- Hardcover: 448 pages
- Publisher: Harvard University Press (February 28, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 067402690X
- ISBN-13: 978-0674026902
- Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,152,535 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Taliban and the Crisis of Afghanistan
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From Publishers Weekly
Observers in the 1990s marveled to see the Taliban bring order to a chaotic Afghanistan after the Soviet withdrawal. Admiration vanished as the Taliban proceeded to oppress men as well as women and massacre opponents. When they refused to surrender Osama bin Laden after 9/11, the U.S. invasion helped sweep them from power. Then dismissed as reactionary zealots, the Taliban have since been revived and are now steadily expanding their influence. Historian Crews and reporter Tarzi have assembled eight revealing essays on this widely reviled movement. The Taliban are ethnic Pashtuns who make up perhaps half the country's population and whose elite have traditionally ruled the country. This ragtag army of Islamic clerics and religious students presented itself as a superior alternative to ruling Pashtun elites and successfully manipulated tribal politics. Despite accusations of being a medieval throwback, the Taliban are Islamic counter modernists. Their use of mass spectacle, surveillance, the media and even their strict regulation of gender roles is consistent with other modern totalitarian movements. The authors' 58-page introduction adds additional clarity and context to Afghanistan's tortured history, making for an engrossing read that is more accessible than most academic collections. (Feb.)
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Historian Crews and reporter Tarzi have assembled eight revealing essays on this widely reviled movement...The authors' 58-page introduction adds additional clarity and context to Afghanistan's tortured history, making for an engrossing read. (Publishers Weekly 2007-11-19)
The Taliban and the Crisis of Afghanistan is of great value and highly welcome...Historically, successful counter-insurgency depends on striking political deals with parts of the insurgency. For that to happen, NATO needs to know its enemy. This volume makes a great contribution towards understanding the Taliban and the insurgency. (Timo Noetzel World Today 2008-04-01)
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There was nice chapters on why the movement gained ground so fast, and why the new government (and ISAF) has so many problems consolidating its power today. The last conclusion was not as original or insightful, however, as the rest of the book. And seemed to jump on the failures of both the new government and ISAF with out emphasizing, as the rest of the book did, the complexities and nuances of the Afghan situation.
This book along with Ahmed Rashid's book on the Taliban, are great to have.