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The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America's War in Afghanistan Paperback – 21 Feb 2013

3.8 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: W&N (21 Feb. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 075382938X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753829387
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.6 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 329,528 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Gives an insightful look at how powerful some of the US's top generals really are, and also unwraps some of the chaos behind allied military command and the so-called 'war on terror'. (THE SUNDAY BUSINESS POST)

Hastings offers a fiercely intelligent analysis of how the American military spun the war in Afganistan. (THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH)

Book Description

Six rollercoaster weeks that brought down America's top general by the ROLLING STONE journalist who broke the story.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
An interesting book. Very insightful, speaking with experience of the US military machine. What make it even spookier is to find that Hastings died in extremely 'unusual' circumstances. It really looks like the writer of this book made some enemies and was assassinated. Quite sad really that Freedom of speech sees Hastings and Snowden targeted in the ways they have.
http://www.berkeleydailyplanet.com/issue/2013-08-09/article/41312?headline=On-the-Strange-Death-br-of-Michael-Hastings-br-Was-the-Reporter-Car-Hacked-or-Bombed---By-Gar-Smith
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/car-experts-michael-hastings-crash-572699
http://www.globalresearch.ca/death-of-rolling-stone-muckracker-the-michael-hastings-wreck-video-evidence-only-deepens-the-mystery/5343027
Even more surprising - after seeing the video that showed the firebombed car crash into a tree at high speed - I returned to the site to find the youtube video withdrawn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdkv8ptcqbE&feature=c4-overview&list=UUiqRq2mT_bBPMRhHap684Ig

It all looks very suspicious... so reading his book makes you realise that in the land of the free - freedom of speech is censored on many levels and I am sure Hastings was murdered...
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By Dr Barry Clayton TOP 500 REVIEWER on 20 Jun. 2013
Format: Paperback
Hastings book is another contribution to the long list of accounts that focus on the Afghanistan war. Well written, racy in typical journalistic style this is for those who want an insight into how the American top brass behave, officially and privately. Anyone who has served in a senior role in the army will find Hasting's account stimulating but also disturbing.

A major part of the book deals with the author's infamous piece in the magazine 'Rolling Stone' that revealed General Stanley McChrystal's critical views on Obama's running of the war. As a result the General, who refused to resign, was unceremoniously sacked, the first to be so since the sacking of McArthur.

Of particular interest is Hasting's description of the bureaucratic in-fighting involving the Senate, Congress, the Pentagon and the Joint Chiefs, something previously exposed by Bob Woodward and others. Very few emerge with any credit.

The author shares this reviewers long-held view that the war is unwinnable. Recent attempts, that seem doomed to fail, to enter into negotiations with the Taliban reveal the total failure over a decade of military action that has cost billions and the lives of hundreds of NATO forces not to mention the civilian casualties.It is estimated that 160000 civilians have also died so far in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Hasting's reveals, again as have others, the lies about the war that have spewed from the White House and Downing Street, just as they did before and during the second Iraq war. For example, the lies about 'safe havens', the true nature of Pakinstan's support of the insurgents, and the nonsense about the importance of getting and killing Bin Laden-whose death has had nil effect on the war.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When the journalism establishment turned on Michael Hastings, they never laid a finger on his reporting. John Burns was among many who said Hastings had spoiled the game. The grand reporters trade access for discretion. Hastings doesn't do the deference. The result has been explosive journalism. Hastings was without doubt responsible for the sacking of one Afghan commander. Other reputations are equally shredded here.

As a reporter for Rolling Stone, Hastings has prrformed a magnificent service showing most of the hacks weary and useless. His cameo of Thomas Friedman offering advice was the more extraorinary because it was so deadpan. Hastings does not have to over egg the pudding. His forward-tilted reporting means he never has to.

Hastings has produced a classic on Afghanistan, a classic on the American military and a classic on journalism, all in the same book. Hastings is a brave journalist and a sensitive who lost a girl he loved to the war in Iraq. He writes beautifully and empathetically of the losses. Neither does he have to rant and rail at the futility and the lies - it can all speak for itself.

This is an American story and the British hardly appear except one does think of he recycled stories fed out to gutless hacks onveying ridiculous stories about governments in a box.

Hastings writes at a cracking pace and in places this reads like a thriller, in places it is funny and in many other ways, the story is surreal. Yet there is never a loss of truth. The bull**** detector stays silent. Hastings has his story copper-bottomed. Nothing captures the story of the American war in Afghanistan even remotely as well as this. Hastings has thought deeply about war and more attention should be paid to what he says. This book is simply fabulous.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It seems to me Hastings made a big deal out of one drunken night out with a load of army officers. Mind you, it serves them right for their indiscretion in the first place. The meta-narrative, journalists writing about journalism, isn't my cup of tea either. I learned that senior military people and politicians can be venal and duplicitous, but I reckon I knew that already.
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