scenarios (Tel Aviv in The attempt; Brussels and Paris in Khalil; Libya in The last night of Rais) with other novels that returned to their native country (What are the monkeys waiting for).

In Sarah Ikker's Dishonor (Alliance, translation by Wenceslao- Carlos Lozano) travels to Tangier to offer us a hard dissection of a classist, clientelist, macho and corrupt society, at least in its upper spheres, where much of the plot takes place. Far from betting on great explanations, Khadra takes advantage of the dialogues to uncover the garbage can. On the first page we find the police lieutenant Driss Ikker drunk lost in the room of a brothel of bad death. We do not know, yet, that he is a complete policeman who has suffered a misfortune ten before; We do not know, yet, that he is the son of poor farmers in the interior of the country who have carved their own way; neither, but we will see it right away, that discovering the truth about the rape of his wife is not going to be easy because those who send are not interested.

Every aspect of the plot that points to the violation of Sarah Ikker has obscure motives is managed in the text by trade and, above all, respect for the reader; there are no obvious nor unnecessary underlines. The argument advances between the procedural and the intimate story of a broken couple and does so thanks to two complex protagonists full of chiaroscuro. The fact that the lieutenant is a complete policeman does not mean that he is a man without fault. If you are looking for pure or typical characters you have made a mistake in the window. Khadra uses the third person for the reader to observe next to the character - something that already gives him runsettling results, for example, in Khalil- and that he feels identified sometimes, disgusted at other times. Lieutenant Ikker is a plug-in who does not hesitate to use his marriage to ascend, but above all he is a macho who carries as a burden that his wife has been raped. "It is hard for me to take on the misfortune that has come upon me," he says to Sarah as if he were the rape. "That night you were not the only one who was torn apart," he adds.

The victim's portrait is very well profiled. Sarah sinks at the misunderstanding of the sexist world around her and the superficiality of the women who try to help her. The dishonor of rape in that society is a poison that sinks the lives of both. The lieutenant gives himself to the search for truth as a remedy to all his ills but he suspects from a very early age that he is being deceived, that the reality he is facing is unbearable. Although Khadra is not given to thriller structures or spectacular twists, the last pages of the book give the rest a complex and different sense that could be derived from the reading of the criminal account. It has been seen as a love story, but it may be something much darker.


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