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The Case for Withdrawal from Afghanistan

Author: Nick Turse
Publisher: Verso Books
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In a collection of essays that argue against President Obama's policy in Afghanistan, leading analysts examine the current U.S. strategy and offer sobering conclusions about its parallels to the British and Soviet wars in the region and reasons why it is so unlikely to succeed. Original.


Hearts and Minds

Author: Hannah Gurman
Publisher: The New Press
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The first book of its kind, Hearts and Minds is a scathing response to the grand narrative of U.S. counterinsurgency, in which warfare is defined not by military might alone but by winning the "hearts and minds" of civilians. Dormant as a tactic since the days of the Vietnam War, in 2006 the U.S. Army drafted a new field manual heralding the resurrection of counterinsurgency as a primary military engagement strategy; counterinsurgency campaigns followed in Iraq and Afghanistan, despite the fact that counterinsurgency had utterly failed to account for the actual lived experiences of the people whose hearts and minds America had sought to win. Drawing on leading thinkers in the field and using key examples from Malaya, the Philippines, Vietnam, El Salvador, Iraq, and Afghanistan, Hearts and Minds brings a long-overdue focus on the many civilians caught up in these conflicts. Both urgent and timely, this important book challenges the idea of a neat divide between insurgents and the populations from which they emerge—and should be required reading for anyone engaged in the most important contemporary debates over U.S. military policy.


Ghosts of Afghanistan

Author: Jonathan Steele
Publisher: Catapult
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“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


Call for Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan

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Afghanistan and Its Neighbors after the NATO Withdrawal

Author: Amin Saikal
Publisher: Lexington Books
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This study examines regional and international security dynamics related to Afghanistan and focuses on the role of foreign troops and the potential effects of a final withdrawal.


Withdrawing Under Fire

Author: Joshua L. Gleis
Publisher: Potomac Books, Inc.
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The post-9/11 world has witnessed a rebirth of irregular and asymmetrical warfare, which, in turn, has led to an increase in conflicts between conventional armies and non-state armed groups. In their haste to respond to the threat from insurgencies, nations often fail to plan effectively not only for combat operations but also for withdrawal, which is inevitable, win or lose. In order to answer the question of how to withdraw from engagement with an insurgency, Gleis examines how insurgencies are conducted and what, if anything, is unique about an Islamist insurgency. He then proposes ways to combat these groups successfully and to disentangle one’s military forces from the war once strategic objectives have been met--or once it is clear that they cannot be. Because this type of warfare is dynamic and ever-changing, this book is not meant to suggest a set of cookie-cutter solutions for how to withdraw from insurgencies. Rather, the author analyzes six counterinsurgency operations that have taken place in the past, with the intention of gleaning from them as many lessons as possible to better prepare for future withdrawals.The literature on how wars end has failed to explore irregular warfare.This much needed reexamination serves as an indispensable starting point.


Russia Direct Guidebook to Russian Foreign Policy

Author: Russia Direct
Publisher: Russia Beyond The Headlines
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The Russia Direct Guidebook to Russian Foreign Policy, including work by prominent international experts, looks back at some of the defining moments in Moscow’s relations with the world over the past year and analyzes the challenges ahead. From the build-up and execution of the Sochi Olympics to the developments in U.S.-Russia nuclear cooperation, we’ve taken a nuanced look into some of the most critical issues that have had an effect on Russia’s relationship with other countries. This guide compiles five quarterly reports published by Russia Direct from 2013 to 2014 which delve into the changing geopolitical conditions of the time: "Russian Soft Power 2.0" "Afghan Endgame: What Comes Next" "Sochi: Going for the Olympic Gold" "Megatons to Megawatts Program: Hard Lessons and New Opportunities for US-Russian Nuclear cooperation" "From Brain Drain to Brain Gain" The issues covered in this guidebook span a range of topics: how Russia is projecting its military power abroad in conflict zones such as Afghanistan, how it copes with the problem of global terrorism along its own borders, how it manages its economic development by trying to reverse the brain drain, and how Moscow is pivoting in its approach to soft power. Enhance your understanding of Russia by reading expert analysis from the likes of: Thomas Neff of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Ivan Timofeev of the Russian International Affairs Council, George Joffé of the University of Cambridge – just to name a few. The Russia Direct Guidebook to Russian Foreign Policy, including work by prominent international experts, looks back at some of the defining moments in Moscow’s relations with the world over the past year and analyzes the challenges ahead. From the build-up and execution of the Sochi Olympics to the developments in U.S.-Russia nuclear cooperation, we’ve taken a nuanced look into some of the most critical issues that have had an effect on Russia’s relationship with other countries. This guide compiles five quarterly reports published by Russia Direct from 2013 to 2014 which delve into the changing geopolitical conditions of the time: "Russian Soft Power 2.0" "Afghan Endgame: What Comes Next" "Sochi: Going for the Olympic Gold" "Megatons to Megawatts Program: Hard Lessons and New Opportunities for US-Russian Nuclear cooperation" "From Brain Drain to Brain Gain" The issues covered in this guidebook span a range of topics: how Russia is projecting its military power abroad in conflict zones such as Afghanistan, how it copes with the problem of global terrorism along its own borders, how it manages its economic development by trying to reverse the brain drain, and how Moscow is pivoting in its approach to soft power. Enhance your understanding of Russia by reading expert analysis from the likes of: Thomas Neff of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Ivan Timofeev of the Russian International Affairs Council, George Joffé of the University of Cambridge – just to name a few. The Russia Direct Guidebook to Russian Foreign Policy includes maps, infographics, charts and details you can’t get anywhere else.


The Case for Socialism Updated Edition

Author: Alan Maass
Publisher: Haymarket Books
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Is socialism an impossible, discredited dream or the only realistic path for human survival? If you're not sure of the answer, or are just curious about what the Left really believes in, you need to read Maass. He's the Tom Paine of the contemporary American left." --Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums "This is a vivid, fluent and rare book about socialism for those uninterested in tracts and excited by new prospects." --John Pilger, author of Freedom Next Time Growing numbers of people are disgusted by the disaster of poverty, war, oppression, and environmental destruction caused by global capitalism. But is there an alternative? Author Alan Maass argues that socialism—a democratically planned economy based on workers’ control—is rational, necessary, and possible. With an afterword by Howard Zinn. Alan Maass is the editor of the website SocialistWorker.org.


The War for Afghanistan A Very Brief History

Author: Thomas Barfield
Publisher: Princeton University Press
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When it invaded Afghanistan in 2001, the United States sought to do something previous foreign powers had never attempted: to create an Afghani state where none existed. More than a decade on, the new regime in Kabul remains plagued by illegitimacy and ineffectiveness. What happened? As Thomas Barfield shows, the history of previous efforts to build governments in Afghanistan does much to explain the difficulties besetting this newest experiment. Princeton Shorts are brief selections taken from influential Princeton University Press books and produced exclusively in ebook format. Providing unmatched insight into important contemporary issues or timeless passages from classic works of the past, Princeton Shorts enable you to be an instant expert in a world where information is everywhere but quality is at a premium.


The Afghanistan Wars

Author: William Maley
Publisher: Macmillan International Higher Education
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A whole generation has grown up in Afghanistan knowing little but the ravages of war. The dramatic overthrow of the Taliban regime in 2001 was simply one event in a series of interrelated struggles which have blighted ordinary people's lives over the last three decades, and which continue to interfere with reconciliation and reconstruction. This new edition of The Afghanistan Wars provides a meticulously-documented history of these successive waves of conflict. It explores in detail: • the roots of Afghanistan's slide into disorder in the late 1970s • how the Soviet Union came to the rescue of unworthy clients and was then sucked into a quagmire • the frightening consequences of state breakdown and self-interested meddling by Afghanistan's neighbours in the period after communist rule collapsed • the rise and fall of the Taliban regime. Thoroughly revised in the light of the latest research, the second edition also features a new final chapter which examines post-Taliban Afghanistan, bringing the story up to the present day and mounting a strong case for continuing support for this troubled country.