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|Author||: Kim Barker|
In this darkly comic and unsparing memoir that "tells us more about the Afghan debacle than any foreign policy briefing” (The Seattle Times), the famed investigative journalist uses her wry, incisive voice to expose the absurdities and tragedies of the “forgotten war,” finding humor and humanity amid the rubble and heartbreak. When Kim Barker first arrived in Kabul as a journalist in 2002, she barely owned a passport, spoke only English and had little idea how to do the “Taliban Shuffle” between Afghanistan and Pakistan. No matter—her stories about Islamic militants and shaky reconstruction were soon overshadowed by the bigger news in Iraq. But as she delved deeper into Pakistan and Afghanistan, her love for the countries grew, along with her fear for their future stability.
|Author||: Anand Gopal|
|Editor||: Metropolitan Books|
Told through the lives of three Afghans, the stunning tale of how the United States had triumph in sight in Afghanistan—and then brought the Taliban back from the dead In a breathtaking chronicle, acclaimed journalist Anand Gopal traces in vivid detail the lives of three Afghans caught in America's war on terror. He follows a Taliban commander, who rises from scrawny teenager to leading insurgent; a US-backed warlord, who uses the American military to gain personal wealth and power; and a village housewife trapped between the two sides, who discovers the devastating cost of neutrality. Through their dramatic stories, Gopal shows that the Afghan war, so often regarded as a hopeless quagmire, could in fact have gone very differently. Top Taliban leaders actually tried to surrender within months of the US invasion, renouncing all political activity and submitting to the new government. Effectively, the Taliban ceased to exist—yet the Americans were unwilling to accept such a turnaround. Instead, driven by false intelligence from their allies and an unyielding mandate to fight terrorism, American forces continued to press the conflict, resurrecting the insurgency that persists to this day. With its intimate accounts of life in war-torn Afghanistan, Gopal's thoroughly original reporting lays bare the workings of America's longest war and the truth behind its prolonged agony. A heartbreaking story of mistakes and misdeeds, No Good Men Among the Living challenges our usual perceptions of the Afghan conflict, its victims, and its supposed winners.
|Author||: Clarissa Ward|
“On All Fronts: The Education of a Journalist beautifully outlines . . . what it means to seek the truth. It gave me a new faith in the power of reporting.” —Oprah Winfrey The recipient of multiple Peabody and Murrow awards, Clarissa Ward is a world-renowned conflict reporter. In this strange age of crisis where there really is no front line, she has moved from one hot zone to the next. With multiple assignments in Syria, Egypt, and Afghanistan, Ward, who speaks seven languages, has been based in Baghdad, Beirut, Beijing, and Moscow. She has seen and documented the violent remaking of the world at close range. With her deep empathy, Ward finds a way to tell the hardest stories. On All Fronts is the riveting account of Ward’s singular career and of journalism in this age of extremism. Following a privileged but lonely childhood, Ward found her calling as an international war correspondent in the aftermath of 9/11. From her early days in the field, she was embedding with marines at the height of the Iraq War and was soon on assignment all over the globe. But nowhere does Ward make her mark more than in war-torn Syria, which she has covered extensively with courage and compassion. From her multiple stints entrenched with Syrian rebels to her deep investigations into the Western extremists who are drawn to ISIS, Ward has covered Bashar al-Assad’s reign of terror without fear. In 2018, Ward rose to new heights at CNN and had a son. Suddenly, she was doing this hardest of jobs with a whole new perspective. On All Fronts is the unforgettable story of one extraordinary journalist—and of a changing world.
|Author||: Jennifer Abrahamson|
|Editor||: Simon and Schuster|
Sweet Relief is the remarkable story of how twenty-eight-year-old Marla Ruzicka took on the US government, changed the world, and made the ultimate sacrifice. Marla Ruzicka was a free spirit, a savvy political operator, a wartime Erin Brockovich. Fiercely determined to improve the lives of the less fortunate, the twenty-something blonde was instrumental in convincing the U.S. government to pass historic legislation aiding civilian victims of war. Sweet Relief recounts Marla's journey from an idyllic childhood in a small California town, through Latin America and Africa, and finally to the war zones in Afghanistan and Iraq. Whether she was Rollerblading the halls of Congress to secure funds for civilians in Iraq or throwing parties for journalists in Kabul to raise awareness of her cause, no one who came within a hundred yards of Marla missed her. Her friendly smile and indefatigable pose were ubiquitous in Afghanistan and Iraq where Marla managed a door-to-door effort to identify war victims. While Marla worked tirelessly to care for others, in many ways she neglected herself. A diagnosed manic-depressive, Marla battled extreme emotional lows and an eating disorder. And although she brought love into the homes of the aggrieved, she often struggled to find a love of her own. Marla gave the invisible victims of war a voice and, in the process, helped to win them millions of dollars in unprecedented aid. Tragically, Marla was killed by a suicide bomber on Airport Road in Iraq in April 2005. Weeks later, the US government named the program she fought so hard to establish The Marla Ruzicka Fund. Her life and legacy are an inspiring reminder that love and determination can conquer all.
|Author||: Imran Khan|
|Editor||: Random House|
"A must-read for anyone interested in the intrigue of politics in the most dangerous country on earth" (The Sunday Times) Read the unique insider's view of a country unfamiliar to a Western audience, seen through the eyes of the man set to become Pakistan's new Prime Minister. Born only five years after Pakistan was created in 1947, Imran Khan has lived his country's history. Undermined by a ruling elite, and unable to protect its people from the carnage of regular bombings from terrorists and its own ally, America, Pakistan has for years suffered from instability. Now Imran Khan and his own political party, the Tehreek-e-Insaf, offer a real political alternative for the people of Pakistan at a time when tension between Pakistan's government and the powerful military has reached dangerous new levels. How did this flashpoint of volatility and injustice come about? Pakistan: A Personal History provides a unique insider's view of a country unfamiliar to a western audience. Woven into this history we see how Imran Khan's personal life - his happy childhood in Lahore, his Oxford education, his extraordinary cricketing career, his marriage to Jemima Goldsmith, his mother's influence and that of his Islamic faith - inform both the historical narrativeandhis current philanthropic and political activities. It is at once absorbing and insightful, casting fresh light upon a country whose culture he believes is largely misunderstood by the West.
|Author||: Jon Ronson|
|Editor||: Simon and Schuster|
A wide variety of extremist groups -- Islamic fundamentalists, neo-Nazis -- share the oddly similar belief that a tiny shadowy elite rule the world from a secret room. In Them, journalist Jon Ronson has joined the extremists to track down the fabled secret room. As a journalist and a Jew, Ronson was often considered one of "Them" but he had no idea if their meetings actually took place. Was he just not invited? Them takes us across three continents and into the secret room. Along the way he meets Omar Bakri Mohammed, considered one of the most dangerous men in Great Britain, PR-savvy Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard Thom Robb, and the survivors of Ruby Ridge. He is chased by men in dark glasses and unmasked as a Jew in the middle of a Jihad training camp. In the forests of northern California he even witnesses CEOs and leading politicians -- like Dick Cheney and George Bush -- undertake a bizarre owl ritual. Ronson's investigations, by turns creepy and comical, reveal some alarming things about the looking-glass world of "us" and "them." Them is a deep and fascinating look at the lives and minds of extremists. Are the extremists onto something? Or is Jon Ronson becoming one of them?
|Author||: Paula Bronstein|
|Editor||: University of Texas Press|
The Afghan people are standing at a crucial crossroads in history. Can their fragile democratic institutions survive the drawdown of US military support? Will Afghan women and girls be stripped of their modest gains in freedom and opportunity as the West loses interest in their plight? While the media have largely moved on from these stories, Paula Bronstein remains passionately committed to bearing witness to the lives of the Afghan people. In this powerful photo essay, she goes beyond war coverage to reveal the full complexity of daily life in what may be the world's most reported on yet least known country. Afghanistan: Between Hope and Fear presents a photographic portrait of this war-torn country's people across more than a decade. With empathy born of the challenges of being an American female photojournalist working in a conservative Islamic country, Bronstein gives voice to those Afghans, particularly women and children, rendered silent during the violent Taliban regime. She documents everything from the grave trials facing the country—human rights abuses against women, poverty and the aftermath of war, and heroin addiction, among them—to the stirrings of new hope, including elections, girls' education, and work and recreation. Fellow award-winning journalist Christina Lamb describes the gains that Afghan women have made since the overthrow of the Taliban, as well as the daunting obstacles they still face. An eloquent portrait of everyday life, Afghanistan: Between Hope and Fear is the most complete visual narrative history of the country currently in print.
|Author||: Meredith L. Runion|
|Editor||: Greenwood Publishing Group|
This chronological account traces the history of Afghanistan from pre-civilization to present-day events and considers the future of democracy in Afghanistan.
|Author||: Hassan Abbas|
|Editor||: Yale University Press|
In autumn 2001, U.S. and NATO troops were deployed to Afghanistan to unseat the Taliban rulers, repressive Islamic fundamentalists who had lent active support to Osama bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda jihadists. The NATO forces defeated and dismantled the Taliban government, scattering its remnants across the country. But despite a more than decade-long attempt to eradicate them, the Taliban endured—regrouping and reestablishing themselves as a significant insurgent movement. Gradually they have regained control of large portions of Afghanistan even as U.S. troops are preparing to depart from the region. In his authoritative and highly readable account, author Hassan Abbas examines how the Taliban not only survived but adapted to their situation in order to regain power and political advantage. Abbas traces the roots of religious extremism in the area and analyzes the Taliban’s support base within Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas. In addition, he explores the roles that Western policies and military decision making—not to mention corruption and incompetence in Kabul—have played in enabling the Taliban’s return to power.
|Author||: Helen Thorpe|
|Editor||: Simon and Schuster|
“A raw, intimate look at the impact of combat and the healing power of friendship” (People): the lives of three women deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq, and the effect of their military service on their personal lives and families—named a best book of the year by Publishers Weekly. “In the tradition of Adrian Nicole LeBlanc, Richard Rhodes, and other masters of literary journalism, Soldier Girls is utterly absorbing, gorgeously written, and unforgettable” (The Boston Globe). Helen Thorpe follows the lives of three women over twelve years on their paths to the military, overseas to combat, and back home…and then overseas again for two of them. These women, who are quite different in every way, become friends, and we watch their interaction and also what happens when they are separated. We see their families, their lovers, their spouses, their children. We see them work extremely hard, deal with the attentions of men on base and in war zones, and struggle to stay connected to their families back home. We see some of them drink too much, have affairs, and react to the deaths of fellow soldiers. And we see what happens to one of them when the truck she is driving hits an explosive in the road, blowing it up. She survives, but her life may never be the same again. Deeply reported, beautifully written, and powerfully moving, Soldier Girls is “a breakthrough work...What Thorpe accomplishes in Soldier Girls is something far greater than describing the experience of women in the military. The book is a solid chunk of American history...Thorpe triumphs” (The New York Times Book Review).
|Author||: Mirwais Rahmany|
While much has been written about the Taliban's military tactics, media strategy and harsh treatment of women, the cultural and sometimes less overtly political representation of their identity, the Taliban's other face, is often overlooked. Most Taliban fighters are Pashtuns, a people who cherish their vibrant poetic tradition, closely associated with that of song. The poems in this collection are meant to be recited and sung; and this is the manner in which they are enjoyed by the wider Pashtun public today. For the Taliban today, these poems, or ghazals, have a resonance back to the 1980s war against the Soviets, when similar rhetorical styles, poetic formulae and tricks with metre inspired mujahideen combatants and non-combatants alike. The poetry presented here includes 'classics' of the genre from the 1980s and 1990s as well as a selection from the odes and ghazals of today's conflict.
|Author||: Jasmine Aimaq|
|Editor||: Soho Press|
Jasmine Aimaq’s stunning debut explores Afghanistan on the eve of a violent revolution and the far-reaching consequences of a young Kochi girl’s tragic death. Afghanistan, 1970s. Born to an American mother and a late Afghan war hero, Daniel Sajadi has spent his life navigating a complex identity. After years in Los Angeles, he is returning home to Kabul at the helm of a US foreign aid agency dedicated to eradicating the poppy fields that feed the world’s opiate addiction. But on the drive out of Kabul for an anniversary trip with his wife, Daniel accidentally hits and kills a young Kochi girl named Telaya. He is let off with a nominal fine, in part because nomad tribes are ignored in the eyes of the law, but also because a mysterious witness named Taj Maleki intercedes on his behalf. Wracked with guilt and visions of Telaya, Daniel begins to unravel, running from his crumbling marriage and escalating threats from Taj, who turns out to be a powerful opium khan willing to go to extremes to save his poppies. This groundbreaking literary thriller reveals the invisible lines between criminal enterprises and political regimes—and one man’s search for meaning at the heart of a violent revolution.
|Author||: Steve Fainaru|
From Pulitzer Prize - winning Washington Post reporter Steve Fainaru comes an unforgettable journey into Iraq's parallel war - a world filled with tens of thousands of armed men roaming Iraq with impunity, doing jobs the military can't or won't do. Fainaru reveals in gritty and shocking detail what drives these men to do the world's most dangerous work.
|Author||: Zoe Daniel|
|Editor||: HarperCollins Australia|
A foreign correspondent's memoir like no other ... Zoe Daniel is the ABC's fifteenth South East Asia Correspondent, and one of only a handful of women to combine one of the most dangerous jobs in the world with one of the most demanding - motherhood.From the political unrest in Bangkok and the bittersweet story of conjoined twins in India, to a tragic plane crash in Laos and the destruction of typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, Storyteller is a frank and brave memoir, as much about the events that capture our attention as it is about a personal story of the universal juggle of work, ambition and family amid the unpredictability of life and the predictability of the 24/7 media cycle. Storyteller is a timely reminder of the bravery and audacity of the men and women who bring us the news - the journalists, the local 'fixers', the cameramen - but above all it is a tribute to ordinary people who find themselves eyewitnesses to the extraordinary.
|Author||: Patton Oswalt|
|Editor||: Simon and Schuster|
"Between 1995 and 1999, Patton Oswalt lived with an unshakable addiction. It wasn't drugs, alcohol or sex: it was film. After moving to L.A., Oswalt became a huge film buff (or as he calls it, a sprocket fiend), absorbing classics, cult hits, and new releases at the New Beverly Cinema. Silver screen celluloid became Patton's life schoolbook, informing his notion of acting, writing, comedy, and relationships. Set in the nascent days of L.A.'s alternative comedy scene, Oswalt's memoir chronicles his journey from fledgling stand-up comedian to self-assured sitcom actor, with the colorful New Beverly collective and a cast of now-notable young comedians supporting him all along the way"--
|Author||: Kim Barker|
Now a Major Motion Picture titled Whiskey Tango Foxtrot starring Tina Fey, Margot Robbie, Martin Freeman, Alfred Molina, and Billy Bob Thornton. From tea with warlords in the countryside to parties with drunken foreign correspondents in the “dry” city of Kabul, journalist Kim Barker captures the humor and heartbreak of life in post-9/11 Afghanistan and Pakistan in this profound and darkly comic memoir. As Barker grows from awkward newbie to seasoned reporter, she offers an insider’s account of the region’s “forgotten war” at a time when all eyes were turned to Iraq. Candid, self-deprecating, and laugh-out-loud funny, Barker shares both her affection for the absurdities of these two hapless countries and her fear for their future stability.
|Author||: James Andrew Miller|
|Editor||: Henry Holt and Company|
Tinderbox tells the exclusive, explosive, uninhibited true story of HBO and how it burst onto the American scene and screen to detonate a revolution and transform our relationship with television forever. The Sopranos, Game of Thrones, Sex and the City, The Wire, Succession...HBO has long been the home of epic shows, as well as the source for brilliant new movies, news-making documentaries, and controversial sports journalism. By thinking big, trashing tired formulas, and killing off cliches long past their primes, HBO shook off the shackles of convention and led the way to a bolder world of content, opening the door to all that was new, original, and worthy of our attention. In Tinderbox, award-winning journalist James Andrew Miller uncovers a bottomless trove of secrets and surprises, revealing new conflicts, insights, and analysis. As he did to great acclaim with SNL in Live from New York; with ESPN in Those Guys Have All the Fun; and with talent agency CAA in Powerhouse, Miller continues his record of extraordinary access to the most important voices, this time speaking with talents ranging from Abrams (J. J.) to Zendaya, as well as every single living president of HBO—and hundreds of other major players. Over the course of more than 750 interviews with key sources, Miller reveals how fraught HBO’s journey has been, capturing the drama and the comedy off-camera and inside boardrooms as HBO created and mobilized a daring new content universe, and, in doing so, reshaped storytelling and upended our entertainment lives forever.
|Author||: Kim Barker|
A wisecracking foreign correspondent recounts her experiences in Afghanistan and Pakistan while sharing cautionary observations about the region in its first post-Taliban years and the responsibilities of the U.S. and NATO.
|Author||: Alison Owings|
|Editor||: Rutgers University Press|
In Indian Voices, Alison Owings takes readers on a fresh journey across America, east to west, north to south, and around again. Owings's most recent oral history—engagingly written in a style that entertains and informs—documents what Native Americans say about themselves, their daily lives, and the world around them. Young and old from many tribal nations speak with candor, insight, and (unknown to many non-Natives) humor about what it is like to be a Native American in the twenty-first century. Through intimate interviews many also express their thoughts about the sometimes staggeringly ignorant, if often well-meaning, non-Natives they encounter—some who do not realize Native Americans still exist, much less that they speak English, have cell phones, use the Internet, and might attend powwows and power lunches. Indian Voices, an inspiring and important contribution to the literature about the original Americans, will make every reader rethink the past—and present—of the United States.
|Author||: James Fergusson|
|Editor||: Random House|
Southern Afghanistan in the early 1990s was in even greater chaos than it is now. The Russians, who had occupied the country throughout the 1980s, were long gone. The disparate ethnic and religious leaders who had united to eject the invaders - the famous mujaheddin - were at each others' throats. For the rural poor of Kandahar province, life was almost impossible. On 12 October 1994 a small group of religious students decided to take matters into their own hands. Led by an illiterate village mullah with one eye, some 200 of them surrounded and took Spin Boldak, a trucking stop on the border with Pakistan. From this short and unremarkable border skirmish, a legend was born. The students' numbers swelled as news of their triumph spread. The Taliban, as they now called themselves - taliban is the plural of talib, literally 'one who seeks knowledge' - had a simple mission statement: the disarmament of the population, and the establishment of a theocracy based on Sharia law. They fought with a religious zeal that the warring mujaheddin could not match. By February 1995, this people's revolt had become a national movement; 18 months later Kabul fell, and the country was effectively theirs. James Fergusson's fascinating account of this extraordinary story is be required reading for anyone who wishes to understand the situation in Afghanistan, now and for the future...