WHY — the many mysteries of the War on Terror

The War on Terror had no logic to it. 9-11 made no sense.
Wilderness of Mirrors is a conspiracy theory that stitches these insanities together in a deep satire of our military-industrial complex.

“Wilderness of Mirrors provides a scathing critique of the CIA.”
— David Huddle

Satire is a genre of literature in which vices, follies, and abuses and shortcomings are held up to ridicule, ideally with the intent of shaming individuals, corporations and governments into improvement.

The inimitable SFF master Tim Powers gave his blessing to a connection between his novel DECLARE and the new novel Wilderness of Mirrors . Powers is the master of filling history with magical explanations — he fills in the blanks of historical events with fantastical explanations. Powers has compared his work to doing “brilliant card tricks in a perfectly dark room.” Wilderness of Mirrors participates in this grand SFF tradition.

Here are the historical elisions that are filled in by this story.

– Why attack skyscrapers?
(Tall buildings are not necessarily strategic targets)

– What is Gulf War Syndrome? How did this come about for soldiers invading Iraq from Kuwait in 1991? (Details on the 
medically unexplained illness which still affects veterans today)

– Why did Mohammed Atta go to Prague before 9-11? (According to documents collected under FOIA, there exists some debate about Atta’s NYC itinerary in the CIA chatter)

– Why did the Twin Towers fall down so completely? Why not just the upper floor damaged? Why did the building next door collapse the way it did?
 (Details on Twin Towers collapse and conspiracy theories about the collapse)

– Why did the United States not immediately invade Iraq, but instead waited until 1 year later?
 (The many reasons for the Iraq adventure)

– Why did the United States attack Iraq at all?
 (The changing rationales around the Iraq invasion)

– Why was information about “weapons of mass destruction” never borne out by findings in the desert? (Questions about the intelligence failures or possible White House spin)

– Why did the US torture people in custody? (Here’s the proof about our torture) (Yet torture doesn’t work to get information. Soldiers in the Armed Forces all know this. It’s part of basic interrogator training. So why was it used?)

– Why waterboarding? What precisely led the CIA to use this bizarre technique with no history of efficacy?

– Why were people at Gitmo taken into isolation, deprived of sound and light and utterly cut off from humanity? (No rational reason for this… doesn’t assist in any collection of information, just cruel and unusual punishment. Why?) This is still happening today

– Why did Cheney advocate using the “dark side” when most things known as “dark” techniques are counter to US values and the US constitution? What was he talking about? (Cheney’s strange remarks and outcomes cited here)

– Why did the US kill 100,000 Iraqi citizens? Why did these many civilians suffer in the war? This level of casualties in a civilian population hasn’t been seen since WW2.

– Why were the Saudis and other nations who clearly supported the hijackers seen as untouchable?


– The author of WILDERNESS OF MIRRORS would be happy to explain to any reader that the explanations in the novel are just as rational and straightforward as the bizarre torture-induced explanations offered by the Bush Administration for the bizarre excesses and continued travesties of the War on Terror.

– Dick Cheney, the debate floor is open. Do tell, did this magic happen? Or are your explanations more rational?