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The Punishment of Virtue by Sarah Chayes Book Resume:
An eyewitness account of the return to warlordism in Afghanistan after the TalibanSarah Chayes was an overseas correspondent for America's National Public Radio network (NPR) when war broke out in Afghanistan in 2001. Reporting from the Taliban's home base of Kandahar, Chayes gained access to leading members of the Taliban, Afghan politicians and warlords, US military and diplomatic troops. She saw the US government and armed forces unwittingly aiding the return to power of corrupt warlords, as well as the re-infiltration of bands of Taliban forces supported by US ally Pakistan. The Punishment of Virtue is not just a book about the Afghan conflict. It's an illuminating look at what happens when superpowers impose their might on countries they do not understand, without proper plans or knowledge of how to deal with post-conflict situations. Afghanistan, Kosovo, Iraq - we see it happen time and time again.
Life and Security in Rural Afghanistan by Neamatollah Nojumi,Dyan Mazurana,Elizabeth Stites Book Resume:
Despite the fall of the Taliban, Afghanistan remains a country in dire need of strong international support. This fascinating and clearly written book mines a rich and unique array of data, which was collected in rural areas of Afghanistan by an expert team of researchers, to analyze countrywide trends in the relationship between human security and livelihoods. The team's research and recommendations are published here for the first time.
The Taliban and the Crisis of Afghanistan by Robert D. Crews,Amin Tarzi Book Resume:
[This book] explores ... how has a seemingly anachronistic band of religious zealots managed to retain a tenacious foothold in the struggle for Afghanistan's future ... [It] investigates ... questions relating to the character of the Taliban, its evolution over time, and its capacity to affect the future of the region.--Dust jacket.
My Life with the Taliban by Abdul Salam Zaeef Book Resume:
This is the autobiography of Abdul Salam Zaeef, a senior former member of the Taliban. His memoirs, translated from Pashto, are more than just a personal account of his extraordinary life. My Life with the Taliban offers a counter-narrative to the standard accounts of Afghanistan since 1979. Zaeef describes growing up in rural poverty in Kandahar province. Both of his parents died at an early age, and the Russian invasion of 1979 forced him to flee to Pakistan. He started fighting the jihad in 1983, during which time he was associated with many major figures in the anti-Soviet resistance, including the current Taliban head Mullah Mohammad Omar. After the war Zaeef returned to a quiet life in a small village in Kandahar, but chaos soon overwhelmed Afghanistan as factional fighting erupted after the Russians pulled out. Disgusted by the lawlessness that ensued, Zaeef was one among the former mujahidin who were closely involved in the discussions that led to the emergence of the Taliban, in 1994. Zaeef then details his Taliban career as civil servant and minister who negotiated with foreign oil companies as well as with Afghanistan's own resistance leader, Ahmed Shah Massoud. Zaeef was ambassador to Pakistan at the time of the 9/11 attacks, and his account discusses the strange "phoney war" period before the US-led intervention toppled the Taliban. In early 2002 Zaeef was handed over to American forces in Pakistan, notwithstanding his diplomatic status, and spent four and a half years in prison (including several years in Guantanamo) before being released without having been tried or charged with any offence. My Life with the Taliban offers a personal and privileged insight into the rural Pashtun village communities that are the Taliban's bedrock. It helps to explain what drives men like Zaeef to take up arms against the foreigners who are foolish enough to invade his homeland.
The Taliban: Afghanistan's Most Lethal Insurgents by Mark Silinsky Book Resume:
Understand the complexities of the most lethal insurgent group of America's longest war—the Taliban. • Provides insights from an author with academic training in politics and economics as well as a 30-year defense intelligence community background, including serving as an Army analyst in Afghanistan • Presents information recently obtained under the Freedom of Information Act • Analyzes the tribal, religious, political, and international elements of the greater Taliban problem
Taliban: Oxford Bibliographies Online Research Guide by Oxford University Press Book Resume:
This ebook is a selective guide designed to help scholars and students of Islamic studies find reliable sources of information by directing them to the best available scholarly materials in whatever form or format they appear from books, chapters, and journal articles to online archives, electronic data sets, and blogs. Written by a leading international authority on the subject, the ebook provides bibliographic information supported by direct recommendations about which sources to consult and editorial commentary to make it clear how the cited sources are interrelated related. A reader will discover, for instance, the most reliable introductions and overviews to the topic, and the most important publications on various areas of scholarly interest within this topic. In Islamic studies, as in other disciplines, researchers at all levels are drowning in potentially useful scholarly information, and this guide has been created as a tool for cutting through that material to find the exact source you need. This ebook is a static version of an article from Oxford Bibliographies Online: Islamic Studies, a dynamic, continuously updated, online resource designed to provide authoritative guidance through scholarship and other materials relevant to the study of the Islamic religion and Muslim cultures. Oxford Bibliographies Online covers most subject disciplines within the social science and humanities, for more information visit www.aboutobo.com.
The United States and the Taliban before and after 9/11 by Jonathan Cristol Book Resume:
This book tells the story of the United States’ relationship with the Taliban from the start of the Taliban movement until its retreat from Kabul in the face of the US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. The US and the Taliban held countless meetings, but could never come to a workable arrangement, and this book examines both why diplomatic recognition was so important to the Taliban government and why the US refused to recognize it. It presents a concise, readable, and interesting perspective on US/Taliban relations from the fall of Kabul in 1996 until the fall of Kabul in 2001.
Talibanistan by Peter Bergen,Katherine Tiedemann Book Resume:
The longest war the United States has ever fought is the ongoing war in Afghanistan. But when we speak of "Afghanistan," we really mean a conflict that straddles the border with Pakistan--and the reality of Islamic militancy on that border is enormously complicated. In Talibanistan, an unparalleled group of experts offer a nuanced understanding of this critical region. Edited by Peter Bergen, author of the bestselling books The Longest War and The Osama Bin Laden I Know, and Katherine Tiedemann, these essays examine in detail the embattled territory from Kandahar in Afghanistan to Pakistan's Northwest Frontier Province and Federally Administered Tribal Areas. They pull apart the distinctions between the Taliban and al Qaeda--and the fractures within each movement; assess the effectiveness of American and Pakistani counterinsurgency campaigns; and explore the pipeline of militants into and out of the war zone. Throughout, these scrupulously researched studies challenge convenient orthodoxies. Counterterrorism expert Brian Fishman criticizes the customary distinction between an Afghan and Pakistani Taliban as being too neat to describe their fragmented reality. Hassan Abbas paints a subtle portrait of the political and religious forces shaping the insurgency in the Northwest Frontier Province, uncovering poor governance, economic distress, and resentment of foreign troops in nearby Afghanistan. And Peter Bergen and Katherine Tiedemann try to identify the real numbers of drone strikes and victims, both militants and civilians, while disputing claims for their strategic effectiveness. These and other essays provide profound new insight into this troubled region. They are required reading for anyone seeking a fresh understanding of a central strategic challenge facing the United States today.
Al Qaeda’s Global Crisis by V. G. Julie Rajan Book Resume:
This book focuses on the crises facing Al Qaeda and how the mass killing of Muslims is challenging its credibility as a leader among Islamist jihadist organizations. The book argues that these crises are directly related to Al Qaeda’s affiliation with the extreme violence employed against Muslims in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan in the decade since 9/11. Al Qaeda’s public and private responses to this violence differ greatly. While in public Al Qaeda has justified those attacks declaring that, for the establishment of a state of ‘true believers’, they are a necessary evil, in private Al Qaeda has been advising its local affiliates to refrain from killing Muslims. To better understand the crises facing Al Qaeda, the book explores the development of Central Al Qaeda’s complex relationship with radical (mis)appropriations and manifestations of takfir, which allows one Muslim to declare another an unbeliever, and its unique relationship with each of its affiliates in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The author then goes on to consider how the prominence of takfir is contributing to the deteriorating security in those countries and how this is affecting Al Qaeda’s credibility as an Islamist terror organization. The book concludes by considering the long-term viability of Al Qaeda and how its demise could allow the rise of the even more radical, violent Islamic State and the implications this has for the future security of the Middle East, North Africa and Central/South Asia. This book will be of much interest to students of political violence and terrorism, Islamism, global security and IR.
The Implacable Taliban, Repeating History in Afghanistan by E N Rammohan Book Resume:
After eight years of fighting, the Afghan people have nothing to see that is even slightly better than in Nov 2001. Only the fighting is continuing endlessly. The book attempt to exercise the history and Ethnicity, the rise of Taliban, the present state and future of Afghanistan.
Afghanistan from the Cold War through the War on Terror by Barnett R. Rubin Book Resume:
One of our foremost authorities on modern Afghanistan, Barnett R. Rubin has dedicated much of his career to the study of this remote mountain country. He served as a special advisor to the late Ambassador Richard Holbrooke during his final mission to the region and still serves the Obama administration under Holbrooke's successor, Ambassador Marc Grossman. Now Rubin distills his unmatched knowledge of Afghanistan in this invaluable book. He shows how the Taliban arose in resistance to warlords some of whom who were raping and plundering with impunity in the vacuum of authority left by the collapse of the Afghan state after the Soviet withdrawal. The Taliban built on a centuries-old tradition of local leadership by students and teachers at independent, rural madrasas--networks that had been marginalized by the state-building royal regime that was itself destroyed by the Soviets and radicalized by the resistance to the invasion. He examines the arrival of Arab Islamists, the missed opportunities after the American-led intervention, the role of Pakistan, and the challenges of reconstruction. Rubin provides first-hand accounts of the bargaining at both the Bonn Talks of 2001 and the Afghan Constitutional Loya Jirga of 2003-2004, in both of which he participated as a UN advisor. Throughout, he discusses the significance of ethnic rivalries, the drug trade, human rights, state-building, US strategic choices, and international organizations, analyzing the missteps in these areas taken by the international community since 2001. The book covers events till the start of the Obama administration, and the final chapters provide an inside look at some of the thinking that is shaping today's policy debates inside the administration. Authoritative, nuanced, and sweeping in scope, Afghanistan in the Post-Cold War Era provides deep insight into the greatest foreign policy challenge facing America today.
United States Congressional Serial Set, Serial No. 14709, House Documents No. 68-103 by United States. Congress. House of Representatives Book Resume:
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Ghosts of Afghanistan by Jonathan Steele Book Resume:
“Fine modern history . . . [Steele] demolishes some Western myths about Afghanistan that betray short memories and government spin.” —The Economist A masterful blend of graphic reporting, illuminating interviews, and insightful analysis. Ghosts of Afghanistan is the first account of Afghanistan’s turbulent recent history by an independent eyewitness. Jonathan Steele, an award-winning journalist and commentator, has covered the country since his first visit there as a reporter in 1981. In Ghosts of Afghanistan, he turns a spotlight on the numerous myths about Afghanistan that have bedeviled foreign policy-makers and driven them to repeat earlier mistakes. Steele has conducted numerous interviews with ordinary Afghans, two of the country’s Communist presidents, senior Soviet occupation officials, as well as Taliban leaders, Western diplomats, NATO advisers, and United Nations negotiators. Steele cautions that military victory will elude the West just as it eluded the Kremlin. Showing how and why Soviet efforts to negotiate an end to the war came to nothing, he explains how negotiations today could put a stop to the tragedies of civil war and foreign intervention that have afflicted Afghanistan for three decades. “In this original look at the West’s obsession with Afghanistan the ghosts include, of course, the inevitable innocents who fall in war but also the public myths, official lies and inconvenient truths that lie behind so much of the bloodshed there.” —Seymour Hersh, The New Yorker “Steele has covered events in Afghanistan for many years, and he skewers with palpable glee the myths and half-truths that are peddled by politicians, generals, official spokesmen, and too many commentators.” —The Observer
The Missing Martyrs by Charles Kurzman Book Resume:
Why are there so few Muslim terrorists? With more than a billion Muslims in the world--many of whom supposedly hate the West and ardently desire martyrdom--why don't we see terrorist attacks every day? Where are the missing martyrs? In this startlingly counterintuitive book, a leading authority on Islamic movements demonstrates that terrorist groups are thoroughly marginal in the Muslim world. Charles Kurzman draws on government sources, public opinion surveys, election results, and in-depth interviews with Muslims in the Middle East and around the world. He finds that young Muslims are indeed angry with what they see as imperialism--and especially at Western support for local dictatorships. But revolutionary Islamists have failed to reach them, as can be seen from the terrorists' own websites and publications, which constantly bemoan the dearth of willing recruits. Kurzman notes that it takes only a small cadre of committed killers to wreak unspeakable havoc. But that very fact underscores his point. As easy as terrorism is to commit, few Muslims turn to violence. Out of 140,000 murders in the United States since 9/11, Islamist terrorists have killed at most three dozen people. Of the 150,000 people who die each day, worldwide, Islamist militants account for fewer than fifty fatalities--and only ten per day outside of the hotspots of Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan. The real bulwark against Islamist violence, Kurzman finds, is Muslims themselves, who reject both the goals of the terrorists and their bloody means. With each bombing, the terrorists lose support among Muslims. Incisive and authoritative, The Missing Martyrs provides much-needed corrective to deep-seated and destructive misconceptions about Muslims and the Islamic world. The threat of Islamist terrorism is real, Kurzman shows, but its dimensions are, so far, tightly confined.