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Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 (2004)

by Steve Coll

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2,432336,129 (4.16)46
History. Politics. Nonfiction. HTML:Winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize
‚??The CIA itself would be hard put to beat his grasp of global events . . . Deeply satisfying.‚?Ě ‚??The New York Review of Books
From the award-winning and bestselling author of Directorate S, the explosive first-hand account of America's secret history in Afghanistan.
To what extent did America‚??s best intelligence analysts grasp the rising thread of Islamist radicalism? Who tried to stop bin Laden and why did they fail? Comprehensively and for the first time, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Steve Coll recounts the history of the covert wars in Afghanistan that fueled Islamic militancy and sowed the seeds of the September 11 attacks. Based on scrupulous research and firsthand accounts by key government, intelligence, and military personnel both foreign and American, Ghost Wars details the secret history of the CIA‚??s role in Afghanistan (including its covert operations against Soviet troops from 1979 to 1989), the rise of the Taliban, the emergence of bin Laden, and the failed efforts by U.S. forces to find and assassinate bin Laden
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» See also 46 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 33 (next | show all)
Who created Al-Quaeda? Would you believe it was the CIA? I do. After reading this book. ( )
  MylesKesten | Jan 23, 2024 |
Heavy in details of all the political incompetence, unavoidable errors, and easy-to-make mistakes that compounded in the lead up to 9/11. The similarities to what Afghanistan looks like now and the public facing policy of the current POTUS administration makes it all feel so much worse.√ā

Also a really good portrayal of Massoud, but definitely biased in his favor. Author has a noticeable soft spot for the CIA. ( )
  aepCaomhan | Jul 20, 2023 |
excellent student reviews (best book I ever read)
  pollycallahan | Jul 1, 2023 |
boy that was depressing ( )
  soraxtm | Apr 9, 2023 |
Coll, in 'Ghost Wars,' confirms what we knew all along-that 9/11 and Islamism is a byproduct of the CIA's sponsorship of the Mujhaideen backfiring. While it is bulky (a plethora of jargon), it is also riveting on account of the fact that it discusses the lead up to the War On Terrorism and after factually and with comprehensive evidence. A must read for all military analysts and scholars. ( )
  Amarj33t_5ingh | Jul 8, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 33 (next | show all)
Coll has given us what is certainly the finest historical narrative so far on the origins of Al Qaeda in the post-Soviet rubble of Afghanistan. He has followed up that feat by threading together the complex roles played by diplomats and spies from Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and the United States into a coherent story explaining how Afghanistan became such a welcoming haven for Al Qaeda.
 
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Prologue:In the tattered, cargo-strewn cabin of an Ariana Afghan Airlines passenger jet streaking above Punjab toward Kabul sat a stocky, broad-faced American with short graying hair.
It was a small riot in a year of upheavals, a passing thunderclap disgorged by racing skies.
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History. Politics. Nonfiction. HTML:Winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize
‚??The CIA itself would be hard put to beat his grasp of global events . . . Deeply satisfying.‚?Ě ‚??The New York Review of Books
From the award-winning and bestselling author of Directorate S, the explosive first-hand account of America's secret history in Afghanistan.
To what extent did America‚??s best intelligence analysts grasp the rising thread of Islamist radicalism? Who tried to stop bin Laden and why did they fail? Comprehensively and for the first time, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Steve Coll recounts the history of the covert wars in Afghanistan that fueled Islamic militancy and sowed the seeds of the September 11 attacks. Based on scrupulous research and firsthand accounts by key government, intelligence, and military personnel both foreign and American, Ghost Wars details the secret history of the CIA‚??s role in Afghanistan (including its covert operations against Soviet troops from 1979 to 1989), the rise of the Taliban, the emergence of bin Laden, and the failed efforts by U.S. forces to find and assassinate bin Laden

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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