By Patrick Cockburn

ISBN-10: 1784784494

ISBN-13: 9781784784492

From the award-winning writer of The upward push of Islamic State, the basic tale of the center East’s disintegration

The Age of Jihad charts the turmoil of today’s center East and the devastating position the West has performed within the sector from 2001 to the current. starting with the US-led invasion of Afghanistan, Cockburn explores the immense geopolitical fight that's the Sunni–Shia clash, a conflict that shapes the conflict on terror, western army interventions, the evolution of the insurgency, the civil wars in Yemen, Libya and Syria, the Arab Spring, the autumn of neighborhood dictators, and the increase of Islamic State.

As Cockburn indicates in arresting aspect, Islamic nation didn't explode into lifestyles in Syria within the wake of the Arab Spring, as traditional knowledge might have it. The association gestated over a number of years in occupied Iraq, prior to turning out to be to the purpose the place it will probably threaten the steadiness of the entire area. Cockburn was once the 1st Western journalist to warn of the hazards posed through Islamic nation. His originality and breadth of imaginative and prescient make The Age of Jihad the main in-depth research of the neighborhood problem within the heart East to date.

“Patrick Cockburn noticed the emergence of ISIS a lot ahead of anyone else and wrote approximately it with a intensity of realizing that was once simply in a league of its personal. no one else was once writing that stuff at the moment, and the judges questioned no matter if the govt may still reflect on pensioning off the entire of MI6 and hiring Patrick Cockburn as an alternative. The breadth of his wisdom and his skill make connections is phenomenal.”
—Judges of the overseas Affairs Journalist of the yr Award 2014

“Quite easily, the easiest Western journalist at paintings within the center East today.”
—Seymour M. Hersh

“One of the easiest proficient on-the-ground newshounds. He was once typically right on Iraq.”
—Sidney Blumenthal, in an electronic mail to Hillary Clinton

“A compelling sequence of dispatches from a journalist who has discovered the not easy golden rule in Iraq: ‘to forecast the worst attainable outcome.’”

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Example text

Now, once again, the general is in a key position. Discussions of power-sharing between Afghan parties will be an exercise in fantasy if they disregard men like Dostum, who, however unsavoury, have real armed forces at their disposal. It is easy enough to demonise the general. Ahmed Rashid, a Pakistani writer and journalist, once noticed, on visiting him in his headquarters in the Qalai Janghi fortress—the name means Fort of War—outside Mazar, that there were smears of blood and pieces of flesh in one corner of the courtyard.

A few weeks later ISIS over-ran Ramadi. Journalists are sometimes patronisingly congratulated for providing ‘the first draft of history’, though often the first draft is better than the last draft. There is credibility about eyewitness reporting before it has been through the blender of received wisdom and academic interpretation. Journalists are often over-modest about what they know, and their editors are even more so—ever nervous when their man or woman in the field is saying different things from some pundit they have just seen on television or read in an op-ed column.

But a retrospective account, written a dozen or more years after the start of the Afghan and Iraq wars and four years since the uprisings of 2011, also has benefits. Common features in these conflicts jump out and make it possible to draw general conclusions about the origin and course of distinct but interrelated events. I have always found it a weakness in discussions of these wars and conflicts that people who are expert about Syria do not have much firsthand knowledge of Iraq and may know little or nothing about Turkey, though developments in any one of these countries cannot be fully grasped without an understanding of the others.

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Age of Jihad: Islamic State and the Great War for the Middle East by Patrick Cockburn

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