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Massoud: An Intimate Portrait of the Legendary Afghan Leader Paperback – March 1, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
But this is really a collection of stories, blurbs, and remembrances of Massoud that tell what he was like as a man and leader through the eyes of others. It paints Massoud as an intuitively excellent military strategist and a deeply humble and spiritual leader. It clearly puts Massoud on a very high pedestal as a Sufi like Islamic leader, not only humble but with an ability to deeply affect others on a spiritual level. He was also forward thinking as a believer in rights for women (such as having an education and career), tolerant of the religion of others, and kind (or at least not brutal) to his enemies. He contradictorily abhorred violence yet had to embrace it given the circumstances.
His failures in an impossible situation once the Soviets were thrown out of Afghanistan as Defense Minister under a shaky regime are probably the best sections of the book, as they allow us to see Massoud from a different, less critical angle, that is no doubt as true, if not more so, than those of his critics.
The author makes it very clear that this is not a critical biography of Massoud but look at this life through eyes of his close family, friends, and others that knew him very well. She does the reader a service by this (even though the disclaimer is in obscure place).Read more ›
Marcela Grad has created a kaleidoscopic portrait from the experiences, perceptions, emotions, adventures and appreciations of many different and diverse people who knew Massoud or who had their lives changed in one way or another by him, by his actions, his influence, his spirit, his soul.
It is a book of discovery, full of riches, surprises, delights, deep feelings and much information. Like a magic door allowing the reader to enter into the many faceted world of the "Mysterious Orient" and to do this through the life of a contemporary man of Afghanistan, a man of its history, its culture and its spirit.
The picture that emerges from all of the testimonials about Massoud is that of a remarkable human being who in the face of adversity and the horrors of war was able to maintain his humanity.
In these very troubled times in Afghanistan where the US is fighting the Taliban, Al Quaida and other enemies of the Afghan people and committed to rebuilding the country, this book will help readers put a face on those we are seeking to help. This book should be required reading for all decision makers in Washington D.C., those who are sent to fight in Afghanistan and those in the media who want to understand that country and the "heart" of its people.
If we are to be more that than another occupier of Afghanistan, we must find more leaders like Massoud or Afghan leaders who have taken Massoud's life as an example to emulate and encourage them to become our partners in securing and rebuilding their country. To understand what is at stake for the people of Afghanistan, who have been in a constant state of war for 35 years, we must understand the life of Massoud, and what his life meant to them. Ms. Grad's book helps accomplish this task.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is a treasure. Truly an intimate portrait of someone who was not only a courageous defender of freedom but he was also a magnificent Light in a land so weary from war.Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
Great stories about a great man. While I have been searching for a more biographical account of Massoud, this collection of tales and events offers an interesting perspective on a... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Pat
Thank you very much for this book! It contains great collection of stories about Ahmad Shah Massoud and it really helps to understand him better as a person, leader and warrior. Read morePublished on December 19, 2013 by Valeria
For people who wish to find out more about the famous Afghan resistance leader, as a human being. This is a must read, which told of the man behind the fighter. Read morePublished on May 8, 2013 by Annie Chetwynd
The writer shows a very wide image of Afganistan and all the warriors in the Land. Their struggle to have their country clean of intruders.Published on February 19, 2013 by Marieta Esser
I've been living in Kabul for nearly a year now, and wanted to gain some insight into the man whose image graces every niche in this city. Read morePublished on September 9, 2012 by Paul
There remains ample evidence to suggest that Ahmad Shah Massoud has been miscast in Ms Grad's book. As noted journalist and author Eric S. Read morePublished on November 2, 2010 by Bruce G. Richardson
A man that kept Afghanistan united and fought for his nation's freedom will never be forgotten. 8 years after his death, he has become more popular then ever. Read morePublished on October 2, 2009 by Fahim Ahmad