'Provides a nuanced micro-level view of the country... One of the most significant contributions ... is the insight into the modus operandi of the insurgency.' --Foreign Affairs 'Provides a nuanced micro-level view of the country... One of the most significant contributions ... is the insight into the modus operandi of the insurgency.' Foreign Affairs 'An outstanding and important collection - just the sort of locally specific, openly debatable, scholarly analysis ... that will be required more and more if the international community is ever to understand the insurgents and divine how to prevent a second Taliban revolution... as up-to-date as scholarship can be.' Steve Coll (Pullitzer Prize-winner) in The New Yorker, November 2009 Some evidence that the Taliban have moved on since they were in power is provided by Antonio Giustozzi, who has edited a collection of essays entitled Decoding the New Taliban... Giustozzi argues that the Taliban realise their old position on education was self-defeating and lost them support, and the line is now being reversed. In Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand, according to Tom Coghlan, one of Giustozzi's contributors, people in September 2008 'reported a strikingly less repressive interpretation of the Taliban's social edicts.' They no longer ban TV, music, dog-fighting and kite-flying; nor do they insist on the old rule that men grow beards long enough to be held in the fist.' Jonathan Steele, London Review of BooksVom Verlag:
While the 'New Taliban' looms large in the global media, little is known about how it functions as an organisation. How united is it? Are its structures relatively strong, or surprisingly brittle? Are personal relations and networking based on traditional ties of kin and ethnicity the sum total of its organisational capabilities, or are efforts underway to build more institutionalised chains of command? How united is the New Taliban, and how does it maintain whatever degree of unity it has, given the attrition it has suffered in the field? And to what extent is its leadership able to impose switches in strategy among the rank-and- file, given Afghanistan's difficult geography and poor communications? These are among the questions answered in this book by a renowned cast of practitioners, journalists and academics, all of whom have long field experience of the latest phase of the New Taliban's insurgency in Afghanistan. "Decoding the New Taliban" includes a number of detailed studies of specific regions or provinces, which for different reasons are especially significant for the Taliban and for understanding their expansion. Alongside these regional studies, the volume includes thematic analyses of negotiating with the Taliban, the Taliban's propaganda effort and its strategic vision.
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