Counter Jihad
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Counter Jihad
America's Military Experience in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria

Brian Glyn Williams

400 pages | 6 x 9 | 24 illus.
Cloth 2016 | ISBN 9780812248678 | $39.95t | Add to cart || Outside USA | £34.00
Ebook 2016 | ISBN 9780812293463 | $39.95s | £26.00 | Add to cart || About
A volume in the Haney Foundation Series

"A superb chronicle of the campaigns to counter Al Qaeda, the Islamic State, and their affiliates—by a student of, and participant in, those campaigns."—General David Petraeus, former Director of the CIA and Commander of U.S. Central Command and NATO forces in Afghanistan

"In addition to providing just the right mix of in-depth coverage and artful analysis, Brian Glyn Williams skillfully leverages his first-hand experiences in the region to breathe life into combatants from all sides as well as ordinary civilians caught up in the Iraq, Syrian, and Afghan conflicts. A must read for those seeking a balanced, behind-the-scenes explanation of the events dominating the news cycle since 9/11."—Lieutenant Colonel Mark J. Reardon (U.S. Army Retired), Office of the Chief of Staff of the Army, Operation Enduring Freedom Study Group

"A reasonable, step-by-step look back at the war on terror that aims to dispel misconceptions [and a] refreshingly nonpolemical work that walks through the benumbing stages of war and response to the present Islamic State group problem."—Kirkus Reviews

"Counter Jihad is mesmerizing, provocative, and deeply researched and informative. Brian Glyn Williams' deft and urgent storytelling takes a place alongside Lawrence Wright's The Looming Tower as a must-read about the last decades' global counter-terrorism campaign. History at its very best."—Doug Stanton, New York Times-bestselling author of The Horse Soldiers

"In his latest and most ambitious book, Brian Glyn Williams examines America's epic and ongoing struggle with Islamist terrorist and insurgent groups, from 9/11 to 2016. Counter Jihad cuts through the political spin to take readers on a fascinating journey into the violent world of killer drones, tribal warlords, special forces, CIA operatives, and holy warriors."—Scott Levi, The Ohio State University

"Although Williams provides the content with all the rigor and discipline one would expect from an expert in the field, Counter Jihad explains this history in a way that is both interesting and understandable for someone with minimal knowledge about the Middle East. The result is an excellent resource for the Junior Airman, Marine, Sailor or Soldier desiring to know more about the complex world in which he or she fights. From explanation about Mid-Twentieth century conflicts around Israel to analysis of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria's (ISIS) strength in early 2016, this book offers the reader a thorough and balanced summary that is neither strictly pro-American nor pro-Middle East, but pro-truth."—U.S. Air Force Research Institute

Counter Jihad is a sweeping account of America's military campaigns in the Islamic world. Revising our understanding of what was once known as the War on Terror, it provides a retrospective on the extraordinary series of conflicts that saw the United States deploy more than two and a half million men and women to fight in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. Brian Glyn Williams traces these unfolding wars from their origins in the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan through U.S. Central Command's ongoing campaign to "degrade and destroy" the hybrid terrorist group known as ISIS. Williams takes readers on a journey beginning with the 2001 U.S. overthrow of the Taliban, to the toppling of Saddam Hussein, to the unexpected emergence of the notorious ISIS "Caliphate" in the Iraqi lands that the United States once occupied.

Counter Jihad is the first history of America's military operations against radical Islamists, from the Taliban-controlled Hindu Kush Mountains of Afghanistan, to the Sunni Triangle of Iraq, to ISIS's headquarters in the deserts of central Syria, giving both generalists and specialists an overview of events that were followed by millions but understood by few. Williams provides the missing historical context for the rise of the terror group ISIS out of the ashes of Saddam Hussein's secular Baathist Iraq, arguing that it is only by carefully exploring the recent past can we understand how this jihadist group came to conquer an area larger than Britain and spread havoc from Syria to Paris to San Bernardino.

Brian Glyn Williams is Professor of Islamic History at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth. He was employed by the CIA to track suicide bombers in Afghanistan in 2007. He is author of several books on warfare and terrorism, including Afghanistan Declassified, also available from the University of Pennsylvania Press, and The Last Warlord: The Life and Legend of Dostum, the Afghan Warrior Who Led US Special Forces to Topple the Taliban Regime.

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