Rory Stewart really captures the conflicts and how using cookie cutter UN mediated scripts do not work. Being a veteran of three tours of Iraq I saw this first hand. Every village, every city, every farm had to be dealt with differently. This is th third book I have read from Rory and it was as great as those. If you like reading a different take on the wars of "occupation" then you will love this book. I highly recommend lookig into his other books. Those are great reads as well.
This book is full of thought provoking questions about the concept of foreign interventions. Why should we intervene? Why do interventions go wrong? The author does a great job at analyzing the assumptions we make about intervening. There so many great quotes of the book. I think the most profound part about this book is the author's humility. He even writes in the book, there is no magic formula to solve all these problems. There some things we just do not have the answers for in life. I would recommend this to anyone interested in foreign policy, Bosnia, and world history.
Rory Stewart is a Scotsman with a passion for people and unique knowledge of Afghanistan while co-author Gerald Knaus provides us some supportive counterbalance with his first-person experiences in Bosnia. What results are the lessons of our continued failure in Afghanistan and once again a much-needed wakeup call. Can Intervention Work? (Amnesty International Global Ethics Series) is a riveting account of what went wrong both in Kabul and Washington and should be required reading for every American. It is important for us to properly focus on Afghanistan, to resolve what still confronts us there and to finally move forward quickly and leave Afghanistan to its people. Stewart's writing should help you to understand and accept why we have already failed, contrary to the open question that's posed by the title.
My ongoing interest in our Middle East efforts had drawn me back to Stewart's up front perspectives once again. His personal experiences in the Balkans, Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq have enabled his spot-on understanding and his blunt communication of what he sees. Are our leaders so blind? His assessment of the systemic problems existing within today's international policy process should not be ignored any longer. His is a unique and all encompassing look. Our policy of Fear must be abandoned.
The historian in Stewart draws upon our past failures in Vietnam and includes reminders of the British experiences in Afghanistan in the 1800s and in Iraq in the 1900s. Some of his descriptions include the actions of an assortment of the leaders involved [in their own words] along with the discussions of key figures like Holbrook and Petraeus. His summary of Military Optimism [pp. 50-57] is classic and should help to drive home how surreal the problem is and how difficult it is to define and qualify even in the words of the policymakers. His is a voice of uncommon reason that deserves your full attention.
Bob Magnant is the author of 'The Last Transition...', a fact-based novel about politics, the Internet and US policy in the Middle East...
These two essays give more insight on real world the mechanics of intervention than most academic papers do, simply because it is written by officials that are not only academic "experts" but that understand the local realities, cultures,customs and way of thinking. Though sometimes a bit confusing in the outlay, this is a must read for anyone who is interested in modern world geopolitics (and everyone should be).
GREAT BOOK BY STEWART AND KNAUS.IT CLEARLY EXPLAINS WHY MOST INTERVENTIONS FAILS. STEWART SHOWS THE IMPORTANCE OF TRAVELING IN COUNTRIES GOING THROUGH POLITICAL UNREST, TO BE ABLE TO UNDERSTAND THEIR CULTURE. LATELY MOST INTERVENTIONS HAS BEEN DONE WITH THIS PLATAFORM--NOT UNDERSTADING WHERE WE ARE GOING. PLANIFIED BY BUREOCRATS WHO NEVER HAVE SEEN THE NATION BEING INVADED. STEWART DESCRIBES THIS CLEARLY. THE PEOPLE WHO RUNS US SHOULD BE GIVEN BOOKS AND SOME TRAVELING TO THESE AGITATED CULTURES BEFORE GETTING INVOLVED IN SUCH ADVENTURES
Loved Rory Stewart's earlier books. This reads very well, but as an unfinished report more than a "book". It should of course be compulsory reading not just for the people running or contemplating any "interventions" but also for us who have to cast our votes or express our opinions. Be cautious, be humble