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Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil, and Fundamentalism in Central Asia
Synopses & Reviews
Shrouding themselves and their aims in deepest secrecy, the leaders of the Taliban movement control Afghanistan with an inflexible, crushing fundamentalism. The most extreme and radical of all Islamic organizations, the Taliban inspires fascination, controversy, and especially fear in both the Muslim world and the West. Correspondent Ahmed Rashid brings the shadowy world of the Taliban into sharp focus in this enormously interesting and revealing book. It is the only authoritative account of the Taliban and modern day Afghanistan available to English language readers.
Based on his experiences as a journalist covering the civil war in Afghanistan for twenty years, traveling and living with the Taliban, and interviewing most of the Taliban leaders since their emergence to power in 1994, Rashid offers unparalleled firsthand information. He explains how the growth of Taliban power has already created severe instability in Russia, Iran, Pakistan, and five Central Asian republics. He describes the Taliban' s role as a major player in a new "Great Game" — a competition among Western countries and companies to build oil and gas pipelines from Central Asia to Western and Asian markets. The author also discusses the controversial changes in American attitudes toward the Taliban — from early support to recent bombings of Osama Bin Laden' s hideaway and other Taliban-protected terrorist bases — and how they have influenced the stability of the region.
"Rashid combines close journalistic field experience with the Taliban and long-term knowledge of Afghanistan in this work of great depth and understanding." Barnett R. Rubin, author of The Fragmentation of Afghanistan and The Search for Peace in Afghanistan
"The broader story here is powerful....One learns...a great deal from Mr. Rashid's book about the nature of local Central Asian politics and the consequences of interference by outside powers....[A] valuable and informative work." Richard Bernstein, New York Times
Correspondent Ahmed Rashid brings the shadowy world of the Taliban — the world's most extreme and radical Islamic organization — into sharp focus in this enormously insightful book. He offers the only authoritative account of the Taliban available to English language readers, explaining the Taliban's rise to power, its impact on Afghanistan and the region, its role in oil and gas company decisions, and the effects of changing American attitudes toward the Taliban. He also describes the new face of Islamic fundamentalism and explains why Afghanistan has become the world center for international terrorism.
A journalist who covered the civil war in Afghanistan for 20 years and interviewed leaders of the Taliban organization brings into sharp focus this most radical of fundamentalist Islamic movements, which is creating instability in the East and taking an increasing role in the development of oil and gas pipelines from Central Asia to Western and Asian markets.
About the Author
Ahmed Rashid is a correspondent for the Far Eastern Economic Review and Daily Telegraph reporting on Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia. He is the author of The Resurgence of Central Asia: Islam or Nationalism?
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History and Social Science » Asia » Central Asia