By Patrick Cockburn
From the award-winning writer of The upward thrust of Islamic State, the fundamental 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 zone from 2001 to the current. starting with the US-led invasion of Afghanistan, Cockburn explores the monstrous geopolitical fight that's the Sunni–Shia clash, a conflict that shapes the warfare on terror, western army interventions, the evolution of the insurgency, the civil wars in Yemen, Libya and Syria, the Arab Spring, the autumn of nearby dictators, and the increase of Islamic State.
As Cockburn indicates in arresting element, Islamic country didn't explode into life 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, earlier than transforming into to the purpose the place it could possibly threaten the steadiness of the entire zone. Cockburn was once the 1st Western journalist to warn of the hazards posed by means of Islamic nation. His originality and breadth of imaginative and prescient make The Age of Jihad the main in-depth research of the local trouble within the heart East to date.
“Patrick Cockburn noticed the emergence of ISIS a lot previous to anyone else and wrote approximately it with a intensity of figuring out that was once simply in a league of its personal. no one else used to be writing that stuff at the moment, and the judges puzzled no matter if the govt. should still think about pensioning off the entire of MI6 and hiring Patrick Cockburn in its place. The breadth of his wisdom and his skill make connections is phenomenal.”
—Judges of the overseas Affairs Journalist of the 12 months Award 2014
“Quite easily, the simplest Western journalist at paintings within the heart East today.”
—Seymour M. Hersh
“One of the easiest trained on-the-ground reporters. He used to be often right on Iraq.”
—Sidney Blumenthal, in an e-mail to Hillary Clinton
“A compelling sequence of dispatches from a journalist who has realized the challenging golden rule in Iraq: ‘to forecast the worst attainable outcome.’”
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Additional resources for Age of Jihad: Islamic State and the Great War for the Middle East
In the central core of this region civil wars are tearing apart Iraq, Syria and Yemen with a ferocity that probably means none of them will come together again as unitary states. The war in Afghanistan continues without winners and in Libya central government has disintegrated since 2011, as it did 20 years earlier in Somalia, a country that remains in a state of armed anarchy. At either end of this vast region of instability the Turkish–Kurd civil war has resumed in the mountains of south-east Turkey and Boko Haram suicide bombers slaughter people in Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon.
As they grow closer we see that two of them are carrying children with faces covered in blood. We stop and ask a man beside the road what has happened. He says a mine exploded—one of the thousands of devices that litter this land after two decades of war. Villagers, almost all men, mill about in ineffective confusion. Even in this emergency Afghan women do not leave their houses, apart from one old woman who cradles a boy’s head in her lap. She is wailing and rocking to and fro, but she has not even wiped the blood off his face.
This is exacerbated by deep ethnic divisions. The Pashtuns, on whom the Taliban rely, make up 42 per cent of the population. The Tajiks (25 per cent) and the Uzbeks (8 per cent) generally stand behind the Northern Alliance. Massacres, particularly around the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif, have exacerbated ethnic hatreds over the past five years. Already the Hazara Shia Muslims, who make up 19 per cent of the population, are protesting at the Tajik takeover of Kabul. Power in Afghanistan is fragmented and will remain so.