Ahmed Rashid's Taliban: The story of the Afghan Warlords
is the single best book available on the subject of the regime in Afghanistan responsible for harbouring the terrorist Osama bin Laden. Rashid is a Pakistani journalist who has spent most of his career reporting on the region--he has personally met and interviewed many of the Taliban's shadowy leaders. Taliban
was written and published before the massacres of September 11, 2001, yet it is essential reading for anyone who hopes to understand the aftermath of that black day. It includes details on how and why the Taliban came to power, the government's oppression of ordinary citizens (especially women), the heroin trade, oil intrigue, and--in a vitally relevant chapter--bin Laden's sinister rise to power. These pages contain stories of mass slaughter, beheadings and the Taliban's crushing war against freedom: Under Mullah Omar, it has banned everything from kite flying to singing and dancing at weddings. Rashid is for the most part an objective reporter, though his rage sometimes (and understandably) comes to the surface: "The Taliban were right, their interpretation of Islam was right, and everything else was wrong and an expression of human weakness and a lack of piety", he notes with sarcasm. He has produced a compelling portrait of modern evil. --John Miller
Ahmed Rashid's book describes the stuff that Bond [films] are made of...if anyone understands the place Rashid does. -- Jason Burke, Observer
Rashid tells a complicated story clearly. He places the rise of the Taliban in the context of the Afgahn civil war. -- Robin Banerji, Daily Telegraph
Read this remarkable book and the bewildering complexity of Afghan politics,the chaos, narcotics and violence will become clear -- Patrick Seale, Sunday Times
This is a riveting, balanced and well-informed book -- International Herald Tribune
The definitive account of the history of the Taliban and its uncertain future. This is the book that Tony Blair and Alistair Campbell consulted to gain a better impression of the unique circumstances of the Taliban. An exploration of the overwhelming complexity of Afghan politics, The Taliban: The Story behind the Afghan Warlords explains how it came in to being, how it is sustained and how Osama bin Laden has risen to such a figure of absolute power. Ahmed Rashid clarifies the often confusing racial and religious tensions that dominate this fractious land. And describes why the drug trade has exacerbated an already untenable situation. Rashid argues that Taliban is incapable of reform, and that, in the current crisis, it may implode due to defections. With the Northern Alliance an unpredictable alternative, Rashid concludes that without a multi-tribal government in which bordering states do not seek predominant influence, there will never be peace. 'Read this remarkable book and the bewildering complexity of Afghan politics and the deadly over-spill of chaos, narcotics and sectarian violence into the surrounding region will become clear.' Patrick Seale, Sunday Times 'Ahmed Rashid's book describes the stuff that Bond [films] are made of. Warring tribes, clashing empires, fanatics with dreams of world domination, violence and sex . If anyone understands the place Rashid does.' Jason Burke, Observer
From the Publisher
'Tony Blair's plans for post-Taliban Afghanistan are heavily influenced by a book...Taliban by Ahmed Rashid. [It] is being read not just by the Prime Minister but by his personal assistant, Anji Hunter, and the director of communications, Alastair Campbell' - The Guardian
, 16th October 2001
From the Back Cover
'This is an impressive and eminently readable analysis of the Taliban movement. The author is especially well-placed, having covered Afghanistan for two decades and having direct access to policy-makers in Pakistan, Iran and Central Asia. It would be hard to see how anyone could rival this account: it bids well to be the leading book on the subject.' Professor Fred Halliday, London School of Economics
The presence of Osama bin Laden and his terrorist bases in Afghanistan has brought the Taliban into sharp focus as the most radical and extreme Islamist movement in the world today. Little is known about the Taliban because of the deep secrecy that surrounds the organization, its leaders and aims. The Taliban has attracted fascination and loathing, controversy and fear both in the Muslim world and the West.
The geo-strategic implications of Taliban expansion are already creating severe instability in Russia and Central Asia. The Taliban has become a major player in the new 'Great Game' - harking back to the late-nineteenth-century British and Russian confrontation in the region - involving competition between Wester oil companies, manupulation from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Iran, and covert operations by the CIA. The prize: access to the new oil fields and transit routes for oil pipelines, not to mention the allure - for some - of the narcotics trade. Ahmed Rashid, who has been reporting on Afghanistan since 1979, is one of the few international journalists to have interviewed the Taliban leaders. Taliban sheds new light on a shadowy movement which poses a real threat to world peace.
Ahmed Rashid is the Pakistan, Central Asia and Afghanistan correspondent for the Daily Telegraph and the Far Eastern Economic Review. He also broadcasts regularly with the BBC, CNN and other international news organizations.
--This text refers to an alternate
About the Author
Ahmed Rashid is a correspondent for the Daily Telegraph reporting on Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia. He also broadcasts regularly with the BBC, CNN and other international news organisations.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.