Office—Foreign Report, Jane's Information Group, Sentinel House, 163 Brighton Rd., Coulsdon, Surrey CR5 2YH, England.
Journalist. Foreign Report, England, editor, 1982—; former Reuters correspondent.
The Economist Pocket Africa (" Economist Economic Surveys" series), Hamish Hamilton (London, England), 1994.
Pocket Middle East and North Africa (" Economist Economic Surveys" series), Profile Books (London, England), 1995.
King Hussein: A Life on the Edge, (London, England), 1998, Fromm International (New York, NY), 1999.
British journalist Roland Dallas has been the editor of the world affairs newsletter Foreign Report since 1982. Dallas has written a number of guides as part of a series created by the Economist, and he has also penned a biography of the late king of Jordan.
In King Hussein: A Life on the Edge, Dallas documents Hussein's long reign, from his rise to the throne in 1953 until his death from cancer in 1999. He was known as a peacemaker, and over the decades, any acts of force used by Hussein appeared tame in comparison to those employed by many of Jordan's neighbors. Although there have been other biographies of Hussein, Dallas's was the first published after his death.
Charles Tripp wrote in the Times Literary Supplement that "Hussein's death and the succession of his son, Abdullah, raise questions about the future of Jordan. Having ruled over the kingdom for more than forty-five years, Hussein's imprint on the political life of Jordan has been a powerful one. The mark of the autocrat is strong, and … there is a feeling that the whole apparatus exists on the late king's sufferance."
At the age of eighteen, Hussein took over for his incapacitated father. He was a moderate who kept open channels with Israel, the Palestinians, and other Arab countries, and who was aided by the United States and Britain, as well as Israel, because Hussein was perceived as being a buffer to Egypt, Syria, and Saudi Arabia. Dallas describes Hussein's rule as a "quasi-democracy." Hussein married his fourth wife, American Lisa Halaby, whom he named Queen Noor, in 1978. A Publishers Weekly contributor called the biography "astute, dramatic," and interesting "for the light it sheds on conflict among the Arabs—especially the strife between the king and PLO leader Yasser Arafat, who, after 1967, set up a Palestinian state-within-a-state in Jordan." Library Journal's Ruth K. Baacke called King Hussein "a clearly written, objective, and focused account of Hussein's complex life."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, August, 1999, Mary Carroll, review of King Hussein: A Life on the Edge, p. 1980.
Library Journal, September 15, 1999, Ruth K. Baacke, review of King Hussein, p. 90.
Publishers Weekly, August 9, 1999, review of King Hussein, p. 333.
Times Literary Supplement, February 12, 1999, Charles Tripp, review of King Hussein.*