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"It is not simply a good book about history. It is one of those books which makes history. ... "
-- Vladimir Bukovsky, co-founder of the Soviet dissident movement and author of Judgment in Moscow, and Pavel Stroilov, author of Behind the Desert Storm.
"Diana West is distinguished from almost all political commentators because she seeks less to defend ideas and proposals than to investigate and understand what happens and what has happened. This gives her modest and unpretentious books and articles the status of true scientific inquiry, shifting the debate from the field of liking and disliking to being and non-being."
-- Olavo de Carvalho
If you're looking for something to read, this is the most dazzling, mind-warping book I have read in a long time. It has been criticized by the folks at Front Page, but they don't quite get what Ms. West has set out to do and accomplished. I have a whole library of books on communism, but -- "Witness" excepted -- this may be the best.
-- Jack Cashill, author of Deconstructing Obama: The Lives, Loves and Letters of America's First Postmodern President and First Strike: TWA Flight 800 and the Attack on America
"Every once in a while, something happens that turns a whole structure of preconceived ideas upside down, shattering tales and narratives long taken for granted, destroying prejudice, clearing space for new understanding to grow. Diana West's latest book, American Betrayal, is such an event."
-- Henrik Raeder Clausen, Europe News
West's lesson to Americans: Reality can't be redacted, buried, fabricated, falsified, or omitted. Her book is eloquent proof of it.
-- Edward Cline, Family Security Matters
"I have read it, and agree wholeheartedly."
-- Angelo Codevilla, Professor Emeritus of International Relations at Boston Unversity, and fellow of the Claremont Institute.
Enlightening. I give American Betrayal five stars only because it is not possible to give it six.
-- John Dietrich, formerly of the Defense Intelligence Agency and author of The Morgenthau Plan: Soviet Influence on American Postwar Policy.
After reading American Betrayal and much of the vituperation generated by neoconservative "consensus" historians, I conclude that we cannot ignore what West has demonstrated through evidence and cogent argument.
-- John Dale Dunn, M.D., J.D., Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons
"A brilliantly researched and argued book."
-- Edward Jay Epstein, author of Deception: The Invisible War between the KGB and the CIA, The Annals 0f Unsolved Crime
"This explosive book is a long-needed answer to court histories that continue to obscure key facts about our backstage war with Moscow. Must-reading for serious students of security issues and Cold War deceptions, both foreign and domestic."
-- M. Stanton Evans, author of Stalin's Secret Agents and Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America's Enemies
Her task is ambitious; her sweep of crucial but too-little-known facts of history is impressive; and her arguments are eloquent and witty. ... American Betrayal is one of those books that will change the way many of us see the world.
-- Susan Freis Falknor, Blue Ridge Forum
"American Betrayal is absolutely required reading. Essential. You're sleepwalking without it."
-- Chris Farrell, director of investigations research, Judicial Watch
"Diana West wrote a brilliant book called American Betrayal, which I recommend to everybody ... It is a seminal work that will grow in importance."
-- Newt Gingrich, former House Speaker
"This is a must read for any serious student of history and anyone working to understand the Marxist counter-state in America."
-- John Guandolo, president, Understanding the Threat, former FBI special agent
It is myth, or a series of myths, concerning WW2 that Diana West is aiming to replace with history in 2013’s American Betrayal.
If West’s startling revisionism is anywhere near the historical truth, the book is what Nietzsche wished his writings to be, dynamite.
-- Mark Gullick, British Intelligence
“What Diana West has done is to dynamite her way through several miles of bedrock. On the other side of the tunnel there is a vista of a new past. Of course folks are baffled. Few people have the capacity to take this in. Her book is among the most well documented I have ever read. It is written in an unusual style viewed from the perspective of the historian—but it probably couldn’t have been done any other way.”
-- Lars Hedegaard, historian, journalist, founder, Danish Free Press Society
The polemics against your Betrayal have a familiar smell: The masters of the guild get angry when someone less worthy than they are ventures into the orchard in which only they are privileged to harvest. The harvest the outsider brought in, they ritually burn.
-- Hans Jansen, former professor of Islamic Thought, University of Utrecht
No book has ever frightened me as much as American Betrayal. ... [West] patiently builds a story outlining a network of subversion so bizarrely immense that to write it down will seem too fantastic to anyone without the book’s detailed breadth and depth. It all adds up to a story so disturbing that it has changed my attitude to almost everything I think about how the world actually is. ... By the time you put the book down, you have a very different view of America’s war aims and strategies. The core question is, did the USA follow a strategy that served its own best interests, or Stalin’s? And it’s not that it was Stalin’s that is so compelling, since you knew that had to be the answer, but the evidence in detail that West provides that makes this a book you cannot ignore.
-- Steven Kates, RMIT (Australia) Associate Professor of Economics, Quadrant
"Diana West's new book rewrites WWII and Cold War history not by disclosing secrets, but by illuminating facts that have been hidden in plain sight for decades. Furthermore, she integrates intelligence and political history in ways never done before."
-- Jeffrey Norwitz, former professor of counterterrorism, Naval War College
[American Betrayal is] the most important anti-Communist book of our time ... a book that can open people's eyes to the historical roots of our present malaise ... full of insights, factual corroboration, and psychological nuance.
-- J.R. Nyquist, author, Origins of the Fourth World War
Although I know [Christopher] Andrew well, and have met [Oleg] Gordievsky twice, I now doubt their characterization of Hopkins -- also embraced by Radosh and the scholarly community. I now support West's conclusions after rereading KGB: The Inside Story account 23 years later [relevant passages cited in American Betrayal]. It does not ring true that Hopkins was an innocent dupe dedicated solely to defeating the Nazis. Hopkins comes over in history as crafty, secretive and no one's fool, hardly the personality traits of a naïve fellow traveler. And his fingerprints are on the large majority of pro-Soviet policies implemented by the Roosevelt administration. West deserves respect for cutting through the dross that obscures the evidence about Hopkins, and for screaming from the rooftops that the U.S. was the victim of a successful Soviet intelligence operation.
-- Bernie Reeves, founder of The Raleigh Spy Conference, American Thinker
Diana West’s American Betrayal — a remarkable, novel-like work of sorely needed historical re-analysis — is punctuated by the Cassandra-like quality of “multi-temporal” awareness. ... But West, although passionate and direct, is able to convey her profoundly disturbing, multi-temporal narrative with cool brilliance, conjoining meticulous research, innovative assessment, evocative prose, and wit.
-- Andrew G. Bostom, PJ Media
Do not be dissuaded by the controversy that has erupted around this book which, if you insist on complete accuracy, would be characterized as a disinformation campaign.
-- Jed Babbin, The American Spectator
In American Betrayal, Ms. West's well-established reputation for attacking "sacred cows" remains intact. The resulting beneficiaries are the readers, especially those who can deal with the truth.
-- Wes Vernon, Renew America
Wednesday, August 17, 2011 4:04 AM
Gen. David Petraeus, June 23, 2011, in confirmation hearings before the Senate Select Intelligence Committee
In an April 2011 column, I argued that both Barack Obama and the COINdinista Right had good (for them) reasons to perpetuate wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama's reason is obvious. He doesn't want the nation to watch Iraq and Afghanistan falling apart during the 2012 election year. I wrote:
And falling apart -- I call it reverting to type - is the inevitable result of U.S. withdrawal. "Who lost Iraq and Afghanistan?" is not a question Obama wants to answer during the election.
Thus, Obama will slog on with counterinsurgency in stalemate, maintaining his weirdly logical wartime alliance with the neoconservative, democracy-project Right. On Obama's part, this is a political calculation, pure and simple. On the Right, something else is going on.
As long as we are still in Iraq, still in Afghanistan, the policy born of neoconservatism's lights, embraced by nation-building Bushies, promulgated by Gen. David Petraeus, still has a theoretical chance of working.
"Soldiers and Marines are expected to be nation-builders as well as warriors," Petraeus himself co-wrote in the foreword of the 2007 COIN manual (with Gen. James F. Amos,
recently tapped to serve as the new Marine Commandant). "They must be prepared to help re-establish institutions and local security forces and assist in rebuilding infrastructure and basic services. They must be able to facilitate establishing local governance and the rule of law. The list of such tasks is long ..."
You can say that again.
A constant refrain from these camps is that prematurely withdrawing from either country would jeopardize what Petraeus has dubbed for four years "fragile and reversible" security gains.
To them, staying forever is leaving too soon. It isn't so much that in withdrawal lies defeat; it's that in withdrawal lies confirmation of the defeat of their prized counterinsurgency (COIN) strategy. In the strategy's defeat lies the abyss.
And so they must keep reality at bay. And they do that by keeping Iraq and Afghanistan works in progress. As such, it is up to our troops to try harder to win "hearts and minds," walk more IED-strewn patrols, distribute more cash to buy loyalty. In this way, the COINdinistas are hamster-footing it to keep the ride from stopping at any cost. ...
How to keep Iraq and Afghanistan works in progress got easy when Petraeus was confirmed as the new director of the CIA. Such a post presents Petraeus with the temptation to shade and shape intelligence to justify his COIN record of unreckoned disaster -- precisely why he was the wrong man for the job. At Huffington Post, Michael Brenner underscores this terrible potential in a piece imperially titled "I, Petraeus":
General David Petraeus, newly installed Director of the CIA, is now the most influential figure in making American foreign policy. He has unrivaled prestige in Washington and among the public at large, he has close allies in the Pentagon and White House, and receives reflexive deference from President Obama. Moreover, he has vaunting ambition and a steely will -- his boyish looks notwithstanding.
His foremost objectives will be to ensure that the end game in Afghanistan, the tense standoff with Pakistan, and the question of the United States' presence in Iraq in no way detract from his reputation as being the master of counterterrorism who has salvaged a measure of success from those dubious operations. Since that reputation is based on image more than on hard accomplishment, how the game of intelligence appraisal and threat assessment is played will be critically important. Petraeus will not hesitate to use the authority and influence at his disposal to push for actions that improve the odds on avoiding unspinnable outcomes in any of those locales.
He has the means; he has the motives. Will he use them? Brenner thinks so.
Concretely, that points to an all-out campaign to maintain the maximum American presence in Iraq that the leadership in Baghdad can tolerate.
To that end, Brenner notes elsewhere: "There are reports that already he has communicated personally with Prime Minister Maliki, offering in effect his good offices to assist Maliki in finessing an understanding between Baghdad and Washington that would allow some American troops to remain despite fierce opposition from some of his coalition allies. It included an invitation to communicate directly with Petraeus."
That's highly unusual and highly disturbing. "I, Petraeus" continues:
It means pressing ahead in Afghanistan in an unrelenting attempt to weaken the Taliban enough so as to force them into accommodation on terms acceptable to Washington.
Brenner fails to note the equally unrelenting, unrealistic and unworkable COIN attempt to simultaneously nation-build the Islamic population, Pygmalion-like, into something acceptable, period.
It means a no-holds-barred wrestling match with the Pakistani leadership, both to give American forces a free hand in the Northwest and to commit themselves fully to a military campaign against all elements hostile to the United States. To justify these policies, Petraeus will take steps that place the CIA imprimatur on intelligence reports that paint a dark picture of the continuing terrorist danger from the region even while celebrating successes for which he will take full credit. They also will stress the critical stabilizing role of an active American military presence in the [area] running from the Persian Gulf deep into Central Asia. ...
A dire prediection. Will it come true? The fact remains that a gigantic, personal conflict of interest will always taint the Petraeus CIA.