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Review of
"Afghanistan: A military history from Alexander the Great to the fall of the Taliban"

Afghanistan: A military history from Alexander the Great to the fall of the Taliban
By Stephen Tanner
Published by De Capo Press (2002, 2003)



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An excellent book on Afghanistan.  Covers the military history from Alexander the Great to the fall of the Taliban. 

From the book:  "Across the centuries Afghanistan has been an easy country to enter; the problem comes when an army tries to remain, or when it tries to leave."

The author examines over 2,500 years of military conquest and adventures in and around Afghanistan.  Over time the occupying armies fare badly every time.  The invading armies have found that occupying Afghanistan and trying to subdue the mountain tribes is a difficult task. 

The military misadventures of foreign armies invading Afghanistan such as Alexander the Great, the Persians, the Mongols (and variations of the Mongols), the British, the Soviets, and others have left lasting effects on the memory of military historians.

The jury is still out on the United States occupation of Afghanistan.  The United States invaded Afghanistan with about 200 Special Forces Soldiers, who - allied with the Northern Alliance resistance force, the occasional CIA agent, and STS Airmen who called in U.S. Air Force precision air strikes - were able to topple the Taliban army of 100,000 within two months and enter Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. 

However, several years later the situation has been reversed and the United States and its allies are facing a resurgent Taliban.  Will it too suffer the fate of every other army that has tried to stay in Afghanistan?

This book is an good examination of what happens to armies that stay too long in Afghanistan.  The author is a military historian and writer.