It is 2003 and two private security companies, Redline in the UK and Eagle in the US are preparing to go to Iraq. Redline's leader Westerby is dreaming of a world where the sun never sets on the Empire and has bought himself a pith helmet and a monocle. Eagle's boss, Flint, wants to make up for not going to Vietnam, while his second in command TJ is dreaming of a new boat. Westerby's reluctant recruit, Carlingford, wants to escape his dead end job and sense of failure and find some meaning in his life. Once in Iraq our characters meet in a compound in a Baghdad suburb to build a theme park. Carlingford finds love amongst the dust and the madness but his loyalties are divided when Larry McKinley, the bombastic, six shooter toting U.S television reporter he is protecting is kidnapped. McKinley came to straighten out the 'liberal media's lies' about Iraq but instead finds himself chained up in the cellar of librarian-turned-unlikely-insurgent Samir. As Iraq descends into chaos, an unsafe second-hand roller coaster, to be renamed the Baghdad Express, is rising from the ashes, but not everyone is fooled by this low culture masquerading as freedom and progress.
When Carlingford finally rides the Baghdad Express he can see from its summit the truth about the war; the violence, incompetence, greed and deceit. The only thing keeping him in Iraq now is his love for CPA spin doctor Suria, but even his love is dying before the truth of what they have done to a country. The Baghdad Express is in turns bawdy, satirical, farcical and downright funny but ultimately, like the war itself, a story of tragedy and waste. Come ride The Baghdad Express - what will you see?
RW Greenacre is a writer of poems, two novels and short stories that have mostly languished on his computer's hard drive. That was fine with him until the Iraq war, then something had to give. During this period he was living and working in the US; he found that writing about the attitudes towards Iraq and the war was his way of making sense of it. He currently lives in Yorkshire and is working on his next book.