Rolling Stone: UMass Dartmouth Professor's book inspired Grammy Award-winning rock band's new album

Concept for Muse's "Drones" began with lead singer's reading of Dr. Brian Glyn Williams' Predators: The CIA's Drone War on al Qaeda

UMass Dartmouth History Professor Brian Glyn Williams' research related to Middle East terrorism has captured the attention of international relations experts, the U.S. military, and national media so he is accustomed to high profile recognition. 

But Dr. Williams was not prepared for the attention he is receiving since the front man for the Grammy Award-winning band Muse told Rolling Stone magazine that Dr. Williams' research inspired the band's new concept album, "Drones," which is scheduled for release in the U.S. today and will be the basis for a new global tour that is already selling out stadiums. Band members also credited Williams' book in interviews with the BBC and The Times of London. 

According to a May 8 Rolling Stone article written by Andy Greene, Muse lead singer Matt Bellamy credited Dr. Williams' book, Predators: The CIA's Drone War on al Qaeda with opening his eyes to issues surrounding the use of drones. Greene wrote: "A concept about the dehumanizing aspects of drone technology is, however, fresh territory for a rock band. Bellamy first got the idea about two years ago when he read the book Predators: The CIA's Drone War on al Qaeda by (UMass) Dartmouth professor Brian Glyn Williams." 

"I'm a big Muse fan," Williams said. "I was just catching up on some reading this weekend when I started my latest issue of Rolling Stone and came across the Muse article. I almost choked on my own excitement when I read the reference to my book. But I hope the music inspires young people to think critically about the issues of war and peace in our world." 

Dr. Williams has published extensively on issues related to terrorism and war in the Middle East. His book, Afghanistan Declassified, was originally published by the U.S. Army to provide troops with an overview of the culture, history and terrain of Afghanistan. Another book, The Last Warlord, details how a U.S. alliance with an Afghan warlord helped topple the Taliban. Dr. Williams is currently working on a new book on ISIS.


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