Directorate S by Steve Coll

Directorate S

Resuming the narrative of his Pulitzer Prize-winning Ghost Wars, bestselling author Steve Coll tells for the first time 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 9/11 Prior to 9/11, the United States had been carrying out small-scale covert operations in Afghanistan, ostensibly in cooperation, although often in direct opposition, ...

Details Directorate S

TitleDirectorate S
Release DateFeb 6th, 2018
PublisherPenguin Press
GenreNonfiction, History, Politics, War, Military, Cultural, Pakistan, Literature, American, Terrorism, North American Hi..., American History, Audiobook

Reviews Directorate S

  • Murtaza
    Reading Ghost Wars many years ago provided a great background education on the history of the U.S. War on Terror. This book is billed as a continuation of that history, focused primarily on the conflicts in Afghanistan and Pakistan that began in 2001. Directorate S aims to be a definitive narrative of that period and as such covers a lot of ground, running to over 700 pages that cover everything from top-level political negotiations to accounts o...
  • Steven Z.
    In 2004 Steve Coll earned his second Pulitzer Prize for GHOST WARS: THE SECRET HISTORY OF THE CIA, AFGHANISTAN AND BIN LADEN, FROM THE SOVIET INVASION TO SEPTEMBER 10, 2001. The book provided a reliable analytical approach as it explained what led to al-Qaeda’s rise amidst Afghanistan’s civil war which culminated with the attack on September 11th. Coll’s new book DIRECTORATE S: THE CIA AND AMERICA’S SECRET WARS IN AFGHANISTAN AND PAKISTAN...
  • Stephen Yoder
    Wow. The scope of this book is simply impressive. It covers 15 years, several nations, a wide scope of characters, many government agencies, leaders that come & go, and so many covert actions from all sides. I enjoyed this book thoroughly. I don't anticipate ever visiting Afghanistan or Pakistan so this is the closest I'll get to learning about the endless intrigue inside & between these two nations. Coll calls out all of follies surrounding the ...
  • Miles Kwiatek
    Directorate S is a book, yes, but if I were to try and find a more accurate word to describe it, I'd probably have to settle on "tome". It's extremely long, very detailed (with a five-page dramatis personae), and monolithic in its scope. Of course, any book describing the better part of two decades in one of the world's most complicated regions would be. Fortunately, Steve Coll is a master of exploring vast subjects through various lenses, and Di...
  • Mubeen Irfan
    This is a sequel to Ghost Wars but can be read even without reading Ghost Wars. Still, I strongly recommend to anyone who hasn't read Ghost Wars to go back and read it before starting this one. This book will then make a hundred times more sense.It starts with the death of Ahmed Shah Masood and 9/11 immediately happening post his assassination bringing the US back to Afghanistan. What follows is a detailed account of tri party mess created in thi...
  • Peter Podbielski
    Steve Coll's most disturbing book. The narrative is Afghanistan, however, the underlying theme is a story of limits of American power and mismatched means and ends. The U.S., "rich, technologically advanced, and often ably staffed, [with a] foreign policy, intelligence, and military machine built for competition with other states" to win conventional wars against opposing armies, to negotiate treaties with professional diplomats, to patrol sea la...
  • Kanishka Nawabi
    No doubt Coll has an esthetical sense of writing! 'Directorate S', however, is a 'got carried away' version of his Ghost Wars. The 800-page book covers a lot of ground with little revelations, bordering drab. The book also narrates an Afghan story, full of villains and vilified history; a makeshift premise for all Afghanistan issues. A bit biased 'shoved down Afghan throats' approach but 'if you don't tell your story, someone else will.'
  • Jonathan Mckay
    Great read. Some timeless lessons here about the ability of organizations to fool themselves, and small events leading to lasting consequences. This book is impressive in its ability to both zoom in , such as the chapter 'lives and limbs', or Karzai's deteriorating relationship with the US, and zoom out to reveal the 15 year ambling path of U.S. policy in the region.
  • Liz
    I won this in a first reads giveaway in exchange for an honest review. This is one of the most depressing books I have read in years. The author goes into exhausting detail about all of the mistakes we made in Afghanistan [like trusting the Pakistanis!] and the amount of money we have wasted blows my mind. I knew it was bad but not QUITE THIS BAD!
  • Mythili
    Colossal and clarifying. In his review of this book for The Atlantic, Mark Mazzetti compares reading Directorate S to "watching a slow-motion video of a truck going off a cliff, frame by agonizing frame." I strongly agree. Reading this book I was sometimes so filled with despair I had to put it down, but I'm glad I stuck it out.
  • Arfan Ismail
    Outstanding, brilliant, superb. An in-depth insight into one of the most troubled regions in the world. A must read for all diaspora Pakistanis and Afghanis.
  • Patricia Beltraante
    Steve coll is so readable _ I could not put the. Book down, a long slog as was Exxon/ Mobil. I wonder how he is able to write so well about such disparate subjects. Perhaps he gets little sleep!