Descent into Chaos: The U.S. and the Disaster in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia

Descent into Chaos: The U.S. and the Disaster in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia

by Ahmed Rashid

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Overview

After September 11th , Ahmed Rashid's crucial book Taliban introduced American readers to that now notorious regime. In this new work, he returns to Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia to review the catastrophic aftermath of America's failed war on terror. Called "Pakistan's best and bravest reporter" by Christopher Hitchens, Rashid has shown himself to be a voice of reason amid the chaos of present-day Central Asia. Descent Into Chaos is his blistering critique of American policy-a dire warning and an impassioned call to correct these disasterous strategies before these failing states threaten global stability and bring devastation to our world.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780143115571
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/07/2009
Edition description: Revised
Pages: 560
Sales rank: 342,764
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.40(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Ahmed Rashid is a journalist who has been covering Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Central Asia for more than twenty years. He is a correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, Far Eastern Economic Review, Daily Telegraph, and The Nation, a leading newspaper in Pakistan. His #1 New York Times bestseller Taliban has been translated into more than twenty languages.

Table of Contents

Descent into ChaosMaps
Countries and Cities of Central Asia
Ethnic Distribution Within Pakistan and Afghanistan
Afghan Provinces and Federally Administered Tribal Areas
NATO Deployment and Provincial Reconstruction Team Locations in Afghanistan, 2007
Opium Poppy Cultivation in Afghanistan, 2007
Military Offensives Launched by the Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan, 2007-2008

Glossary
Acronyms

Introduction
Imperial Overreach and Nation Building

Part One: 9/11 And War

1. A Man With A Mission
The Unending Conflict in Afghanistan

2. "The U.S. Will Act Like a Wounded Bear"
Pakistan's Long Search for Its Soul

3. The Chief Executive's Schizophrenia
Pakistan, the United Nations, and the United States Before 9/11

4. Attack!
Retaliation and Invasion

5. The Search for a Settlement
Afghanistan and Pakistan at Odds

Part Two: The Politics of the Post-9/11 World

6. A Nuclear State of Mind
India, Pakistan, and the War of Permanent Instability

7. The One-Billion-Dollar Warlords
The War Within Afghanistan

8. Musharraf's Lost Moment
Political Expediency and Authoritarian Rule

Part Three: The Failure of Nation Building

9. Afghanistan I
Economic Reconstruction

10. Afghanistan II
Rebuilding Security

11. Double-Dealing with Islamic Extremism
Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Pakistan

12. Taliban Resurgent
The Taliban Return Home

Part Four: Descent Into Chaos

13. Al Qaeda's Bolt-Hole
Pakistan's Tribal Areas

14. America Shows The Way
The Disappeared and the Rendered

15. Drugs and Thugs
Opium Fuels the Insurgency

16. Who Lost Uzbekistan?
Tyranny in Central Asia

17. The Taliban Offensive
Battling for Control of Afghanistan, 2006-2007

18. The Death of an Icon
Pakistan Struggles to Survive

19. Conclusion
A Fragile Future

Acknowledgments
Notes
Suggested Reading
Index

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher


"Not only provides thoughtful, detailed dissection of seminal events in Central Asian recent history, but an insightful snapshot into future scenarios of where the roadmaps to terror and peace may be headed."
-Greg Mortenson, author of The New York Times bestseller Three Cups of Tea

"Powerful."
-Wolf Blitzer

"Rashid, a Pakistani journalist, is that most valuable of political analysts: both insider and outsider to the problem he studies. His book should be read by anyone pondering how America might stop widening Osama bin Ladin's pool of bomb-clad volunteers."
- Chicago Tribune

"[A] brilliant and passionate book."
-The New York Review of Books

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Descent into Chaos: The U.S. and the Disaster in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
OregonAnthrop More than 1 year ago
An excellent account of the economic and political difficulties facing the nations of Afghanistan and Pakistan and of the invovement of the U.S. in creating and exacerbating these problems. Rashid understands that the conflicts in both countries are far more closely related to control of power and resources than to "militant Islam."
jrcovey on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Required reading for anyone who wishes to have an informed opinion on the Afghan war.Rashid's earlier book on the Taliban was a real bolt from the blue. _Taliban_ did more than any other book to dispel the mystery around the movement and make it clear who they were and are.In this book he is more concerned with events that have been transpiring in plain sight, so to speak, so it does not quite have the same oomph. But it is a comprehensive and trustworthy guide to the complexities of the Pakistan-Afghanistan relationship from which has come so much of the present struggle.Rashid is forthright about his friendship with Hamid Karzai, a relationship that does not seem to keep him from levelling the odd criticism. I think it fair to say that this insider status has expanded rather than limited this book's perspective.
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