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Best Afghanistan Books You Must Read

Until you’ve consumed all of the best Afghanistan books, can you even claim to be a true fan?

1. Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History (Princeton Studies in Muslim Politics) (2012)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadAfghanistan traces the historic struggles and the changing nature of political authority in this volatile region of the world, from the Mughal Empire in the sixteenth century to the Taliban resurgence today. Thomas Barfield introduces readers to the bewildering diversity of tribal and ethnic groups in Afghanistan, explaining what unites them as Afghans despite the regional, cultural, and political differences that divide them. He shows how governing these peoples was relatively easy when power was concentrated in a small dynastic elite, but how this delicate political order…
Author(s): Thomas Barfield

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadAfghanistan in Kashmir & other stories are based on some real life experiences of the author in Kashmir. While many characters in these stories represent real persons in author’s life, a few have been created around the narration of some real life incidents. Any resemblance of these fictional characters with any actual person (s), dead or alive, is purely coincidental and un-intentional.What prompted the author to write these stories was the question “Nanu, but why did you have to leave Kashmir? And, what are you doing here in Bengaluru, now?” asked one day by his America born teenage…
Author(s): Pran Kachroo

3. Games without Rules: The Often-Interrupted History of Afghanistan (2014)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadFive times in the last two centuries, some great power has tried to invade, occupy, or otherwise take control of Afghanistan. And as Tamim Ansary shows in this illuminating history, every intervention has come to grief in much the same way and for much the same reason: The intervening power has failed to understand that Afghanistan has a story of its own, a story that continues to unfold between, and despite, the interventions. Games without Rules tells this story from the inside looking out. Drawing on his Afghan background, Muslim roots, and Western and Afghan sources, Ansary weaves an epic that…
Author(s): Tamim Ansary

4. Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America’s Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan (2019)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadLonglisted for the 2018 National Book Award for NonfictionFrom the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Ghost Wars, the epic and enthralling story of America’s intelligence, military, and diplomatic efforts to defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan since 9/11Prior to 9/11, the United States had been carrying out small-scale covert operations in Afghanistan, ostensibly in cooperation, although often in direct opposition, with I.S.I., the Pakistani intelligence agency. While the US was trying to quell extremists, a highly…
Author(s): Steve Coll

5. Afghanistan: A Military History from Alexander the Great to the War against the Taliban (2009)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadFor over 2,500 years, the forbidding territory of Afghanistan has served as a vital crossroads for armies and has witnessed history-shaping clashes between civilizations: Greek, Arab, Mongol, and Tartar, and, in more recent times, British, Russian, and American. When U.S. troops entered Afghanistan in the weeks following September 11, 2001, they overthrew the Afghan Taliban regime and sent the terrorists it harbored on the run. But America's initial easy victory is in sharp contrast to the difficulties it faces today in confronting the Taliban…
Author(s): Stephen Tanner

6. Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 (2004)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadTo what extent did America’s best intelligence analysts grasp the rising thread of Islamist radicalism? Who tried to stop bin Laden and why did they fail? Comprehensively and for the first time, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Steve Coll recounts the history of the covert wars in Afghanistan that fueled Islamic militancy and sowed the seeds of the September 11 attacks. Based on scrupulous research and firsthand accounts by key government, intelligence, and military personnel both foreign and American, Ghost Wars details the secret history of…
Author(s): Steve Coll

7. I See the Sun in Afghanistan (3) (2011)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadThrough the eyes of a child, I See the Sun in Afghanistan portrays a culture that emphasizes patriarchal family, love of country and fierce loyalty to family and tribe. Although the story takes place against the backdrop of war, it is not political, but a simple story about one day in the life of a young girl. After waking before dawn, Habiba and her sister go out to fetch water. Following a breakfast of khojur, she tags along with her brother and father as they bring the sheep to pasture. She goes to school outside with other girls; the boys attend school later in the day. Her family is preparing for cousins…
Author(s): Dedie King , Judith Inglese, et al.

8. Najiba: A Love Story from Afghanistan (2019)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadJust weeks after the devastation of September 11, 2001, the media splashed John Weaver's face across TV screens as an aid worker serving on the front line of Afghanistan's civil war. Among the few Americans born in Kabul before the Soviet invasion, Jeanne Bonner returned to her birthplace after 9/11, committed to serve the Afghan people. Neither was searching for love and marriage. But God had His own plans. John and Jeanne's astonishing love story–a match made in heaven–holds the action, drama, suspense, and romance of an exciting epic tale….
Author(s): John Weaver, Jeanette Windle

9. Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan (2017)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must Read“In Fool’s Errand, Scott Horton masterfully explains the tragedy of America’s longest war and makes the case for immediate withdrawal. I highly recommend this excellent book on America’s futile and self-defeating occupation of Afghanistan.” — Daniel Ellsberg, Pentagon Papers whistleblower and author of The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner“The real story of the disastrous U.S. war in Afghanistan must be written so that future generations may understand the folly of Washington’s warmongers. Scott Horton’s Afghan war history is an important contribution to this vital effort.” — Ron…
Author(s): Scott Horton

10. No Way Out: A Story of Valor in the Mountains of Afghanistan (2012)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadIn a remote, enemy-held valley in Afghanistan, a Special Forces team planned to scale a steep mountain to surprise and capture a terrorist leader. But before they found the target, the target found them… The team was caught in a deadly ambush that not only threatened their lives, but the entire mission. The elite soldiers fought huddled for hours on a small rock ledge as rocket-propelled grenades and heavy machine-gun fire rained down on them. With total disregard for their own safety, they tended to their wounded and kept fighting to stay alive. When the battle finally ended, ten…
Author(s): Mitch Weiss, Kevin Maurer

11. Afghanistan: A Russian Soldier’s Story (2001)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadIn 1984 Tamarov, then 19, was drafted into the Soviet Army and posted to Afghanistan where he spent 20 months in a minesweeper outfit. Despite heavy operational responsibilities and danger, he managed to take artful photographs which capture the stark landscape, friendly and unfriendly Afghans and the men of his platoon in action and in repose.Photographs depicting the haunted faces of both soldiers and civilians, the country’s rugged yet beautiful mountain terrain, and the banality of daily life between missions are interspersed with Tamarov’s unsentimental but passionate prose, in which he reveals his growing disorientation and…
Author(s): Vladislav Tamarov

12. The Wars of Afghanistan: Messianic Terrorism, Tribal Conflicts, and the Failures of Great Powers (2013)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadAs Ambassador and Special Envoy on Afghanistan from 1989 to 1992, Peter Tomsen has had close relationships with Afghan leaders and has dealt with senior Taliban, warlords, and religious leaders involved in the region's conflicts over the last two decades. Now Tomsen draws on a rich trove of never-before-published material to shed new light on the American involvement in the long and continuing Afghan war. This book offers a deeply informed perspective on how Afghanistan's history as a “shatter zone” for foreign invaders and its tribal society have shaped the modern Afghan narrative. It brings to…
Author(s): Peter Tomsen

13. Afghanistan: A Memoir From Brooklyn to Kabul (2019)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadAfter having visions of a strange land since childhood, Cat Parenti left New York and headed for the rugged landscape of Afghanistan, which felt like time traveling to the 12th century. There she fell in love with the people, the culture, and a tall, dark stranger.In book one of this sweeping two-volume memoir, Cat takes you on an unforgettable journey of full immersion into the sights, sounds, smells, food, rituals and beliefs of the people she came to know and love in this far off land. Her adventures are told with such exquisite detail, you’ll feel as if you…
Author(s): Cat Parenti

14. First In: An Insider’s Account of How the CIA Spearheaded the War on Terror in Afghanistan (2006)

 Best Afghanistan Books You Must ReadWhile America held its breath in the days immediately following 9/11, a small but determined group of CIA agents covertly began to change history. This is the riveting first-person account of the treacherous top-secret mission inside Afghanistan to set the stage for the defeat of the Taliban and launch the war on terror.As thrilling as any novel, is a uniquely intimate look at a mission that began the U.S. retaliation against terrorism–and reclaimed the country of Afghanistan for its people….
Author(s): Gary Schroen

Best Afghanistan Books You Must Read

We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Genesis and download some afghanistan books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.

Run to the Sound of the Guns: The True Story of an American Ranger at War in Afghanistan and Iraq

Author(s): Nicholas Moore, Mir Bahmanyar
ID: 2394002, Publisher: Osprey Publishing, Year: 29 Nov 2018, Size: 43 Mb, Format: epub

Crafting Masculine Selves : culture, war, and psychodynamics in afghanistan.

Author(s): Chiovenda, Andrea
ID: 2436694, Publisher: OXFORD UNIV PRESS, Year: 2020, Size: 2 Mb, Format: pdf

Imagining Afghanistan : the history and politics of imperial knowledge

Author(s): Nivi Manchanda
ID: 2553672, Publisher: Cambridge University Press, Year: 2020, Size: 4 Mb, Format: pdf

Please note that this booklist is not errorless. Some books are absolutely best-sellers according to Washington Post, others are written by unknown writers. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant books you could recommend? Drop a comment if you have any feedback on the list.

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