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Al-Qaida in Afghanistan
Published by Cambridge University Press Virtual Publishing
This book presents an alternative narrative of al-Qaida's aims, goals and strategies prior to the events of 9/11.
Since 9/11, al-Qaida has become one of the most infamous and widely discussed terrorist organizations in the world, with affiliates spread across the globe. However, little-known are the group's activities within Afghanistan itself, something which Anne Stenersen examines in this book. Using an array of unique primary sources, she presents an alternative narrative of al-Qaida's goals and strategies prior to 9/11. She argues that al-Qaida's actions were not just an ideological expression of religious fanaticism and violent anti-Americanism, but that they were actually far more practical and organised, with a more revolutionary and Middle Eastern-focused agenda than previously thought. Through Stenersen's analysis, we see how al-Qaida employed a dual strategy: with a small section focused on staging international terrorist attacks, but at the same time a larger part dedicated to building a resilient and cohesive organization that would ultimately serve as a vanguard for future Islamist revolutions.
1. Vanguards; 2. Training under pressure; 3. Return of the Sheikh; 4. The troublesome guest; 5. Training under the Taliban; 6. Taliban's policies towards the Arabs; 7. Frontline participation; 8. International terrorism; 9. Al-Qaida's dual strategy; Epilogue.
Reviewer: Caleb Simmons
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