Directorate S

Directorate S
Author: Steve Coll
Publsiher: Penguin
Total Pages: 784
Release: 2018-02-06
Genre: Political Science
ISBN: 9780525557302

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Winner of the 2018 National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction Longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award for Nonfiction From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Ghost Wars, the epic and enthralling story of America's intelligence, military, and diplomatic efforts to defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan since 9/11 Prior to 9/11, the United States had been carrying out small-scale covert operations in Afghanistan, ostensibly in cooperation, although often in direct opposition, with I.S.I., the Pakistani intelligence agency. While the US was trying to quell extremists, a highly secretive and compartmentalized wing of I.S.I., known as "Directorate S," was covertly training, arming, and seeking to legitimize the Taliban, in order to enlarge Pakistan's sphere of influence. After 9/11, when fifty-nine countries, led by the U. S., deployed troops or provided aid to Afghanistan in an effort to flush out the Taliban and Al Qaeda, the U.S. was set on an invisible slow-motion collision course with Pakistan. Today we know that the war in Afghanistan would falter badly because of military hubris at the highest levels of the Pentagon, the drain on resources and provocation in the Muslim world caused by the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, and corruption. But more than anything, as Coll makes painfully clear, the war in Afghanistan was doomed because of the failure of the United States to apprehend the motivations and intentions of I.S.I.'s "Directorate S". This was a swirling and shadowy struggle of historic proportions, which endured over a decade and across both the Bush and Obama administrations, involving multiple secret intelligence agencies, a litany of incongruous strategies and tactics, and dozens of players, including some of the most prominent military and political figures. A sprawling American tragedy, the war was an open clash of arms but also a covert melee of ideas, secrets, and subterranean violence. Coll excavates this grand battle, which took place away from the gaze of the American public. With unsurpassed expertise, original research, and attention to detail, he brings to life a narrative at once vast and intricate, local and global, propulsive and painstaking. This is the definitive explanation of how America came to be so badly ensnared in an elaborate, factional, and seemingly interminable conflict in South Asia. Nothing less than a forensic examination of the personal and political forces that shape world history, Directorate S is a complete masterpiece of both investigative and narrative journalism.

Ghost Wars

Ghost Wars
Author: Steve Coll
Publsiher: Penguin UK
Total Pages: 736
Release: 2005-03-03
Genre: History
ISBN: 9780141935799

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The news-breaking book that has sent schockwaves through the White House, Ghost Wars is the most accurate and revealing account yet of the CIA's secret involvement in al-Qaeada's evolution. Prize-winning journalist Steve Coll has spent years reporting from the Middle East, accessed previously classified government files and interviewed senior US officials and foreign spymasters. Here he gives the full inside story of the CIA's covert funding of an Islamic jihad against Soviet forces in Afghanistan, explores how this sowed the seeds of bn Laden's rise, traces how he built his global network and brings to life the dramatic battles within the US government over national security. Above all, he lays bare American intelligence's continual failure to grasp the rising threat of terrrorism in the years leading to 9/11 - and its devastating consequences.

On the Grand Trunk Road

On the Grand Trunk Road
Author: Steve Coll
Publsiher: Penguin
Total Pages: 352
Release: 2009-03-31
Genre: Travel
ISBN: 0143115197

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From the award-winning and bestselling author of Ghost Wars and Directorate S, a trek across a socially and politically damaged South Asia Bestselling author Steve Coll is one of the preeminent journalists of the twenty-first century. His last two books, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Ghost Wars and New York Times bestseller The Bin Ladens, have been praised for their creative insight and complex yet compelling narratives-and have put him on par with journalists such as the legendary Bob Woodward. Now, for the first time ever, the paperback edition of On the Grand Trunk Road is finally available, revised and updated with new material. Focusing on Coll's journeys in conflict-ridden India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Afghanistan as a bureau chief for The Washington Post, On the Grand Trunk Road reveals a little-seen area of the world where violence, corruption, and greed have had devastating effects on South Asians from all walks of life.

What We Won

What We Won
Author: Bruce Riedel
Publsiher: Brookings Institution Press
Total Pages: 189
Release: 2014-07-28
Genre: Political Science
ISBN: 9780815725855

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In February 1989, the CIA's chief in Islamabad famously cabled headquarters a simple message: "We Won." It was an understated coda to the most successful covert intelligence operation in American history. In What We Won, CIA and National Security Council veteran Bruce Riedel tells the story of America's secret war in Afghanistan and the defeat of the Soviet 40th Red Army in the war that proved to be the final battle of the cold war. He seeks to answer one simple question—why did this intelligence operation succeed so brilliantly? Riedel has the vantage point few others can offer: He was ensconced in the CIA's Operations Center when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan on Christmas Eve 1979. The invasion took the intelligence community by surprise. But the response, initiated by Jimmy Carter and accelerated by Ronald Reagan, was a masterful intelligence enterprise. Many books have been written about intelligence failures—from Pearl Harbor to 9/11. Much less has been written about how and why intelligence operations succeed. The answer is complex. It involves both the weaknesses and mistakes of America's enemies, as well as good judgment and strengths of the United States. Riedel introduces and explores the complex personalities pitted in the war—the Afghan communists, the Russians, the Afghan mujahedin, the Saudis, and the Pakistanis. And then there are the Americans—in this war, no Americans fought on the battlefield. The CIA did not send officers into Afghanistan to fight or even to train. In 1989, victory for the American side of the cold war seemed complete. Now we can see that a new era was also beginning in the Afghan war in the 1980s, the era of the global jihad. This book examines the lessons we can learn from this intelligence operation for the future and makes some observations on what came next in Afghanistan—and what is likely yet to come.

Private Empire

Private Empire
Author: Steve Coll
Publsiher: Penguin
Total Pages: 704
Release: 2012-05-01
Genre: Business & Economics
ISBN: 9781101572146

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From the award-winning and bestselling author of Ghost Wars and Directorate S, an “extraordinary” and “monumental” exposé of Big Oil (The Washington Post) Includes a profile of current Secretary of State and former chairman and chief executive of ExxonMobil, Rex Tillerson In this, the first hard-hitting examination of ExxonMobil—the largest and most powerful private corporation in the United States—Steve Coll reveals the true extent of its power. Private Empire pulls back the curtain, tracking the corporation’s recent history and its central role on the world stage, beginning with the Exxon Valdez accident in 1989 and leading to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. The action spans the globe—featuring kidnapping cases, civil wars, and high-stakes struggles at the Kremlin—and the narrative is driven by larger-than-life characters, including corporate legend Lee “Iron Ass” Raymond, ExxonMobil’s chief executive until 2005, and current chairman and chief executive Rex Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump's nomination for Secretary of State. A penetrating, news-breaking study, Private Empire is a defining portrait of Big Oil in American politics and foreign policy.

The Deal of the Century

The Deal of the Century
Author: Steve Coll
Publsiher: Open Road Media
Total Pages: 400
Release: 2017-06-13
Genre: Business & Economics
ISBN: 9781504045032

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A New York Times–bestselling author’s “superbly reported” account of the dismantling of the world’s largest corporation (The Washington Post). Written by the two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Ghost Wars and Private Empire, The Deal of the Century chronicles the decade-long war for control of AT&T. When the US Department of Justice brought an antitrust lawsuit against AT&T in 1974, the telecommunications giant held a monopoly on phone service throughout the country. Over the following decade, an army of lawyers, executives, politicians, and judges spent countless hours clashing over what amounted to the biggest corporate breakup in American history. From boardroom to courtroom, Steve Coll untangles the myriad threads of this complex and critical case and gives readers “an excellent behind-the-scenes look” at the human drama involved in the remaking of an entire industry (The Philadelphia Inquirer). Hailed by the New York Times Book Review as “rich, intricate and convincing,” The Deal of the Century is the definitive narrative of a momentous turning point in the way America does business.

Relentless Strike

Relentless Strike
Author: Sean Naylor
Publsiher: St. Martin's Press
Total Pages: 544
Release: 2015-09-01
Genre: History
ISBN: 9781466876224

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The New York Times Bestseller and Winner of the 2015 Army Historical Foundation Distinguished Writing Award for Unit History Since the attacks of September 11, one organization has been at the forefront of America's military response. Its efforts turned the tide against al-Qaida in Iraq, killed Bin Laden and Zarqawi, rescued Captain Phillips and captured Saddam Hussein. Its commander can direct cruise missile strikes from nuclear submarines and conduct special operations raids anywhere in the world. Relentless Strike tells the inside story of Joint Special Operations Command, the secret military organization that during the past decade has revolutionized counterterrorism, seamlessly fusing intelligence and operational skills to conduct missions that hit the headlines, and those that have remained in the shadows-until now. Because JSOC includes the military's most storied special operations units-Delta Force, SEAL Team 6, the 75th Ranger Regiment-as well as America's most secret aviation and intelligence units, this is their story, too. Relentless Strike reveals tension-drenched meetings in war rooms from the Pentagon to Iraq and special operations battles from the cabin of an MH-60 Black Hawk to the driver's seat of Delta Force's Pinzgauer vehicles as they approach their targets. Through exclusive interviews, reporter Sean Naylor uses his unique access to reveal how an organization designed in the 1980s for a very limited mission set transformed itself after 9/11 to become the military's premier weapon in the war against terrorism and how it continues to evolve today.

Faith Unity Discipline

Faith  Unity  Discipline
Author: Hein Kiessling
Publsiher: Oxford University Press
Total Pages: 135
Release: 2016-11-15
Genre: Political Science
ISBN: 9781849048637

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Established in the wake of the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947-8 by the Australian army officer Major-General Walter Cawthorne, then Deputy Chief of Staff in the Pakistan Army, Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) for years remained an under-developed and obscure agency. In 1979, the organisation's growing importance was felt during the Soviet war in Afghanistan , as it worked hand in glove with the CIA to support the mujahideen resistance, but its activities received little coverage in news media. Since that time, the ISI has projected its influence across the region in 1988 its involvement in Indian Kashmir came under increasing scrutiny, and by 1995 its mentoring of what became the Afghan Taliban was well attested. But it was the organisation's alleged links with Al Qaeda and the discovery of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, at the heart of Pakistan's military zone, that really threw it under the spotlight. These controversies and many more have dogged the ISI, including its role in Pakistan's testing of a nuclear weapon in 1998 and its links with A.Q. Khan. Offering fresh insights into the ISI as a domestic and international actor based on intimate knowledge of its inner workings and key individuals, this startlingly original book uncovers the hitherto shady world of Pakistan's secret service.

No Exit from Pakistan

No Exit from Pakistan
Author: Daniel S. Markey
Publsiher: Cambridge University Press
Total Pages: 262
Release: 2013-10-07
Genre: History
ISBN: 9781107045460

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This book tells the story of the tragic and often tormented relationship between the United States and Pakistan. Pakistan's internal troubles have already threatened U.S. security and international peace, and Pakistan's rapidly growing population, nuclear arsenal, and relationships with China and India will continue to force it upon America's geostrategic map in new and important ways over the coming decades. This book explores the main trends in Pakistani society that will help determine its future; traces the wellsprings of Pakistani anti-American sentiment through the history of U.S.-Pakistan relations from 1947 to 2001; assesses how Washington made and implemented policies regarding Pakistan since the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001; and analyzes how regional dynamics, especially the rise of China, will likely shape U.S.-Pakistan relations. It concludes with three options for future U.S. strategy, described as defensive insulation, military-first cooperation, and comprehensive cooperation. The book explains how Washington can prepare for the worst, aim for the best, and avoid past mistakes.

The TAKING OF GETTY OIL

The TAKING OF GETTY OIL
Author: Coll
Publsiher: Atheneum
Total Pages: 528
Release: 1987-08-31
Genre: Business & Economics
ISBN: STANFORD:36105038290560

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A true story of family, ambition, and greed in the most bitter and controversial takeover struggle in business history.

The Finish

The Finish
Author: Mark Bowden
Publsiher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic
Total Pages: 304
Release: 2012-10-16
Genre: History
ISBN: 9780802194107

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From Mark Bowden, the preeminent chronicler of our military and special forces, comes The Finish, a gripping account of the hunt for Osama bin Laden. With access to key sources, Bowden takes us inside the rooms where decisions were made and on the ground where the action unfolded. After masterminding the attacks of September 11, 2001, Osama bin Laden managed to vanish. Over the next ten years, as Bowden shows, America found that its war with al Qaeda—a scattered group of individuals who were almost impossible to track—demanded an innovative approach. Step by step, Bowden describes the development of a new tactical strategy to fight this war—the fusion of intel from various agencies and on-the-ground special ops. After thousands of special forces missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, the right weapon to go after bin Laden had finally evolved. By Spring 2011, intelligence pointed to a compound in Abbottabad; it was estimated that there was a 50/50 chance that Osama was there. Bowden shows how three strategies were mooted: a drone strike, a precision bombing, or an assault by Navy SEALs. In the end, the President had to make the final decision. It was time for the finish.

The American War in Afghanistan

The American War in Afghanistan
Author: Carter Malkasian
Publsiher: Oxford University Press
Total Pages: 561
Release: 2021-06-15
Genre: History
ISBN: 9780197550793

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A New York Times Notable Book The first authoritative history of American's longest war by one of the world's leading scholar-practitioners. The American war in Afghanistan, which began in 2001, is now the longest armed conflict in the nation's history. It is currently winding down, and American troops are likely to leave soon but only after a stay of nearly two decades. In The American War in Afghanistan, Carter Malkasian provides the first comprehensive history of the entire conflict. Malkasian is both a leading academic authority on the subject and an experienced practitioner, having spent nearly two years working in the Afghan countryside and going on to serve as the senior advisor to General Joseph Dunford, the US military commander in Afghanistan and later the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. Drawing from a deep well of local knowledge, understanding of Pashto, and review of primary source documents, Malkasian moves through the war's multiple phases: the 2001 invasion and after; the light American footprint during the 2003 Iraq invasion; the resurgence of the Taliban in 2006, the Obama-era surge, and the various resets in strategy and force allocations that occurred from 2011 onward, culminating in the 2018-2020 peace talks. Malkasian lived through much of it, and draws from his own experiences to provide a unique vantage point on the war. Today, the Taliban is the most powerful faction, and sees victory as probable. The ultimate outcome after America leaves is inherently unpredictable given the multitude of actors there, but one thing is sure: the war did not go as America had hoped. Although the al-Qa'eda leader Osama bin Laden was killed and no major attack on the American homeland was carried out after 2001, the United States was unable to end the violence or hand off the war to the Afghan authorities, which could not survive without US military backing. The American War in Afghanistan explains why the war had such a disappointing outcome. Wise and all-encompassing, The American War in Afghanistan provides a truly vivid portrait of the conflict in all of its phases that will remain the authoritative account for years to come.

Crossed Swords

Crossed Swords
Author: Shuja Nawaz
Publsiher: Oxford University Press, USA
Total Pages: 655
Release: 2008
Genre: History
ISBN: UOM:39015077666207

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Based on 30 years of research and analysis, this definitive book is a profound, multi-layered, and historical analysis of the nature and role of the Pakistan army in the country's polity as well as its turbulent relationship with the United States. Shuja Nawaz examines the army and Pakistan in both peace and war. Using many hitherto unpublished materials from the archives of the United States, the United Kingdom, and the General Headquarters of the Pakistan Army, as well as interviews with key military and political figures in Pakistan and the United States, he sheds light not only on the Pakistan Army and its US connections but also on Pakistan as a key Muslim country in one of the world's toughest neighborhoods. In doing so, he lays bare key facts about Pakistan's numerous wars with India and its many rounds of political musical chairs, as well as the Kargil conflict of 1999. He then draws lessons from this history that may help Pakistan end its wars within and create a stabler political entity.

Obama s Wars

Obama s Wars
Author: Bob Woodward
Publsiher: Simon and Schuster
Total Pages: 464
Release: 2011-05-03
Genre: History
ISBN: 9781439172506

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Shows President Obama making the critical decisions on the Afghanistan War, the secret war in Pakistan, and the worldwide fight against terrorism.

The Punishment of Virtue

The Punishment of Virtue
Author: Sarah Chayes
Publsiher: Univ. of Queensland Press
Total Pages: 386
Release: 2006
Genre: Afghanistan
ISBN: 0702235881

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