Jo's Reviews > Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and Fundamentalism in Central Asia

Taliban by Ahmed Rashid
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's review
Apr 30, 08

Read in March, 2008

After reading The Kite Runner, I felt compelled to learn more about Afghanistan and it's history. So, I went to the library and came home with this.

I think this is an important book for anyone who wants to understand the Taliban, the Middle East, and the United States' history of foreign policy choices in that region. It is particularly interesting because it was written in 2000, a year before the 9/11 attacks. This fact alone contributes to its authenticity, and untainted journalism.

By reading this book, I learned that the problems the United States currently has in the region are in many ways self-inflicted, ironically, by choices made during the early 90's, even though we didn't reap the full measure until after the turn of the century. I also leanred that foreign policy id a tricky business. In some instances, the thought comes to me, "How could we have known?" The United States supported the Taliban with money and weapons in the late 80's early 90's, because they were fighting against our "enemy", Russia. Talk about backfire.

I actually think this should be required reading for all U.S. citizens. Having said that, it is a non-fiction work, dense with facts and sometimes confusing, simply because the stuff going on in the Central Asian Regions IS confusing...but enlightening, nonetheless.

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