Al Qaeda, The Islamic State, and the Global Jihadist Movement: What Everyone Needs to Know. Daniel Byman

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Danial Byman‟s latest book, Al Qaeda, the Islamic State and the Global Jihadist Movement: What everyone needs to know, comes at a crucial juncture in time when new terrorist outfits have been evolving out of the old ones. This piece of writing by Daniel Byman qualifies more as a handbook on al-Qaeda than an analytical attempt to ascertain how the terrorist organisations have developed over time. It may as well have been a detailed presentation of facts and figures if it were not for the author‟s personal but biased take on certain matters. It starts with a historical account of the pre 9/11 world and evolution of al-Qaeda long before that. In this section, the author explains how 9/11 was instrumental in bringing al-Qaeda from the periphery of global politics to its white hot centre. The author takes the readers back to the era of Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. According to him, this time around, al-Qaeda was slowly establishing its organisational structure which was upgraded with time. But the only thing more effective than the concrete structure of the organization was the idea behind its very existence. An idea that made a small band of people powerful enough to terrorize the world was the real ideology of this organization. However, this premise is based on a false assumption as these organisations are not merely composed of a few adulterated minds and wrongly interpreted religious notions. The truth, which the author completely ignores, is that there has been substantial evidence which points to the bigger powers that have funded such organisations.

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