Friday, July 09, 2004

How Did This Happen? Terrorism and the new war edited by James F Hoge Jr and Gideon Rose

This volume of essays published by Public Affairs Reports came out in October 2001, and features writers from Fouad Ajami to Wesley Clark to Fareed Zakaria. It is a fairly quick read, and of interest mostly for a then and now comparison. At least for me: the ideas are doubtless new to many of us. Karen Armstrong's Was it Inevitable is a whitewash of Islamic history (how did the author of so many books on Islam manage to miss so many unpleasant details?), but the rest are honest if not always perfectly accurate in hindsight. Topics range from airline security (which still has gaping holes) to military reorganization, countering bioterrorism, and diplomacy.

I bought this at Half Price Books, but you may want to check your local library first. If you don't know a lot and want to learn, read it. If you are pretty well versed in the international, military, and homeland security scene, you might find it interesting to see how thinking has evolved. Otherwise . ..

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