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So much to read, so little time? This brief overview of Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS tells you what you need to know—before or after you read Joby Warrick’s book. Crafted and edited with care, Worth Books set the standard for quality and give you the tools you need to be a well-informed reader. This short summary and analysis of Black Flags includes: Historical context Chapter-by-chapter overviews Profiles of the main characters Detailed timeline of key events Important quotes Fascinating trivia Glossary of terms Supporting material to enhance your understanding of the original work About Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS by Joby Warrick: Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Joby Warrick has written an authoritative account of the origins and rapid ascent of the largest global terrorist organization today: the Islamic State. Drawing on hundreds of interviews with US and Middle Eastern intelligence officials, as well as two decades of experience covering global terrorism, Warrick presents portraits of the group’s leadership, including the “godfather” of ISIS, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and of its current leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Warrick explains the historical context and the sectarian struggles behind the rise of the Islamic State, the missteps by US intelligence that aided it, and the heroic work by intelligence and military officials that have fought against it. His work explains the appeal of ISIS and the threat it poses to the Middle East and global peace. The summary and analysis in this ebook are intended to complement your reading experience and bring you closer to a great work of nonfiction.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Worth Books
Publisher: Open Road Media
Release: 2017-03-14
File: 30 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781504044820

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"When he succeeded his father in 1999, King Abdullah of Jordan released a batch of political prisoners in the hopes of smoothing his transition to power. Little did he know that among those released was Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a man who would go on to become a terrorist mastermind too dangerous even for al-Qaeda and give rise to an Islamist movement bent on dominating the Middle East. Zarqawi began by directing hotel bombings and assassinations in Jordan from a base in northern Iraq, but it was the American invasion of that country in 2003 that catapulted him to the head of a vast insurgency. By identifying him as the link between Saddam and bin Laden, the CIA inadvertently created a monster. Like-minded radicals saw him as a hero resisting the infidel occupiers and rallied to his cause. Their wave of brutal beheadings and suicide bombings continued for years until Jordanian intelligence provided the Americans with the crucial intelligence needed to eliminate Zarqawi in a 2006 airstrike. But his movement endured, first called al-Qaeda in Iraq, then renamed Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, seeking refuge in unstable, ungoverned pockets on the Iraq-Syria border. And as the Syrian civil war broke out in 2011, ISIS seized its chance to pursue Zarqawi's dream of a sweeping, ultra-conservative Islamic caliphate. Drawing on unique access to CIA and Jordanian sources, Joby Warrick weaves together heart-pounding, moment-by-moment operational details with overarching historical perspectives to reveal the long trajectory of today's most dangerous Islamic extremist threat"--

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Joby Warrick
Publisher: Anchor
Release: 2016
File: 384 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780804168939

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The Islamic State is one of the most lethal and successful jihadist groups in modern history, surpassing even al-Qaeda. Thousands of its followers have marched across Syria and Iraq, subjugating millions, enslaving women, beheading captives, and daring anyone to stop them. Thousands more have spread terror beyond the Middle East under the Islamic State's black flag. How did the Islamic State attract so many followers and conquer so much land? By being more ruthless, more apocalyptic, and more devoted to state-building than its competitors. The shrewd leaders of the Islamic State combined two of the most powerful yet contradictory ideas in Islam-the return of the Islamic Empire and the end of the world-into a mission and a message that shapes its strategy and inspires its army of zealous fighters. They have defied conventional thinking about how to wage wars and win recruits. Even if the Islamic State is defeated, jihadist terrorism will never be the same. Based almost entirely on primary sources in Arabic-including ancient religious texts and secret al-Qaeda and Islamic State letters that few have seen - William McCants' The ISIS Apocalypse explores how religious fervor, strategic calculation, and doomsday prophecy shaped the Islamic State's past and foreshadow its dark future.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: William McCants
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release: 2015-09-22
File: 256 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781466892705

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An authoritative introduction to ISIS, from a leading authority on jihadism The Islamic State has stunned the world with its savagery, destructiveness, and military and recruiting successes. What explains the rise of ISIS and what does it portend for the future of the Middle East? In this book, one of the world's leading authorities on political Islam and jihadism sheds new light on these questions as he provides a unique history of the rise and growth of ISIS. Moving beyond journalistic accounts, Fawaz Gerges provides a clear and compelling account of the deeper conditions that fuel ISIS. The book describes how ISIS emerged in the chaos of Iraq following the 2003 U.S. invasion, how the group was strengthened by the suppression of the Arab Spring and by the war in Syria, and how ISIS seized leadership of the jihadist movement from Al Qaeda. Part of a militant Sunni revival, ISIS claims its goals are to resurrect a caliphate and rid "Islamic lands" of all Shia and other minorities. In contrast to Al Qaeda, ISIS initially focused on the "near enemy"—Shia, the Iraqi and Syrian regimes, and secular, pro-Western states in the Middle East. But in a tactical shift ISIS has now taken responsibility for spectacular attacks in Europe and other places beyond the Middle East, making it clear that the group is increasingly interested in targeting the "far enemy" as well. Ultimately, the book shows how decades of dictatorship, poverty, and rising sectarianism in the Middle East, exacerbated by foreign intervention, led to the rise of ISIS—and why addressing those problems is the only way to ensure its end. An authoritative introduction to arguably the most important conflict in the world today, this is an essential book for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the social turmoil and political violence ravaging the Arab-Islamic world.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Fawaz A. Gerges
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Release: 2017-03-14
File: 392 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781400885596

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A Pulitzer Prize-winning intelligence reporter presents a narrative account of a mysterious Jordanian agent that describes how he infiltrated both al-Qaeda and the CIA before killing himself and seven CIA operatives in a suicide bombing, an event that revealed sobering agency weaknesses. Reprint.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Joby Warrick
Publisher: Anchor
Release: 2012
File: 252 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780307742315

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Hardcover edition has a map on the endpapers.

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Genre: History
Author: Michael Weiss
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release: 2016-03-29
File: 448 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781682450208

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The essential “on the ground” report on the fastest-growing new threat in the Middle East, from the winner of the 2014 Foreign Affairs Journalist of the Year Award Born of the Iraqi and Syrian civil wars, the Islamic State astonished the world in 2014 by creating a powerful new force in the Middle East. By combining religious fanaticism and military prowess, the new self-declared caliphate poses a threat to the political status quo of the whole region. In The Rise of Islamic State, Patrick Cockburn describes the conflicts behind a dramatic unraveling of US foreign policy. He shows how the West created the conditions for ISIS’s explosive success by stoking the war in Syria. The West—the US and NATO in particular—underestimated the militants’ potential until it was too late and failed to act against jihadi sponsors in Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Pakistan. From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Patrick Cockburn
Publisher: Verso Books
Release: 2015-02-03
File: 192 Pages
ISBN-13: 9781784780494

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Several "pieces first published in The New Yorker recall the path terror in the Middle East has taken from the rise of al-Qaeda in the 1990s to the recent beheadings of reporters and aid workers by ISIS ... They include an ... impression of Saudi Arabia, a kingdom of silence under the control of the religious police; the Syrian film industry, then compliant at the edges but already exuding a feeling of the barely masked fury that erupted into civil war; [and] the 2006-11 Israeli-Palestinian conflict in Gaza, a study in disparate values of human lives. Others continue to look into al-Qaeda as it forms a master plan for its future, experiences a rebellion from within the organization, and spins off a growing web of terror in the world"--

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Genre: Biography & Autobiography
Author: Lawrence Wright
Publisher: Vintage
Release: 2017-07
File: 464 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780804170031

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An incisive narrative history of the Islamic State, from the 2005 master plan to reestablish the Caliphate to its quest for Final Victory in 2020 Given how quickly its operations have achieved global impact, it may seem that the Islamic State materialized suddenly. In fact, al-Qaeda’s operations chief, Sayf al-Adl, devised a seven-stage plan for jihadis to conquer the world by 2020 that included reestablishing the Caliphate in Syria between 2013 and 2016. Despite a massive schism between the Islamic State and al-Qaeda, al-Adl’s plan has proved remarkably prescient. In summer 2014, ISIS declared itself the Caliphate after capturing Mosul, Iraq—part of stage five in al-Adl’s plan. Drawing on large troves of recently declassified documents captured from the Islamic State and its predecessors, counterterrorism expert Brian Fishman tells the story of this organization’s complex and largely hidden past—and what the master plan suggests about its future. Only by understanding the Islamic State’s full history—and the strategy that drove it—can we understand the contradictions that may ultimately tear it apart.

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Genre: History
Author: Brian H. Fishman
Publisher: Yale University Press
Release: 2016-11-22
File: 288 Pages
ISBN-13: 9780300224535

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For four years, Jessica Stern interviewed extremist members of three religions around the world: Christians, Jews, and Muslims. Traveling extensively—to refugee camps in Lebanon, to religious schools in Pakistan, to prisons in Amman, Asqelon, and Pensacola—she discovered that the Islamic jihadi in the mountains of Pakistan and the Christian fundamentalist bomber in Oklahoma have much in common. Based on her vast research, Stern lucidly explains how terrorist organizations are formed by opportunistic leaders who—using religion as both motivation and justification—recruit the disenfranchised. She depicts how moral fervor is transformed into sophisticated organizations that strive for money, power, and attention. Jessica Stern's extensive interaction with the faces behind the terror provide unprecedented insight into acts of inexplicable horror, and enable her to suggest how terrorism can most effectively be countered. A crucial book on terrorism, Terror in the Name of God is a brilliant and thought-provoking work.

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Genre: Political Science
Author: Jessica Stern
Publisher: Harper Collins
Release: 2009-10-13
File: 400 Pages
ISBN-13: 0061755397

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