Richard Clarke offers up his own, personal, experience of our government recognizing and dealing with the war on terrorism; in particular, our war with Usama Bin Laded and his Al Qaeda network. He tracks the history of this group and our growing awareness of what are their goals. Because of our relationship with Saudi Arabia and continued military presence in the Middle East, Bin Laden has considered us a threat to his world and has declared war on us. In the early stages of this war, Clarke demonstrates, many of our terrorists attacks were not correctly attributed to him. But as the truth began to become more apparent, our desire to attack and extinguish this threat escalated. Yes, the Bush Administration is taken to task for not heading the advice of the Clinton administration. This is not an unqualified accusation, Clarke was in the trenches from the beginning of this war and watched its importance get set aside for other priorities. It is not an outright attack on the Bush administration, as some seem to claim, rather a thorough analysis of each administration?s priority with terrorism. To dismiss this book as partisan rhetoric, would be extremely ignorant of what Clarke is trying to accomplish and put forth. This is an important work on understanding how best to fight this terrorist war.
Clarke does an excellent job of narrating his book and offers chilling first-hand accounts of the tragedy of 9/11. His analysis of attacks and our responses is even-handed, detailed, and very illuminating. This is an important book not solely because of the ?press? it has gotten, but because of the tremendous insight it offers into the working of our government and the people who work within it. I highly recommend it.
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