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The Invisible People is a revealing and at times shocking look inside the United States's response to one of the greatest catastrophes the world has ever known -- the global AIDS crisis. A true story of politics, bureaucracy, disease, internecine warfare, and negligence, it illustrates that while the pandemic constitutes a profound threat to U.S. economic and security interests, at every turn the United States has failed to act in the face of this pernicious menace.
During the past twenty years, more than 65 million people across the globe have become infected with HIV. Already 25 million around the world have died -- more than all of the battle deaths in the twentieth century combined. By decade's end there will be an estimated 25 million AIDS orphans. If trends continue, by 2025, 250 million global HIV-AIDS cases are a distinct possibility.
Beyond the ineffable human toll, the pandemic is reshaping the social, economic, and geopolitical dimensions of our world. Eviscerating national economies, creating an entire generation of orphans, and destroying military capacity, the disease is generating pressures that will lead to instability and possibly even state failure and collapse in sub-Saharan Africa. Poised to explode in Eastern Europe, Russia, India, and China, AIDS will have devastating and destabilizing effects of untold proportions that will reverberate throughout the global economy and the international political order.
In this gripping account that draws on more than two hundred interviews with key political insiders, policy makers, and thinkers, Greg Behrman chronicles the red tape, colossal blunders, monumental egos, power plays, and human pain and suffering that comprise America's woeful response to the AIDS crisis. Behrman's unprecedented access takes you inside the halls of power from seminal White House meetings to tumultuous turf battles at World Health Organization headquarters in Geneva, heated debates in the United Nations, and chilling discoveries at the Centers for Disease Control. Behrman also brings us into the field to meet the people who live in the midst of AIDS devastation in places like a school yard in Namibia, the red-light district in Bombay, and an orphanage in South Africa.
Intensely researched and vividly detailed, The Invisible People is a groundbreaking and compellingly readable account of the appalling destruction caused by more than two decades of American abdication in the face of the defining humanitarian catastrophe of our time.