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The Accidental Guerrilla

I had seen some pretty high-power reviews of David Kilcullen’s The Accidental Guerrilla: Fighting Small Wars in the Midst of a Big One start popping up, then a co-worker who’s acknowledged in the book’s Acknowledgements lent me her copy. Very, very interesting. For starters, this is a good description of the difference between counterterrorism and […]


The Looming Tower

I picked up a copy of Lawrence Wright’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 (Vintage) this weekend in Santa Fe. Started reading it just to fill in a few minutes, then couldn’t stop reading it. Apologies to all those who’s earlier recommendations of this book to me went unheeded […]


The Great Partition: The making of India and Pakistan

With no real guidance on where to start reading about Partition, I chose Yasmin Khan’s The Great Partition: The Making of India and Pakistan. Khan starts right off in 1946, with nods back to the end of WWII in 1945 and the connections amongst the end of the war, Britain’s failing power and the unrest […]


The Dust of Empire

For months, I have been scavanging the shelves of my area’s largest used book store, trying to find a copy of Peter Hopkirk’s The Great Game: The Struggle for Empire in Central Asia. I finally broke down and ordered a new copy (pre-reading thanks to Dan C. and Meghan B. for the ringing endorsements). During […]



Several times in Descent into Chaos, Amhed Rashid made reference to his first work on the Taliban and how he would not repeat that story in Descent. So, having covered 2001 through early 2008 in Descent, I went back to learn more about the Taliban from the beginning (approximately 1994). Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and […]