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Overcoming the Bush Legacy in Iraq and Afghanistan [Hardcover]

Deepak Tripathi
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

28 April 2010
The military adventure that George W. Bush embarked on within months of his inauguration in 2001 was to eclipse everything else in his presidency. His name will forever be synonymous with the 'war on terror'. What started as a military response to al Qaeda's attacks in New York and Washington on 9/11, with the goal of neutralizing al Qaeda and its Taliban hosts in Afghanistan, quickly fused with the neo-conservative agenda to dominate and reshape the Middle East. Al Qaeda's terrorism was answered by the terror of American military power, which has destroyed or blighted the lives of millions in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan. Deepak Tripathi, a former BBC correspondent who has kept a keen eye on the region for more than three decades, identifies systematically the naive calculations, strategic and operational blunders, disregard for history and for other cultures, and even downright prejudice that have brought so much harm to so many. The legacy of Bush's foreign policy will take years to overcome, Tripathi argues. His war on terror provoked resentment and violent opposition, opened up sectarian divisions, and created Hobbesian conditions of war of all against all. The long-term price tag for America has been estimated at a colossal 3 trillion, but as Tripathi seeks to demonstrate, the overall cost, in human and economic terms, will be incalculable.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Potomac Books Inc; 1 edition (28 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1597975036
  • ISBN-13: 978-1597975032
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 16.5 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,646,242 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

DEEPAK TRIPATHI, PhD, FRHistS, FRAS, is a British historian of the Cold War, the Middle East, South Asia, and the United States in the world. He is an honorary research fellow at the University of Roehampton in London, and serves on the Global Advisory Board and Research Team of Human Dignity & Humiliation Studies, a network of scholars and practitioners. He is the author of a trilogy that includes "Imperial Designs: War, Humiliation and the Making of History" (2013), "Breeding Ground: Afghanistan and the Origins of Islamist Terrorism" (2011) and "Overcoming the Bush Legacy in Iraq and Afghanistan" (2010), published by the Potomac imprint of the University of Nebraska Press. Earlier, Tripathi spent a long career as a journalist (1974-2000), primarily with the BBC.

Product Description


This is a painful, yet indispensable read for people of conscience throughout the world. Tripathi s book comes second to none in terms of narrating perhaps one of the darkest eras in U.S. history with reason and candor. A fantastic book the kind that you would read . . . and then want to read again.

About the Author

Deepak Tripathi is a former BBC correspondent and editor (1977-2000). He opened the BBC office in Kabul in the early 1990s and was the BBC's resident correspondent. He has also reported from Pakistan, Syria, Sri Lanka, and India. He is the author of Dialectics of the Afghanistan Conflict: How the Country Became a Terrorist Haven (Observer Research Foundation, 2008). Tripathi is a regular contributor to CounterPunch, History News Network (George Mason University, Virginia) and ZNet. He lives near London.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bush's Adventures in Blunder-land 10 Jun 2010
This short, sharp book about President George W Bush and his War on Terror is exactly how current affairs should be written - short and sharp. It is a necessary book because, while its author, Deepak Tripathi, is a committed critic he avoids the tone of diatribe that too often signifies accounts of Bush's foreign policy failings. Tripathi's arguments are based on credible, verifiable sources. 'Overcoming The Bush Legacy In Iraq and Afghanistan' is academic in the depth and rigour of its research but properly journalistic in its narrative drive and clarity of expression.

At this point I should declare an interest. Before Deepak Tripathi left radio news to pursue his career in print, we worked together for several years. I came to respect him for his integrity and brain-power. As it happens, I do not share all his judgements about American foreign policy and I disagree with his verdict on George W. Bush in some particulars. I have always felt, for example, that after the attacks on New York and Washington in September 2001, Bush's options were constrained by the need to meet a military threat with a military response. With hindsight, many of his subsequent decisions may seem rushed, ill considered and needlessly destructive but the American electorate was demanding swift retribution and, as Commander-in-Chief, Bush was obliged to deliver.

The story told in 'Overcoming The Bush Legacy In Iraq and Afghanistan' begins in Washington, with the neo-conservatism of leading hawks such as Paul Wolfowitz and Donald Rumefeld.
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Amazon.com: 3.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The True Picture 24 May 2010
By Wilfred Cude - Published on Amazon.com
Now that Karl Rove and Dick Cheney attempt to re-write the history of their own appalling misadventures, this book is most opportune. Concise, precise, lucid and ultimately quite compelling, Overcoming the Bush Legacy delineates the harsh facts we must face and the ugly situations we must remedy. In brief, the administration of George W. Bush has been a catastrophe without parallel in modern times, and addressing that catastrophe is a matter of daunting complexity. The strike at Afghanistan was intended to eliminate Bin Laden, oust the Taliban and install a democracy in that unhappy country. Today, Bin Laden lives, the nominally democratic government is unspeakably corrupt, the Taliban dominates much of Afghanistan and Pakistan, and has even struck back at New York City. The assault on Iraq was intended to neutralize weapons of mass destruction, remove Saddam Hussein and install a democracy in that unhappy country. Today, Hussein's death was purchased at the cost of a trillion American dollars, the death of thousands of coalition soldiers, the maiming of tens of thousands more, the death or maiming of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi citizens, the dispersal internally or internationally of millions more, the installation of a dysfunctional government, the reduction of an entire economic infrastructure to ruins, and continued unchecked murderous violence. And those WMD never existed. Far worse even than the aftermath of Vietnam, the current mess leaves the United States crippled militarily, economically and politically, its international reputation sullied and in tatters. Mr. Tripathi adroitly threads through the subtle tangles of misconception that produced this sad outcome, and he points the way to the far more difficult diplomatic maneuvers that constitute the only viable hope of improvement.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What's in the daily noose! 27 Jun 2010
By Vagn Asbjorn Hansen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Sadly this book contributes no information that avid news readers have not accumulated, not does it put any tantalising questionmarks on what main stream news services try to convince us it the truth because told so often. It would be a well planned update for somebody who has slept 10 years.
As for overcoming the legacy there is no advice and no quantifying the hurt US has done to millions of people. They are still awaiting compensation. Obama could try paying up to victims in Iraq - then there would be at least one High Street (Mustansir Street I suppose) to help refloat the global econonomy.

Vagn Asbjørn Hansen (France)
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