FINALLY -- IN AUDIOBOOK!
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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
“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 10, 2011 6:19 AM
Times of London photo: Admiral William McRaven on Nanawate Day, 2010
From the St Pete Times:
Just days after 30 U.S. troops, including 22 Navy SEALs, died when their helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan, Adm. William McRaven took the helm of U.S. Special Operations Command in a somber ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base.
McRaven, 55, who oversaw and helped plan the mission that killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan earlier this year, replaces Adm. Eric Olson, 59, who is retiring after serving four years as SOCom's chief.
McRaven, McRaven ... that names rings a bell.
Admiral McRaven is the US Navy admiral who, along with US Army Brigadier General Kurt Fuller, surrendered himself in local Afghan terms to the head of a family who lost five members during a raid by US forces in 2010. Accompanied by 30 Afghan soldiers (no US forces on this mission), they brought with them two sheep and offered to "enact the tribal ritual nanawate, in which a sheep is sacrificed at the door," the Times of London reported -- much to the apparent consternation of McRaven. And that would be consternation over the presence of the Times, it seems, not so much the nanawate, which, accompanied by Islamic prayers, became a tribal and Islamic ritualized surrender ceremony. The sheep, incidentally, were spared.
Going back to that sorry story today, I read an ABC report that I had missed earlier. It recounted the sequence of events leading up to the forgiveness ceremony.
On Feb. 12, NATO emailed a statement to reporters with the subject line, "Joint force operating in Gardez makes gruesome discovery."
"Several insurgents engaged the joint force in a fire fight and were killed," the statement read. "When the joint force entered the compound they conducted a thorough search of the area, and found the bodies of three women who had been tied up, gagged and killed. The bodies had been hidden in an adjacent room."
When that story was challenged by the family, senior NATO officials vociferously defended the incident, criticizing a reporter who quoted the family in a story and claiming the women had defensive wounds, an implication that they had been killed by their own family.
But family members and now Afghan investigators accuse the American and Afghan special forces unit of trying to cover up the deaths.
"They committed a crime on top of a crime," says the head of the Afghan team investigating the incident, Gen. Mohammad Mirza Yarmand.
They said, they said: Who's right?
Tahir goes even further, saying he saw American troops extract bullets from the women's bodies, an explosive charge in a conservative country where American troops are generally told to avoid interacting with women, especially in southern and eastern Afghanistan.
Mohammad Tahir is the brother and father of three of those killed.
"I saw Americans taking bullets out of the body of my sister-in-law and they were pushing me away from the scene," Tahir said. "When I told them, 'Let me take them to hospital,' they said, 'Don't worry, the helicopter will be coming and we will take care of them.'"
Yarmand says the family found one bullet that was left inside one of the women.
A military spokesman denies any cover-up, saying in a statement to ABC News, "We have discovered no evidence that any of our forces did anything to manipulate the evidence or the bodies at the scene," according to Lt. Col. Joseph Breasseale, the deputy chief of public affairs for NATO forces in Kabul.
But the incident so inflamed the family, the father initially vowed to take revenge, "even if it breaks me into pieces."
"I have lost patience. I am obliged to revenge my martyrs," he told an ABC News cameraman on March 18. "I will destroy everything I have and will launch my own suicide attack. My heart is burning."
But today the father forgave, a lesson in the importance of cultural sensitivity, especially in a region dominated by people who follow a strict, centuries-old set of principles known as Pashtunwali.
Rather, it is a demonstration of the Pentagon's policy of prostrating senior brass to tribal and Islamic custom as a strategic point of COIN. (An Afghan officer also passed $30,000 to the grieving family.) Understatement of the decade: It's not working.
The story continued:
McRaven asked for that forgiveness -- an act called Nanawati in Pashto -- one day after Afghan investigators presented their findings of the incident to Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the head of all foreign forces in Afghanistan.
Oh, to see that Afghan report, compare it to the NATO report, and be able to investigate the incident to a point of certainty in determining which truly matches events. This wasn't McChrystal's goal, it seems to fair to say. Either that's because the Afghan report was convincing, or he, as top commander, decided it served COIN strategy to pretend that it was. In other words, what I didn't consider the first time around is that it's possible these civilian casualties were not US inflicted, but McChrystal decided to order his senior people to prostrate themselves anyway in order to defuse the situation, COIN style. We just don't know for sure. We do know, however, that this same Petraeus-McChrystal-Mullen strategy has made a fetish out of reducing such casualties, even to a point of denying US and ISAF forces air support and other means to come out of their COIN war alive. What's sending an admiral and a general (plus sheep) to engage in a tribal and Islamic ritual of forgiveness?
Or, rather, ordering. As ABC further reported:
McChrystal ordered McRaven to go for Nanawati, according to a U.S. military official, who said this was not the first time American troops have performed such an act.
McChrystal has made reducing civilian casualties a cornerstone of his policy since arriving in Kabul late last spring, an acknowledgement that perhaps more than any other action, civilian deaths can push Afghans away from the government and toward the insurgency.
The "insurgency" was responsible for 75 percent of civilian casualties in 2010. ISAF forces were responsible for 16 percent of civilian casualties in 2010. It is non-sense to go on claiming that civilian casualties are the wedge between ISAF and Afghan hearts and minds.
That won't stop the COIN-bots. At this point, they have too much invested in COIN to change. Ever.