- Hardcover: 404 pages
- Publisher: CRC Press; 1 edition (December 18, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9781498706896
- ISBN-13: 978-1498706896
- ASIN: 1498706894
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1 x 9.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,736,106 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Terrorists of Iraq: Inside the Strategy and Tactics of the Iraq Insurgency 2003-2014, Second Edition 1st Edition
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"... if you took every member of United States Congress and House of Representatives and wrote their collected wisdom on Iraq, it's unlikely they could equal the astuteness of even a single chapter of author Malcolm W. Nance in The Terrorists of Iraq: Inside the Strategy and Tactics of the Iraq Insurgency 2003-2014. It's Nance's overwhelming real-world experiential knowledge of the subject, language, culture, tribal affiliations, and more which make this the overwhelming definitive book on the subject."
―Book review by Ben Rothke, Information Security Professional, writing on Slashdot.org
"The second edition of The Terrorists of Iraq comes at a critical time when the world is trying to understand ISIS, its origins, and its place among multiple actors in Iraq. This book is instantly the definitive source on ISIS and Nance demonstrations the often forgotten fact that ISIS has been there all along, evolving with the shifting dynamics in the theater of battle, within the insurgency and in the region. The Terrorists of Iraq remains an essential and well-researched guide for anyone interested in understanding or addressing this horrific period in global history."
―Adam Hinds, former political advisor, United Nations Iraq
"Mandatory reading for personal survival and national security―from the battlefields to the halls of Congress."
―Jay R. Stanka, Managing Editor HUMANI Magazine and U.S. Army Special Forces veteran
"A new and updated edition of Malcolm Nance’s detailed and insightful book, The Terrorists of Iraq, Second Edition, is most welcome news. His inclusion of a new chapter on ISIS and its violent origins in the disintegrating state of Iraq and bloody drive to become a 21st century Caliphate is masterful. He knows the players, their vicious infighting, and their brutal methods like few others. To read his analysis is to understand the make-up and the real threat posed by these latest claimants to forming a Caliphate in these divided lands."
―Peter Earnst, founding Executive Director of the International Spy Museum and a 35 year veteran of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
'This book is easy to read, vivid, and offers enormous precious experience and empirical data which make it attractive to policy-makers, scholars, and students'.--Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression
About the Author
Malcolm W. Nance is a counterterrorism and intelligence consultant for the US Special Operations, Homeland Security, and Intelligence agencies, with more than 33 years of experience in combatting radical extremism. An honorably retired Arabic-speaking US Navy intelligence collections operator, field interrogator, and survival, evasion, resistance, and escape specialist, he spent two decades on clandestine antiterrorism and counterterrorism intelligence operations in the Middle East, North Africa, the Balkans, South Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa in support of the Special Operations and Intelligence Community. He is currently executive director of the Terror Asymmetrics Project on Strategy, Tactics, and Radical Ideologies (TAPSTRI), Hudson, New York, USA.
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Im still looking forward to reading it as Mr. Nance is an excellent analyst of the counter-terrorism field.
I especially had issues with the size of each terrorist group depicted by the author - I did not see any true evidence to support his claims
Finally, the numerous editing / mispellings throughout the book gives an extremely poor impression - the most poorly edited book that I have ever read.
Using that metaphor, if you took every member of United States Congress and House of Representatives and wrote their collected wisdom on Iraq, it’s unlikely they could equal the astuteness of even a single chapter of author Malcolm W. Nance in The Terrorists of Iraq: Inside the Strategy and Tactics of the Iraq Insurgency 2003-2014. It’s Nance’s overwhelming read-world experiential knowledge of the subject, language, culture, tribal affiliations and more which make this the overwhelming definitive book on the subject.
Nance is a career intelligence officer, combat veteran, author, scholar and media commentator on international terrorism, intelligence, insurgency and torture. In 2014 he became the executive director of the counter-ideology think tank the Terror Asymmetrics Project on Strategy, Tactics and Radical Ideologies (TAPSTRI).
While it’s debatable if most members of Congress could elucidate the difference between the Sunnis and Shiites; Nance knows all of the players in depth. He understands and describes who there are, what they are and how their methods work. His unique analysis provides an in-depth understanding of who these groups are and what they are fighting about.
The book details how the many terror groups formed to create the Iraqi insurgency that led to the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Nance places the blame on the Bush administration’s 2003 invasion of Iraq that lead to the destabilization of the country. While the war was based on faulty evidence, the insurgency was created by myriad mistakes, misperceptions and miscalculations by L. Paul Bremer, who lead the occupational authority of Iraq during the war.
A common theme Nance makes throughout the book is that the US ignored history and didn’t learn the lessons of the Iraqi revolt against the British in 1920 or the events of the Vietnam War. Those lessons being that insurgents and foreign terrorist operations were much more effective despite the enormous manpower and firepower that the US troops brought to bear in Iraq.
Nance details how much of the coalition’s strategy was based on wishful thinking. He writes that Washington never had a realistic plan for post-war Iraq. Only Saddam Hussein, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and the ex-Ba’athists has a definitive strategy for what to do in post-war Iraq. Unlike the Americans, they mobilized the right resources and persons for the job, with devastating and horrifying effects.
The book writes of the utterly depravity and evil nature of Saddam Hussein and his sons Uday and Qusay. Following the first Gulf War. Qusay revealed a brutality to match both his father’s and brother’s. The Hussein family was responsible for the death and torture of hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraq’s and others. All of this while the United Nations make threats but took little action to stop the killing. Hussein was repeatedly deceptive and duplicitous against the naïve UN. The UN was without power and did nothing, while simultaneously being clueless to how incompetent they were.
The insurgency was and is made up of countless different groups. Some of these groups number under a hundred members, others in the tens of thousands. Nance details who these groups are, their makeup and leadership structure and what they hope to achieve.
Nance quotes Donald Rumsfeld and General Tommy Franks who described the insurgency as dead-enders; namely small groups dedicated to Hussein, and not large military formations or networks of attackers. Yet the reality was that Hussein started creating the insurgency in the months before the invasion. Rather than being a bunch of dead-enders, the insurgency was a group that was highly organized, heavily armed, with near unlimited funds based on looting hundreds of millions of dollars.
From a reporting perspective, the book details how the US government made the same mistakes in Iraq as it did in Vietnam. Underreporting US casualties, over reporting enemy losses, and obfuscating how terrible the situation on the ground was.
The term IED (improvised explosive device) became part of the vernacular during the Iraq War. The book details how the insurgency used the many different types of IED’s (including human-based IED) at specific times and places for their political and propaganda goals.
Nance writes that the biggest gift the US gave to Osama bin Laden was to invade Iraq. The invasion provided him with an opportunity for inspirational jihad. bin Laden envisioned a holy war with heroic men fights against desperate odds in the heart of historic Islam, just like the first battles of the Prophet Mohammed.
Nance spends a few chapters dealing with ISIS and how it came to be. There are multiple iterations of the group, which developed as the Iraq mess evolved.
The book closes with a disheartening overview of the current state. Nance writes that the Middle East is in far more danger from destabilizing collapse of states due to the effects of the American invasion today than it has ever been.
As ISIS is currently the dominant force in Iraq; Nance states that he fears ISIS will have no intention of going back to being a small insurgent group. It will attempt to consolidate captured terrain. It will offer the Sunni a chance to rule under it at the technocrat level, but that is when the pogroms will start.
In the end, Nance writes, the Islamic caliphate will attempt and fail at creating a popular Iraqi-Syrian nation out of stolen governorates. But unless confronted quickly and forcefully, it may become an isolated jihadistan from which no end of terror will spawn.
For those that want to truly understand the Iraq conflict, Nancy is eminently qualified and this book is uniquely superb. There is no better book than The Terrorists of Iraq: Inside the Strategy and Tactics of the Iraq Insurgency 2003-2014 on the subject.