Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God

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9781626162013: Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God

Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God is the first thorough examination of Hezbollah's covert activities beyond Lebanon's borders, including its financial and logistical support networks and its criminal and terrorist operations worldwide.

Hezbollah―Lebanon's "Party of God"―is a multifaceted organization: It is a powerful political party in Lebanon, a Shia Islam religious and social movement, Lebanon's largest militia, a close ally of Iran, and a terrorist organization. Drawing on a wide range of sources, including recently declassified government documents, court records, and personal interviews with intelligence and law enforcement officials around the world, Matthew Levitt examines Hezbollah's beginnings, its first violent forays in Lebanon, and then its terrorist activities and criminal enterprises abroad in Europe, the Middle East, South America, Southeast Asia, Africa, and finally in North America. Levitt also describes Hezbollah's unit dedicated to supporting Palestinian militant groups and Hezbollah's involvement in training and supporting insurgents who fought US troops in post-Saddam Iraq. The book concludes with a look at Hezbollah's integral, ongoing role in Iran's shadow war with Israel and the West, including plots targeting civilians around the world.

Levitt shows convincingly that Hezbollah's willingness to use violence at home and abroad, its global reach, and its proxy-patron relationship with the Iranian regime should be of serious concern. Hezbollah is an important book for scholars, policymakers, students, and the general public interested in international security, terrorism, international criminal organizations, and Middle East studies.

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About the Author:

Matthew Levitt is the Fromer-Wexler fellow and director of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy's Stein Program on Counterterrorism and Intelligence. Previously, Levitt served as the deputy assistant secretary for intelligence and analysis at the US Department of the Treasury, as an FBI counterterrorism analyst, and as an adviser on counterterrorism to the US State Department. He is the author of Hamas: Politics, Charity, and Terrorism in the Service of Jihad.


"This comprehensive analysis of Hezbollah is meticulously detailed and made gripping by a flowing narrative."―ForeWord

"Hezbollah is still viewed in some quarters as little more than a parochial Lebanese political party with an armed wing charged solely with resisting an Israeli occupation that ended 13 years ago, on May 25, 2000. It's this myth that Matthew Levitt explodes in Hezbollah....Mr. Levitt's book delivers suspenseful and even terrifying blow-by-blow accounts of the most infamous of Hezbollah's attacks. He can't dramatize all of them, though, because there are too many―far more than most people realize, because until now no one had bothered to document them in one place."―Wall Street Journal, Bookshelf

"A meticulously detailed examination...The book sheds new light on the targeting of Western and Israeli interests in Lebanon and abroad."―The Washington Times

"A wide-ranging portrait of Hezbollah's activities on five continents and its actions."―Library Journal

"Matthew Levitt's Hezbollah . . . is likely to remain the definitive work on Hezbollah's global infrastructure for years to come . . . Levitt's focus on the global aspects of Hezbollah, and on the details of its financing and logistics, make his policy recommendations meaningful and comprehensive."―Studies in Conflict & Terrorism

"A compelling account of the global terror group's operations...as rich in detail as it is in storytelling...The compelling narrative leaves readers wondering how it is possible that this organization has grown so powerful and influential with few repercussions."―The Jerusalem Post

"Levitt's account is as rich in detail as it is in storytelling."―The Jerusalem Post

"Levitt's exhaustive study successfully breaks down the organization's intricate web of activities, both in and out of the Middle East . . . . Levitt's book is a timely reminder of how dangerous and widespread the genie of Hezbollah truly is, and why there needs to be a concerted global effort to get it back into the bottle."―Journal of International Security Affairs

"Authoritative and immensely important new book."―Commentary

"This book's meticulous documentation of Hezbollah's terrorist and criminal enterprises makes it required reading for all those concerned about understanding its true nature."―Perspectives on Terrorism

"If you combine the detective work of an N.C.I.S. episode and the excitement of a Daniel Silva novel with the Mission Impossible theme in the background, you can approximate the narrative provided in this important book."―Jewish Book Council

"Levitt's exhaustive study successfully breaks down the organization's intricate web of activities, both in and out of the Middle East. His know-how of the Washington Beltway and the intelligence agencies that populate it allow Levitt to cogently and compellingly make the case that the group poses a truly worldwide threat."―Journal of International Security Affairs

"Matthew Levitt's refreshing study of the history and development of Hezbollah's international network and operational track record provides a convincing profile of a highly professional group whose scope extends far beyond the confines of Lebanese politics."―Richard Phelps, Quilliam Foundation, Terrorism and Political Violence

"Useful, meticulously researched and documented."―Australia/Israel Review

"A 426 page compendium providing the non-specialist general reader with an excellent and documented history of this Islamic militant organization and its present activities throughout the world. Enhanced with an extensive bibliography and a comprehensive index . . . especially recommended for both community and academic library International Studies in general, and Terrorism Studies in particular."―Midwest Book Review

"Levitt's coverage of Hezbollah's illegal and criminal operations on American soil mightily increases the value of this useful, well-written book."―Choice

"Levitt creatively deploys his deep knowledge coupled with the scrupulous collection, analysis, and exploitation of information and intelligence in support of his arguments against Hezbollah . . . . the result is a book imbued with invaluable insights into the inner workings, not only of Hezbollah, but also of the tactics, shortcomings and successes of the American intelligence services."―Gamal Nkrumah, Al-Ahram Weekly

"A rich literature about Hezbollah covering its variety of operational modes. Matthew Levitt's comprehensive work contributes significantly to our understanding of one of the most dangerous and sophisticated terrorist groups in the world. Through rigorous research written in approachable, sometimes poetic language, Levitt takes us on a journey through the worldwide activities of Hezbollah . . . . The book uses varied sources, some of them available to the research community for the first time. Levitt's use of declassified CIA and FBI documents combined with exclusive interviews with senior officials of the intelligence community and decision makers from different places around the world provides us with a unique perspective on how Hezbollah's global terrorist activities are perceived by western states and governments . . . . Levitt's well-written and well-structured book reveals many attention-grabbing details that contribute to understanding Hezbollah's global operations."―Ido Zelkovitz, Middle Eastern Studies

"A worthwhile read for anyone interested in Hezbollah, or Iran's links with terrorist groups."―E-International Relations

"First comprehensive examination of Hezbollah (Party of God) from its beginning to the present."―The Intelligencer

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