The No. 1 Sunday Times bestselling modern classic: A Bravo Two Zero for the Second Gulf War. They were branded as cowards and accused of being the British Special Forces Squadron that ran away from the Iraqis. But nothing could be further from the truth. Ten years on, the story of these sixty men can finally be told. In March 2003 M Squadron - an SBS unit with SAS embeds - was sent 1,000 kilometres behind enemy lines on a true mission impossible, to take the surrender of the 100,000-strong Iraqi Army 5th Corps.
"Gripping account of a special forces op"
We are constantly bombarded with inaccurate, contradictory and sometimes misleading information - until now. Ben Goldacre masterfully dismantles the dubious science behind some of the great drug trials, court cases and missed opportunities of our time. He also shows us the fascinating story of how we know what we know, and gives us the tools to uncover bad science for ourselves.
"Making science truly entertaining"
Brilliant and engagingly written, Why Nations Fail answers the question that has stumped the experts for centuries: Why are some nations rich and others poor, divided by wealth and poverty, health and sickness, food and famine?
"History made science"
A million listeners bought The Undercover Economist to get the lowdown on how economics works on a small scale, in our everyday lives. Since then, economics has become big news. Crises, austerity, riots, bonuses - all are in the headlines all the time. But how does this large-scale economic world really work? What would happen if we cancelled everyone's debt? How do you create a job? Will the BRIC countries take over the world?
"The perfect book for that business flight"
The UK's most influential food and drink journalist shoots a few sacred cows of food culture. The doctrine of local food is dead. Farmers' markets are merely a lifestyle choice for the affluent middle classes. And 'organic' has become little more than a marketing label that is way past its sell-by date. That may be a little hard to swallow for the ethically aware food shopper, but it doesn't make it any less true. And now the UK's most outspoken and entertaining food writer is ready to explain why.
"Food, Glorious Food?"
Most people regard tax havens as being relevant only to celebrities, crooks and spivs, and mistakenly believe that the main offshore problems are money laundering and terrorist financing. These are only small parts of the whole picture. The offshore system has been (discreetly) responsible for the greatest ever shift of wealth from poor to rich. It also undermines our democracies by offering the wealthiest members of society escape routes from normal democratic controls.
"To pay, or not to pay tax ...?"
"Economic hit men," John Perkins writes, "are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. Their tools include fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder."
James Gleick, the author of the best sellers Chaos and Genius, brings us his crowning work: a revelatory chronicle that shows how information has become the modern era's defining quality-the blood, the fuel, the vital principle of our world.
"Informative but temporarily boring as an audiobook"
If in the year 1411 you had been able to circumnavigate the globe, you would have been most impressed by the dazzling civilizations of the Orient. The Forbidden City was under construction in Ming Beijing; in the Near East, the Ottomans were closing in on Constantinople. By contrast, England would have struck you as a miserable backwater ravaged by plague, bad sanitation and incessant war. The other quarrelsome kingdoms of Western Europe - Aragon, Castile, France, Portugal and Scotland - would have seemed little better.
"Very entertaining, interesting and informative"
The Shipping Forecast is a curious peace of broadcasting: at once impenetrably baffling yet at the same time reassuringly familiar. But where are these places, and what secrets do they conceal? Charlie Connelly sets off on a journey round the forecast to find out, unearthing the history and culture behind one of Britain's best-loved broadcasting institutions.
"Attention All Shipping"
In July 1995, San Jose Mercury-News reporter Gary Webb found the Big One - the blockbuster story every journalist secretly dreams about - without even looking for it. A simple phone call concerning an unexceptional pending drug trial turned into a massive conspiracy involving the Nicaraguan Contra rebels, L.A. and Bay Area crack cocaine dealers, and the Central Intelligence Agency.
"Not what I was expecting"
From Anna Akhmatova to Stefan Zweig, via Charles de Gaulle, Hitler, Thomas Mann and Charlie Chaplin, this varied and unfailingly absorbing book is both story and history, both public memoir and personal record - and provides an essential field-guide to the vast movements of taste, intellect, politics and delusion that helped to prepare the times we live in now.
"Another great clearing in the jungle from CJ"
Eye-opening accounts of heroic resistance to religious extremism. From Karachi to Tunis, Kabul to Tehran, across the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia, and beyond, these trailblazers often risked death to combat the rising tide of fundamentalism within their own countries. But this global community of writers, artists, doctors, musicians, museum curators, lawyers, activists, and educators of Muslim heritage remains largely invisible, lost amid the heated coverage of Islamist terror attacks on one side and abuses perpetrated against suspected terrorists on the other.
At 24 years of age, U.S. Army Ranger Sean Parnell was named commander of a forty-man elite infantry platoon - a unit that came to be known as the Outlaws - and was tasked with rooting out Pakistan-based insurgents from a mountain valley along Afghanistan's eastern frontier. Parnell and his men assumed they would be facing a ragtag bunch of civilians, but in May 2006 what started out as a routine patrol through the lower mountains of the Hindu Kush became a brutal ambush.
"Awesome just awesome"
Paul Collier reveals that 50 failed states - home to the poorest one billion people on earth - pose the central challenge of the developing world in the 21st century. The book shines much-needed light on this group of small nations, largely unnoticed by the industrialized West, that are dropping further and further behind the majority of the world's people, often falling into an absolute decline in living standards.
"Thought provoking and inspirational"
Everything we know about solving the world's problems is wrong. Out: Plans, experts and above all, leaders. In: Adapting - improvise rather than plan; fail, learn, and try again. In this groundbreaking new book, Tim Harford shows how the world's most complex and important problems - including terrorism, climate change, poverty, innovation, and the financial crisis - can only be solved from the bottom up by rapid experimenting and adapting.
"A rising star"
When award-winning journalist Nick Davies decided to break Fleet Street's unwritten rule by investigating his own colleagues, he found that the business of reporting the truth had been slowly subverted by the mass production of ignorance.
"You'll never buy a newspaper again"
The world at the beginning of the 20th century seemed, for most of its inhabitants, stable and relatively benign. Globalizing, booming economies married to technological breakthroughs seemed to promise a better world for most people. Instead, the 20th century proved to be overwhelmingly the most violent, frightening and brutalized in history with fanatical, often genocidal warfare engulfing most societies between the outbreak of the First World War and the end of the Cold War.
"Brilliant and Eye Opening"
On March 7, 2004, former SAS soldier and mercenary Simon Mann prepared to take off from Harare International Airport. His destination was Equatorial Guinea; his intention was to remove one of the most brutal dictators in Africa in a privately organized coup d'état. The plot had the tacit approval of Western intelligence agencies, and Mann had already planned, overseen, and won two wars in Angola and Sierra Leone. So why did it go so wrong?
"Shocking but very interesting"
In Great Games, Local Rules, Alexander Cooley, one of America's most respected international relations scholars, explores the dynamics of the new competition for control of the region since 9/11. All three great powers have crafted strategies to increase their power in the area, which includes Afghanistan and the former Soviet republics of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan. Each nation is pursuing important goals: basing rights for the US, access to natural resources for the Chinese, and increased political influence for the Russians.
Fashion is many things. It is self-expression, big business, trend-setting, a lifestyle choice. But however you see fashion, it relies on one simple characteristic: the incredible speed with which clothes make their journey from the drawing board to the High Street hanger. Fashion is fast. Fast fashion influences the types of garments we have in our wardrobes.
Hundreds of thousands of Kurds were murdered under the tyrannical regime of Saddam Hussein. Some four thousand Kurdish villages were destroyed. Betrayed again and again by the nations of the world, the Kurds were as decimated as any people in history. Then came the Kurdish Miracle, that combination of ancient wisdom and modern economic genius that is now making the Kurdish homeland one of the most prosperous places on earth.
Chaplains of the Militia is the extraordinary story of those priests accused of complicity in genocide. Chris McGreal takes us from Rwanda in 1994, where he stood among the bodies at one of the many massacres in churches, to modern day France in pursuit of a priest notorious during the genocide for wearing a gun and selecting victims for the machete-waving militia.
In assembling an international coalition to combat ISIS, the United States has looked mostly to the Middle East and Europe, regions that it said face a direct threat from the militant Islamist group. But other parts of the world are just as anxious about ISIS - above all, Southeast Asia.
Will China be the leading global power of this century? Otto Tien-Pok Xing argues that China is set to be the dominant superpower in 10 years.
Islam's Reign of Terror chronicles the war waged against the U.S. and the West, resulting in over 24,000 acts of terror and tens of thousands of deaths in a campaign to force the world to submit unconditionally to Islam and Sharia Law. It also discusses the West's anemic, evasive response to the war declared against it, and how that insipid response only encourages terrorists and states that sponsor terrorism and other Islam-dominated nations to continue to attack the West.
With rapid globalization, the world is more deeply interconnected than ever before. While this has its advantages, it also brings with it systemic risks that are only just being identified and understood. Rapid urbanization, together with technological leaps, such as the Internet, mean that we are now physically and virtually closer than ever in humanity's history. We face a number of international challenges - climate change, finance, pandemics, cyber security, and migration - which spill over national boundaries.
Europe's political climate is more hostile to Jews now than at any time in recent memory. Rising anti-Semitism among Europe's Muslims, especially in the wake of the war in Gaza, is one reason for this change. But to claim that the rise of Muslim anti-Semitism is the main culprit - as the German journalist Jochen Bittner did this week in The New York Times - is to overlook the role played by the European majority.
Recently, the world has been shaken by gruesome photos and videos that have introduced us to the now infamous terrorist group known as ISIS. The world's wealthiest and most powerful jihadists, ISIS originated within Al Qaeda with the goal of creating an Islamic state across Iraq and Syria and unrelenting jihad on Christians. Separate from ISIS, the terrorist group Hamas has waged an equally brutal war against Israel. Both groups, if left undefeated, have the potential to unleash a catastrophic genocide.
World politics is entering a new phase, in which the great divisions among humankind and the dominating source of international conflict will be cultural.
A Path Appears is even more ambitious in scale: nothing less than a sweeping tapestry of people who are making the world a better place and a guide to the ways that we can do the same - whether with a donation of $5 or $5 million, with our time, by capitalizing on our skills as individuals, or by using the resources of our businesses.
Named after Mahatma Gandhi's phrase for the schools of pre-colonial India, The Beautiful Tree recounts Tooley's journey from the largest shanty town in Africa to the hinterlands of Gansu, China. It introduces listeners to the families and teachers who taught him that the poor are not waiting for educational handouts. They are building their own schools and educating themselves.
A gripping day-by-day account of the 1978 Camp David conference, when President Jimmy Carter persuaded Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian president Anwar Sadat to sign the first peace treaty in the modern Middle East, one which endures to this day.
13 Hours presents, for the first time ever, the true account of the events of September 11, 2012, when terrorists attacked the US State Department Special Mission Compound and a nearby CIA station called the Annex in Benghazi, Libya. A team of six American security operators fought to repel the attackers and protect the Americans stationed there. Those men went beyond the call of duty, performing extraordinary acts of courage and heroism, to avert tragedy on a much larger scale.
Life in Nigeria's largest city is changing for the better, offering a potential lesson for struggling states looking to stage a turnaround: mayors and city councils are more likely to embrace positive change than legislatures and presidents -- and far more quickly and effectively.
Hundreds of thousands of people die every year from malaria. No one's quite sure of the exact number. It's just too difficult to keep track of the disease as it tears through more than 200 million cases each year, many of them in countries wracked by war and blighted by other problems. In The Deadly Air, Christian Jennings mixes together his own experiences of suffering from malaria with a history of mankind's struggle with the disease.
Full of action-packed experiences from world conflicts, this collection of war stories - some true, some not - tells tales of POWs surviving in Vietnam, World War II, and Cambodia. These stories of grit and strength put you in the middle of the action and will leave you with a respect for true war heroes. Beyond Survival is a journey into the invincible human spirit that unites heart and mind in a compelling and unforgettable experience.
The urgent truth about the privatization of America's national security that exposes where this industry came from, how it operates, where it's heading-and why we should be concerned. Thirty years ago there were no private military and security companies (PMSCs); there were only mercenaries. Now the PMSCs are a bona-fide industry, an indispensable part of American foreign and military policy.
There are 59 billion animals alive at any one time, farmed for their meat. The world's domestic cattle weigh 16 times as much as all the wild animals on the planet put together. Sixty percent of the globe's agricultural land is used for beef production, from growing grain to raising cows.Since the early 20th century, industrial farming and global capitalism have worked hand-in-hand to provide meat at an ever-cheaper price. And our appetites, so tempted, have led us to consume more and more animals.
The end for Colonel Muammar Gaddafi when it came, after 42 years of dictatorial power, was ignominious and violent. After months of bloody fighting, the Libyan revolutionary forces had driven their former leader from Tripoli before capturing him in a drainpipe in the city of Sirte. The gory images captured on the mobile phones of the victors were reproduced on newspaper front pages around the world, marking the end of a cruel regime. In the capital, ordinary Libyans explored the once forbidden compound that housed Gaddafi and his family.
The Blue Sweater is the inspiring story of a woman who left a career in international banking to spend her life on a quest to understand global poverty. It all started back home in Virginia, with the blue sweater, a gift that quickly became her prized possession - until the day she outgrew it and gave it away to Goodwill. Eleven years later in Africa, she spotted a young boy wearing that very sweater, with her name still on the tag inside.
An exposé on how the rise of China will affect the American way of life, The End of Cheap China is a fun, riveting, must-listen audiobook not only for people doing business in China but for anyone interested in understanding the forces that are changing the world. Many Americans know China for manufacturing cheap products, thanks largely to the country's vast supply of low-cost workers. But China is changing, and the glut of cheap labor that has made everyday low prices possible is drying up as the Chinese people seek not to make iPhones, but to buy them.
Direct democracy can no longer be thought of as something that belongs to the future.... This is the scarcely believable story of how, in just over three years, a political dotcom grew to become one of the most powerful forces in the affairs of a country of 60 million people. At the general election in Italy this year, Beppe Grillo's Five Star Movement, which has its headquarters on a website, took a quarter of the vote - more than Silvio Berlusconi's party.
In A History of the World Since 9/11 Dominic Streatfeild expertly combines history, biography and investigative journalism to show how a massacre on a clear September day in 2001 has touched the lives of millions of people around the world.
"Gripping, enlightning, shocking and a must listen"
Tower of Basel is the first investigative history of the world's most secretive global financial institution. Based on extensive archival research in Switzerland, Britain, and the United States, and in-depth interviews with key decision-makers including Paul Volcker, the former chairman of the US Federal Reserve; Sir Mervyn King, governor of the Bank of England; and former senior Bank for International Settlements managers and officials.
"Incredible story about the Bank no-one knows"
Love, Poverty, and War: Journeys and Essays showcases the Hitchens rejection of consensus and cliché, whether he's reporting from abroad in Indonesia, Kurdistan, Iraq, North Korea, or Cuba, or when his pen is targeted mercilessly at the likes of William Clinton, Mother Theresa ("a fanatic, a fundamentalist, and a fraud"), the Dalai Lama, Noam Chomsky, Mel Gibson, and Michael Bloomberg.
Lee, the founding father of modern Singapore and its prime minister from 1959 to 1990, has honed his wisdom during more than fifty years on the world stage. Almost single-handedly responsible for transforming Singapore into a Western-style economic success, he offers a unique perspective on the geopolitics of East and West. American presidents from Richard Nixon to Barack Obama have welcomed him to the White House.
Barbara Demick's Nothing to Envy follows the lives of six North Koreans over 15 years - a chaotic period that saw the death of Kim Il-sung and the unchallenged rise to power of his son, Kim Jong-il, and the devastation of a far-ranging famine that killed one-fifth of the population.
"Great book - dreary reader"
John Galt, the fictional character from Ayn Rand's best-selling novel Atlas Shrugged has come to embody the individualist capitalist who acts in his own enlightened self interest, and in doing so lifts the world around him. Some of today's most successful CEOs, journalists, sports figures, actors, and thinkers have led their lives according to Galt's (i.e., Rand's) philosophy. Now, in I Am John Galt, these inspiring stories are gathered with the keen insight and analysis of well-known market commentator Donald Luskin and business writer Andrew Greta.
Japan has always seemed a puzzle to most westerners - so modern, so industrialized, yet somehow so different. Japanese Society and History seeks to initiate westerners to the learning process of making Japan seem a little less mysterious and a little more understandable. This book walks readers through some of the important features of Japanese society to help readers begin slowly forming a more complete picture of Japan.
James Brabazon is narrating this story of war, violence, and political intrigue. He wanted a war. And, for his sins, he got one. James Brabazon was an ambitious young war reporter when he entered the chaos of the Liberian Civil War in 2002. Running with the infamous LURD rebels, he survived numerous deadly ambushes, the privations of dysentery and a dramatic two hundred-mile escape from Government troops through dense equatorial jungle. He even had a bounty put on his head.
Pamela Olson, a small town girl from eastern Oklahoma, had what she always wanted: a physics degree from Stanford University. But instead of feeling excited for what came next, she felt consumed by dread and confusion. This irresistible memoir chronicles her journey from aimless ex-bartender to Ramallah-based journalist and foreign press coordinator for a Palestinian presidential candidate.
"A religious fundamentalist, a political operative, a primitive sermonizer, and an accomplice of worldly secular powers. Her mission has always been of this kind. The irony is that she has never been able to induce anybody to believe her. It is past time that she was duly honored and taken at her word." Among his many books, perhaps none have sparked more outrage than The Missionary Position, Christopher Hitchens's meticulous study of the life and deeds of Mother Teresa.
"Illuminating (with a not so saintly light)"
Interventions, by Noam Chomsky, is getting new press after the Pentagon banned the book from Guantanamo Bay's prison library. Interventions is Noam Chomsky at his best. Not since his all-time best-selling title, 9/11, published in the Open Media series in 2001, have readers and listeners had a timely, short, affordable Chomsky. Unlike 9/11, Interventions is a writerly work - a series of more than 30 tightly argued essays aimed at various aspects of U.S. power and politics in the post-9/11 world. While critical of U.S. military interventions around the globe, each piece in the book is in itself an intellectual intervention.
The world has watched stunned at the bloodshed in Mexico. Thirty thousand murdered since 2006; police chiefs shot within hours of taking office; mass graves comparable to those of civil wars; car bombs shattering storefronts; headless corpses heaped in town squares. The United States throws Black Hawk helicopters and drug agents at the problem. But in secret, Washington is confused and divided about what to do. "Who are these mysterious figures tearing Mexico apart?" they wonder.
"Narration is awful!"