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Newsweek: Unbiased Listing Of Iraq Books

An objective and unbiased selection of books on Iraq from the foreign policy experts at the DNC's in-house magazine Newsweek:

Sampling on Iraq

To explain the situation in Iraq requires writers ranging from soldiers to statesmen to scholars to reporters to a 24-year-old out-of-work computer programmer.

Local residents try to extinguish a fire in the center of Fallujah in the early morning of Oct. 12, 2004 following a U.S. airstrike. A U.S. warplane destroyed a popular restaurant that the U.S. command said was a meeting place for members of Iraq's most feared terrorist organization.

(Bilal Hussein, AP)

Oct. 27, 2006 – Just one of the frightening things about Iraq is how fast the publishing industry has responded with a ballooning shelf of books on the war and related subjects. To help you cut through the chaff and get to the truly essential books on the subject, here’s a selection suggested by NEWSWEEK staffers:

The End of Iraq: How American Incompetence Created a War Without End by Peter W. Galbraith (Simon & Schuster) A U.S. diplomat argues that the invasion effectively destroyed the idea of a unified Iraq and that the U.S. should now devote its efforts to brokering autonomy—geographical and governmental—for the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds.



Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq by Thomas E. Ricks (Penguin) A stunning recounting of how the mission has lacked a strategy from the very beginning. The best account of the dysfunction and disregard in Washington, as well as the admitted mistakes of the military in Iraq—and its laudable (and often thwarted) attempts to fix things on the ground. Meanders a bit in the last third of the book.




Generation Kill by Evan Wright (Putnam) Wright, a reporter for Rolling Stone, doesn't pull any punches describing the chaos and mayhem he went through while embedded with a Marine recon unit during the "Thunder Run" to Baghdad in 2003. Detailed and insightful, this book is an excellent account of the videogame generation at war.




My War: Killing Time in Iraq by Colby Buzzell (Putnam) A first-person account from a young soldier (and self admitted skate punk and wise ass) who was based in Mosul with a Stryker brigade. This book pulls together dispatches from Buzzell's blog, also called My War, which got him into a lot of trouble with Army superiors. A gritty, obnoxious and often hilarious account of what many soldiers go through on a daily basis in Iraq.



Cobra II: The Inside Story of the Invasion and Occupation of Iraq by Michael R. Gordon and Bernard E. Trainor (Pantheon) Invading Iraq, the U.S. military fought a war on two fronts: against Saddam Hussein and against the suits and ideologues in Washington. Gordon, a New York Times reporter, and Trainor, a retired Marine lieutenant general, do a superb job of narrating the invasion, including pointing out that some of the heaviest opposition came from insurgent forces, much of it foreign, from the very beginning.


The Assassins’ Gate: America in Iraq by George Packer (Farrar, Straus & Giroux) The top “what went wrong” book about the invasion and the ideological underpinnings of the war, it approaches the limit of what any American can truly understand about Iraq.


The One Percent Doctrine by Ron Suskind (Simon & Schuster) A clunky and melodramatic write, but some of the best reporting on the true and the overrated threats post 9/11, as well as the illegal wiretapping program.





State of Denial: Bush at War Part III by Bob Woodward (Simon & Schuster) Going back for a third look at the Bush administration’s prosecution of the Iraq war effort, the Washington Post’s senior investigative reporter finds much more to criticize this time around.




Hubris: The Inside Story of Spin, Scandal and the Selling of the Iraq War by Michael Isikoff and David Corn (Crown) Reporters for NEWSWEEK and The Nation, respectively, Isikoff and Corn identify and diagram all the bogus evidence used to push the U.S. into Iraq—from phony Nigerian yellowcake to Mohammed Atta’s nonexistent meetings with Iraqi intelligence—but their most devastating evidence illuminates a governmental culture where people who knew better were silenced, marginalized or ignored.



Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside Iraq’s Green Zone by Rajiv Chandrasekaran (Knopf) The history of Paul Bremer’s Coalition Provisional Authority, written by the Washington Post’s Baghdad bureau chief, is a devastating indictment of the U.S. effort to pacify Iraq.




The Prince of the Marshes: And Other Occupational Hazards of a Year in Iraq by Rory Stewart (Harcourt) Appointed a regional governor by the Coalition government 2003, Stewart writes with wit, shrewdness and self-deprecation what it was like to navigate a world full of clan leaders, Islamic militants, bureaucrats and intelligence agents, all of them jockeying for power and influence.



Overthrow: America’s Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq by Stephen Kinzer (Times Books) The New York Times reporter puts it all in context: a century’s worth of highhandedness has resulted in a less stable world and a world where the United States rarely got what it sought in the long run.



Blood Money: Wasted Billions, Lost Lives and Corporate Greed in Iraq by T. Christian Miller (Little, Brown) Halliburton may have gouged the taxpayer on the way to delivering goods and services to U.S. troops in Iraq, but at least it delivered, which is more than Los Angeles Times reporter Miller can say for most of the contractors servicing the war. How did the country that created the Marshall Plan screw this up so badly? Miller doesn’t have a clear answer, but he has a sickening list of stories about how greed and incompetence have triumphed.



Baghdad Burning: Girl Blog from Iraq by Riverbend (Feminist Press at CUNY) A few months after the U.S. toppled Saddam’s regime, a 24-year-old woman writing pseudonymously as Riverbend began blogging in Iraq. A former computer programmer whose family was comparatively well off, she supplies an endless entertaining and educational look at life in the fractured nation. Often furious, always fascinating on daily Iraqi life. There is also a “Baghdad Burning II,” more of Riverbend's blog postings.


The Foreigner’s Gift: The Americans, the Arabs and the Iraqis in Iraq by Fouad Ajami (Free Press) One of the world’s foremost authorities on Middle East politics, Ajami looks at Iraq both before and after the U.S. invasion and creates a beautifully informed picture of a region exhibiting both old and new stress lines and fractures.




The Shia Revival: How Conflicts Within Islam Will Shape the Future by Vali Nasr (Norton) Nasr, professor of Mideast and South Asian politics at the Naval Postgraduate School, lucidly lays out the schisms and fault lines in the Islamic world, concentrating on how the reconfiguration of power after the U.S. invasion of Iraq decidedly affected the powers of the Shiite population, although they only compose 15 percent of the worldwide Muslim population.


Night Draws Near by Anthony Shadid (Holt) One of the few books that focuses on the lives of ordinary Iraqis. Shadid, a Washington Post reporter who won a Pulitzer for his Iraq coverage, offers a touching street-level portrait of the impact of the war. A fine counterpoint to many of the wonky tomes about Iraq that have flooded bookshelves.


What an objective presentation of the war in Iraq, huh?

You may recognize the name of the Associated Press photographer, Bilal Hussein, credited for that picture from Falujah at the top. As we have noted previously, Mr. Hussein is in the news for being held by the US military forces in Iraq due to being a terrorist his close ties to terrorism.

Of course the other contributors Newsweek applauds don't have to worry about such things. Being for the most part US citizens, and journalists at that, their efforts to help our enemies are risk free. Indeed, they are applauded and highly paid for their treason.

Just as Mr. Hussein will be for his noble work, once he gets out of custody and signs his book deal.

Please remember Newsweek and the rest of these people who hate our country so vehemently on November 7th.

This article was posted by Steve on Saturday, October 28th, 2006. Comments are currently closed.

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