Musa Al-Halool, from Raqqa Syria, has put together 36 tales on the subject of the Syrian Civil War, the Assad government, and the authoritarian style of other Arab dictators. The heart of The Dusk Visitor is short fiction that paints a dystopian landscape, Kafkaesque, life that appears to offer hope and yet is riven with absurdity, unfreedom, fear, and death.
The author reveals his intentions when he titles one section “Che Ti Dice La Patria” a chant used by Italian Fascists in the 1920s and that Hemingway chose for the title of his 1927 short story. The author is well aware that Hemingway warned the world of the rise of Fascism and World War Two in his reports from Italy in the 1920s and from Spain at the time of Guernica. Now, Musa Al-Halool tips us off, in this one phrase. The dystopian world he describes in the Middle East is what awaits the US and Europe. Our current resurgence of undemocratic sentiment, sleeper cells, and militias mirrors what Hemingway was seeing in Europe.