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Leaving without Losing: The War on Terror after Iraq and Afghanistan Hardcover – March 14, 2012
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"As the U.S. searches for a way forward, Katz’s largely objective and thoughtful analysis offers much to consider."(Publishers Weekly)
"A fine pick for any military or political science holding."(Midwest Book Review)
"Katz offers a strong, cogent argument."(Choice)
"A model of its kind."(Anthony Smith New Zealand International Review)
"This slender volume is packed with many insights. A collection of short chapters, some not much longer than op-eds, reveals author Mark Katz's wisdom and prudence when it comes to the use of military power, and the need for patience and persistence when pursuing long-term objectives... His straightforward prose engages the reader in what often feels like a quiet one-on-one conversation... The book is suffused with a tone of welcome optimism, but not naïveté."(Christopher Preble Middle East Policy)
"A well-written and well-organized presentation of possibilities and angles that counterterrorism policy makers and analysts should consider."(World Future Review)
"Mark Katz makes a concise and readable argument for why withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan will serve to weaken the forces of radical Islam, and along the way provides a trenchant critique of the uses to which American power has been put over the past decade."(Francis Fukuyama, Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University)
"In this lucid and articulate book, Mark Katz makes the counter-intuitive argument that the United States might actually ‘win’ the war on terror by extricating itself from conflicts in the Muslim world. Drawing on the history of previous ideological movements, Katz suggests that radical Islamic groups― without the benefit of a unifying external enemy―will overreach, fight among themselves, alienate their followers and even reach out to the United States, as have former U.S. adversaries China and Vietnam. This book should be required reading for all students of foreign policy and especially U.S. presidential candidates"(Barbara Slavin, senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and author of Bitter Friends, Bosom Enemies: Iran, the U.S. and the Twisted Path to Confrontation)
"A lucid and highly informative guide to thinking about how to confront violent extremism in the Middle East and South Asia. The many insights Mark Katz draws from the Cold War experience provide a sound basis for navigating successfully through the perplexing problems related to international terrorism."(Paul R. Pillar, former deputy chief, CIA Counterterrorist Center)
"Emotions about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the continued struggle against radical Islam still run high. Mark Katz's new book Leaving without Losing provides exactly the balanced and realistic analysis necessary to understand the complex nature of modern terrorism and the unique challenges we face in confronting it. A first class study."(Geoffrey Kemp, director of Regional Security Programs, the Center for the National Interest)
From the Back Cover
Drawing lessons from the Cold War, Mark N. Katz makes the case that, rather than signaling the decline of American power and influence, the removal of military forces from Afghanistan and Iraq puts the U.S. in a better position to counter the forces of radical Islam. He explains that, since both wars will likely remain intractable, for Washington to remain heavily involved in either is counter-productive. Katz argues that looking to its Cold War experience will help the U.S. find better strategies for employing America’s scarce resources to deal with its adversaries now. Although leaving Afghanistan and Iraq may appear to be a victory for America’s opponents in the short term―as was the case when the U.S. withdrew from Indochina―the larger battle with militant Islam can be won only by refocusing foreign and military policy away from these two quagmires.
"Katz offers a strong, cogent argument."―Choice
"This slender volume is packed with many insights. A collection of short chapters, some not much longer than op-eds, reveals author Mark Katz's wisdom and prudence when it comes to the use of military power and the need for patience and persistence when pursuing long-term objectives... His straightforward prose engages the reader in what often feels like a quiet one-on-one conversation... The book is suffused with a tone of welcome optimism, but not naïveté."―Christopher Preble, Middle East Policy
"As the U.S. searches for a way forward, Katz’s largely objective and thoughtful analysis offers much to consider."―Publishers Weekly
"Katz makes a concise and readable argument for why withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan will serve to weaken the forces of radical Islam, and along the way provides a trenchant critique of the uses to which American power has been put over the past decade."―Francis Fukuyama, Stanford University
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My first idea of what to call this review was "how to not read a book". While it's occasionally interesting to see what the Israel lobby is putting out--whether it's Chiapas or Darfur as distractions, Syria: Monster-at-bay as the trigger for regional war at the moment if Israel decides it wants one, or yet another pathetic look at the pathetic Palestinians if Israel decides, for the moment, just to expel them rather than kill them--but in general the idea that you should listen to the enemy to see what it will come up with next doesn't apply to Israel because Israel is the archetype of the self-limiting problem. It doesn't need any management because it has absolutely nowhere to go. Reading its PR output as a means to pick up peace feelers underestimates its determination, on the other hand.
So, an occasional dip into America Abroad (or public broadcasting in general), or a glance at the NYT front page, is enough to remind oneself that Israel is still pumping out the guff, still clueless. It is occasionally slightly pleasing to learn what salient of public opinion has been coopted by the Israel lobby as a badge of loyalty. Anti-China sentiments are a recent favorite which you might not generally have expected. It apparently comes from China dealing with Sudan, which, as a front-line state has long been in Israel's sights, which explains the Darfur distortion as an element of Israeli public diplomacy. But it might emerge here currently that "pink slime" will become a means for the thoughtful public to express its solidarity with the racist genocidal Jewish state without risking itself too much (in proper Nietzschean bourgeois fashion).
What makes Israel a self-limiting problem? Look at how its PR treats Egypt currently, the Egyptian parliament, the two-thirds of whose members (in the lower house, at least) are either Muslim Brotherhood or Salafi, the recent utterance from that body referring to Israel as "the enemies", etc. The Israel lobby's PR ignores the whole problem, like Himmler staring out at a vast sea of Soviet tanks (in some day dream) and saying to his faithful first adjutant, Joachim Peiper, "Look here, Jochen, take a platoon and go deal with that, will you?" Actually that would have been Peiper's nightmare, and, next morning, Peiper would have taken his mechanized battalion and tried to carry out his master's orders.