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"This explosive book is a long-needed answer to court histories that continue to obscure key facts about our backstage war with Moscow. Must-reading for serious students of security issues and Cold War deceptions, both foreign and domestic."
-- M. Stanton Evans, author of Stalin's Secret Agents and Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America's Enemies
"[West] only claims `to connect the dots,' which is a very modest description of the huge and brilliant work she has obviously done. ... It is not simply a good book about history. It is one of those books which makes history."
-- Vladimir Bukovsky, author of To Build a Castle and co-founder of the Soviet dissident movement, and Pavel Stroilov, author of Behind the Desert Storm.
"Every once in a while, something happens that turns a whole structure of preconceived ideas upside down, shattering tales and narratives long taken for granted, destroying prejudice, clearing space for new understanding to grow. Diana West's latest book, American Betrayal, is such an event."
-- Henrik Raeder Clausen, Europe News
"No book has ever frightened me as much as American Betrayal. ... It all adds up to a story so disturbing that it has changed my attitude to almost everything I think about how the world actually is."
-- Steven Kates, Quadrant
“What Diana West has done is to dynamite her way through several miles of bedrock. On the other side of the tunnel there is a vista of a new past. Of course folks are baffled. Few people have the capacity to take this in. Her book is among the most well documented I have ever read. It is written in an unusual style viewed from the perspective of the historian—but it probably couldn’t have been done any other way.”
-- Lars Hedegaard, historian, editor, Dispatch International
"Diana West's new book rewrites WWII and Cold War history not by disclosing secrets, but by illuminating facts that have been hidden in plain sight for decades. Furthermore, she integrates intelligence and political history in ways never done before."
-- Jeffrey Norwitz, former professor of counterterrorism, Naval War College
Do not be dissuaded by the controversy that has erupted around this book which, if you insist on complete accuracy, would be characterized as a disinformation campaign.
-- Jed Babbin, The American Spectator
Enlightening. I give American Betrayal five stars only because it is not possible to give it six."
-- John Dietrich, formerly of the Defense Intelligence Agency and author of The Morgenthau Plan: Soviet Influence on American Postwar Policy.
"Diana West masterfully reminds us of what history is for: to suggest action for the present. She paints for us the broad picture of our own long record of failing to recognize bullies and villains. She shows how American denial today reflects a pattern that held strongly in the period of the Soviet Union. She is the Michelangelo of Denial.”
-- Amity Shlaes, author of Coolidge and The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression
If you're looking for something to read, this is the most dazzling, mind-warping book I have read in a long time. It has been criticized by the folks at Front Page, but they don't quite get what Ms. West has set out to do and accomplished. I have a whole library of books on communism, but -- "Witness" excepted -- this may be the best.
-- Jack Cashill, author of Deconstructing Obama: The Lives, Loves and Letters of America's First Postmodern President and First Strike: TWA Flight 800 and the Attack on America
American Betrayal is a monumental achievement. Brilliant and important.
-- Monica Crowley, Fox News analyst, radio host and author of What the Bleep Just Happened: The Happy Warriors Guide to the Great American Comeback
"If you haven't read Diana West's "American Betrayal" yet, you're missing out on a terrific, real-life thriller."
-- Brad Thor, author of the New York Times bestsellers Hidden Order, Black List and The Last Patriot.
Friday, April 29, 2011 7:04 AM
This week's syndicated column:
Even before the carnage inside Kabul airport was sorted and identified, before the squads of sober officers were deployed to inform stateside next of kin, and before the caskets were filled, closed, and draped with flags for the final flight home, this much we knew: Another Afghan Muslim "partner" in uniform -- a veteran Air Force pilot -- had opened fire on NATO trainers in a meeting, killing eight U.S. military personnel and an American contractor.
Question: Will our U.S. representatives -- and those of the deceased -- pay attention to this latest Afghan attack on Americans? If so, will they a) yawn; b) cluck; c) raise hell; d) none of the above?
The fact is, these murders are not "just one of those things" -- the unfortunate outcome of a "disagreement," or even "financial pressures" as mentioned, straight-faced, in early reports. These ritualistic murders of Westerners, like similar assaults before them, are the most shocking manifestations of our foundationally flawed policy of nation-building in the Islamic world. They are some of the flesh-and-blood sacrifices to the make-believe "Democracy Project," whose postmodern-day missionaries believe must be advanced on the backs of the U.S. military according to the quasi-holy doctrine of counterinsurgency (COIN).
It's way past time to call it off. The simplest reason is because it's crazy, and probably literally so in a certifiable sense. We, the people, have empowered elected officials to order our military forces to risk their lives not for our country but for a theory. A theory based on the absurd premise that the Western way is also the "universal" way. A theory whose practitioners must suppress logic, historical knowledge, moral principle and, most basic of all, survival instinct. And that's crazy.
Consider this evidence from the Clarksville (Tenn.) Leaf Chronicle. Last week, the newspaper sent a reporter to witness a bizarre event that tragically defines our age: a Fort Campbell send-off for troops en route to Afghanistan to "partner" with Afghan "allies," one of whom had just killed five U.S. troops, also from Fort Campbell (a separate killing spree). The story's headline is "NCOs offer stern message for war-bound soldiers." That message is, "Don't trust anyone but you still have to partner up."
The crazy thing is, "trust" is the essence of "partnering up," particularly when live ammunition is involved. Which is why this order, this policy, is irrational. Pvt. Buddy McLain knew as much. In late 2010, the 24-year-old expressed misgivings about arming Afghan trainees to his wife; one week later, he and five other U.S. troops (also from Fort Campbell) were dead, murdered by one such "partner" after drinking tea with him. End of story? Nope. Where our leaders are concerned, it was just another chapter.
The Leaf Chronicle reporter tries to explain the inexplicable: "Those twin messages can seem confusing to a 19-year-old soldier, which is why the senior noncommissioned officers will have to train the junior NCOs to deliver both messages effectively and maintain the balance the mission requires."
In other words, the U.S. military will have to make schizophrenia the new normal. And that's really crazy. Ex-Marine John Bernard of the blog Let Them Fight pointed out to me that nowhere else in society does "doing your job require this dual mentality." Bernard, whose son Lance Cpl. Joshua Bernard was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2010, further noted that such fractured orders are "an indication of just how convoluted ... the entire mission is." After all, he added, Afghan army and police "are from that segment of society that we had already deemed to be the good guys and should have an expectation of peaceful coexistence. We don't." Our soldiers "should not be dealing with this level of uncertainty at this state in the operation, period." If the strategy were correct to begin with, he explained, we would have already defeated the enemy.
What, if anything, will Congress do about this scandal? So far, we see nothing but almost heel-clicking adulation, inexhaustible patience and an open purse for the generals, the policymakers and their crazy strategy. But how many more U.S. troops will die in an airport office or at a tea table "mentoring" a never-never Afghan security force that our exit supposedly depends on before lawmakers notice the whole big, beautiful theory just isn't working? Is it really too much for them to hold a hearing to try to find out why not, who's responsible, and what we should do instead?