Cloth: 642 pages
Publisher: Basic Books
The World Is a Battlefield
In Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield, Jeremy Scahill, author of the New York Times bestseller Blackwater: The World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, takes us inside America’s new covert wars. The foot soldiers in these battles operate globally and inside the United States with orders from the White House to do whatever is necessary to hunt down, capture, or kill individuals designated by the president as enemies.
Drawn from the ranks of the Navy SEALs, Delta Force, former Blackwater and other private security contractors, the CIA’s Special Activities Division, and the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), these elite soldiers operate worldwide, with thousands of secret commandos working in more than one hundred countries. Funded through “black budgets,” Special Operations Forces conduct missions in denied areas, engage in targeted killings, snatch and grab individuals, and direct drone, AC-130, and cruise missile strikes. While the Bush administration deployed these ghost militias, President Barack Obama has expanded their operations and given them new scope and legitimacy.
Dirty Wars follows the consequences of the declaration that “the world is a battlefield,” as Scahill uncovers the most important foreign policy story of our time. From Afghanistan to Yemen, Somalia, and beyond, Scahill reports from the frontlines in this high-stakes investigation and explores the depths of America’s global killing machine. He goes beneath the surface of America’s covert wars, conducted in the shadows, outside the range of the press, without effective congressional oversight or public debate. And, based on unprecedented access, Scahill tells the chilling story of an American citizen marked for assassination by his own government.
As US leaders draw the country deeper into conflicts across the globe, setting the world stage for enormous destabilization and blowback, Americans are not only at greater risk—we are changing as a nation. Scahill unmasks the shadow warriors who prosecute these secret wars and puts a human face on the casualties of unaccountable violence that is now official policy: victims of night raids, secret prisons cruise missile attacks and drone strikes, and whole classes of people branded as “suspected militants.” Through his brave reporting, he exposes the true nature of the dirty wars the United States government struggles to keep hidden.
"Dirty Wars is not politically correct. It is not a history of the last decade as seen from inside the White House, or from the pages of the New York Times and Washington Post. Scahill's book takes us inside Dick Cheney's famed "dark side" and tells us, with convincing detail and much new information, what has been done in the name of America since 9/11."—Seymour Hersh, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist
JEREMY SCAHILL is National Security Correspondent for The Nation magazine and is a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow at The Nation Institute. He is the writer, with David Riker, and a producer of the documentary feature film, Dirty Wars, which won the Cinematography Award for U.S. Documentary at the Sundance Film Festival 2013. Scahill has reported from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Nigeria, Yemen, the former Yugoslavia and elsewhere across the globe. Scahill is a frequent guest on a wide array of programs, appearing regularly on The Rachel Maddow Show, Real Time with Bill Maher, and Democracy Now!. He has also appeared on ABC World News, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, BBC, al Jazeera, CNN, The NewsHour, and Bill Moyers Journal. Scahill’s work has sparked several Congressional investigations and won some of journalism’s highest honors. He was twice awarded the prestigious George Polk Award, in 1998 for foreign reporting and in 2008 for his book Blackwater. In 2013, Scahill was named one of nine recipients of the Donald Windham-Sandy M. Campbell Literature Prizes at Yale University.