Hezbollah’s Global Network of Crime and Terror

August 7, 2013

#1 Hezbollah

Matthew Levitt Reveals the Organization’s Worldwide Terrorist Activities and Financial Structure

Hezbollah, Lebanon’s “Party of God,” is a multifaceted organization: it is a powerful political party in Lebanon, a Shia Islam religious and social movement, Lebanon’s largest militia, a close ally of Iran, and a terrorist network. Hezbollah and Iran both deny the existence of a Hezbollah terrorist apparatus, but intelligence services worldwide know it well. While some acts of terror, like the kidnappings in Lebanon in the 1980s and the 1992 and 1994 bombings in Buenos Aires, are generally known, Hezbollah’s global presence and terrorist activities go much farther.

Despite the wealth of material published over the past few years on al Qaeda, the war on terrorism, and Iraq, far less has been written about Hezbollah. The few books that have been published focus on the group’s ideology, history, and activities in Lebanon. Matthew Levitt’s Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon’s Party of God breaks new ground with this first thorough examination of this organization’s covert operations beyond Lebanon’s borders. Drawing on extensive field research, including interviews with intelligence and law enforcement officials around the world, newly declassified intelligence material, court documents, and official reports, Levitt traces Hezbollah’s beginnings with its first violent forays in Lebanon. He then investigates its terrorist activities and criminal enterprises abroad in Europe, the Middle East, South America, Southeast Asia, Africa, and finally in North America, concluding with a look at Hezbollah’s position as Iran’s most trusted, professional, and deniable proxy.

Levitt argues convincingly that Hezbollah’s willingness to use violence at home and abroad should be of serious concern. Hezbollah authoritatively documents the history of Hezbollah’s clandestine activities over time and across continents, including the group’s terrorist operations and financial and logistical networks. A topic of tremendous relevance to current events, understanding the threat posed by Hezbollah today could not be more pressing.

Matthew Levitt is a senior fellow and director of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy’s Stein Program on Counterterrorism and Intelligence. Previously, Dr. Levitt served as the deputy assistant secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the US Department of the Treasury, as an FBI counterterrorism analyst, and as an adviser on counterterrorism to the US State Department. Levitt held fellowships with the Combating Terrorism Center at the US Military Academy and the Homeland Security Policy Institute at George Washington University, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is the author of Hamas: Politics, Charity, and Terrorism in the Service of Jihad (Yale University Press, 2006).

PUBLICATION DATE: September 2013, 416 pages
ISBN 978-1-62616-013-2, hardcover $32.95
PUBLICITY CONTACT: Jackie Beilhart, (202) 687-9298, jb594@georgetown.edu
RIGHTS: Sales in UK, the British Commonwealth (excluding Canada), Europe, and Africa belong to Hurst. Publicity contact for Hurst is Kathleen May, Kathleen@hurstpub.co.uk


Chellaney’s Water Named as Finalist for the Bernard Schwartz Book Award

August 7, 2012

The Asia Society has selected Brahma Chellaney’s book Water: Asia’s New Battleground as a finalist for their 2012 Bernard Schwartz Book Award.  Suzanne DiMaggio, Vice President of Asia Society’s Global Policy Programs, commented on the announcement of the finalists, saying, “The five finalists for the 2012 Bernard Schwartz Book Award each, in different ways, shed light on important trends, challenges, and opportunities taking place in Asia. They are required reading for all who want to better understand this dynamic region.”

We are proud that one of the finalists is a Georgetown University Press book. Water: Asia’s New Battleground is a pioneering study of Asia’s murky water politics and the relationships between freshwater, peace, and security. In this unique and highly readable book, Brahma Chellaney expertly paints a larger picture of water across Asia, highlights the security implications of resource-linked territorial disputes, and proposes real strategies to avoid conflict and more equitably share Asia’s water resources.

The Bernard Schwartz Book Award distinguishes books of nonfiction that focus on contemporary Asia or U.S.-Asia relations and promote a meaningful dialogue of the changes in Asia and their implications for the world at large. The other books that have been recognized are: Cambodia’s Curse by Joel Brinkley (PublicAffairs), China in Ten Words by Yu Hua (Pantheon Books), Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China by Ezra Vogel (Belknap Press of Harvard University Press), and Where China Meets India by Thant Myint-U (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).


Georgetown University Press to Publish Jan Karski’s Story of a Secret State

June 18, 2012

Georgetown University Press is proud to announce that we will be the US publishers of a new edition of Jan Karski’s Story of a Secret State. Jan Karski was recently posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his work as a former officer in the Polish Underground during World War II, who was among the first to provide eye-witness accounts of the Holocaust to the world. When announcing the award, President Obama remarked, “We must tell our children about how this evil was allowed to happen—because so many people succumbed to their darkest instincts; because so many others stood silent. But let us also tell our children about the Righteous Among the Nations. Among them was Jan Karski—a young Polish Catholic—who witnessed Jews being put on cattle cars, who saw the killings, and who told the truth, all the way to President Roosevelt himself.”

With the publication of his book Story of a Secret State in 1944, Jan Karski became known as one of the first people who tried to warn the West about the Holocaust. The book was a bestseller with over 400,000 copies sold. Today, Karski’s remarkable account of wartime resistance and the activities of the Polish underground government still stands as a major contribution to history and literature. We at Georgetown University Press feel honored to have the privilege to contribute to Karski’s legacy by making this important story available once again to an American audience.


Spying in America Coming in Fall 2012

June 15, 2012

GalleyCat just announced our contract to publish former director of the National Clandestine Service Michael Sulick’s new book Spying in America. The book details a history of more than thirty espionage cases inside the United States. These cases include Americans who spied against their country, spies from both the Union and Confederacy during the Civil War, and foreign agents who ran operations on American soil. Some of the stories are familiar, such as those of Benedict Arnold and Julius Rosenberg, while others, though less well known, are equally fascinating. GalleyCat also mentions rumors of a possible TV show based on the book. Is there any truth to these conjectures? Let’s just say that GU Press has learned well from our authors of the covert services, and for the time being, our lips are sealed


Afghanistan: The Way(s) Out of America’s Longest War

January 20, 2012

The American public’s frustration with the stalemate in Afghanistan grows each month that passes with no clear forward progress. Most wonder if this is a war that we can win. And if we can, what would “winning” even look like? Strengthening Afghan governance and civil society appears to be key, but how can this state-building be accomplished? What moral obligation do we owe to the Afghan people, and how can we fulfill it?

Afghan Endgames is a new book that seeks to provide a balanced, comprehensive, and realistic assessment of the alternatives for restoring peace and stability to Afghanistan. Bringing together some of the finest minds in the fields of military strategy, foreign policy, history, anthropology, ethics, and mass communications, the volume presents a range of options—from immediate withdrawal of all coalition forces to the maintenance of an open-ended, but greatly reduced military presence. The contributors weigh the many costs, risks, and benefits of each alternative to present the reader with a survey that is neither right nor left leaning, merely one that separates bad policy from the good.

While respecting the range of the contributors’ opinions, the volume editors distill the competing views and conclude by making recommendations for US policy going forward. Among the editors’ suggestions:
• Stop pushing specific withdrawal dates, and accept that we will need to stay as long as is necessary
• Create a customized military strategy that relies on Special Forces, station only five thousand troops in the country, and close most bases and downsize those that remain
• Encourage local political power rather than centralized control by the government in Kabul
• End expensive development projects, encourage local investment on necessary projects, and halt infrastructure efforts in areas where violence is tolerated and exported
• Reduce funding to Pakistan and strongly encourage India to lessen its presence in Afghanistan

Leon Fuerth, former national security advisor to vice president Al Gore and now a professor at The George Washington University, applauds Afghan Endgames for the advice it offers saying it “could not be more timely. [This book] offers a chance to think afresh. It also offers a new perspective on strategic goal setting for issues still in the future.”


Mind the Memory Gap: Lessons to Heed from British Intelligence History

January 17, 2012

Identifying “lessons learned” is not new—the military has been doing it for decades. However, members of the worldwide intelligence community have been slow to extract wider lessons gathered from the past and apply them to contemporary challenges. Learning from the Secret Past is a collection of ten carefully selected cases from post-World War II British intelligence history. Some of the cases include the Malayan Emergency, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Northern Ireland, and the lead up to the Iraq War. Each case is accompanied by authentic documents and illuminates important lessons that today’s intelligence officers and policymakers—in Britain and elsewhere—should heed.

Written by former and current intelligence officers, high-ranking government officials, and scholars, the book details intelligence successes and failures, discusses effective structuring of the intelligence community, examines the effective use of intelligence in counterinsurgency, explores the ethical dilemmas and practical gains of interrogation, and highlights the value of human intelligence and the dangers of the politicization of intelligence.

The lessons learned from this book stress the value of past experience and point the way toward running effective intelligence agencies in a democratic society. Scholars and professionals worldwide who specialize in intelligence, defense and security studies, and international relations will find this book to be extremely valuable.

Former chief of the British Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), Sir John Scarlett, recommends Learning from the Secret Past, calling it “thought-provoking.” Likewise, Keith Jeffery, of Queen’s University Belfast and author of MI6: The History of the Secret Intelligence Service, 1909-1949, describes it as “an admirably executed combination of important case studies, apt primary source material, and illuminating analysis. Each example studied has clear contemporary relevance and I commend the book to policymakers and scholars, as well as anyone interested in the myriad significant ways intelligence has impinged on modern British history and politics.”

About the Editors: Robert Dover is a senior lecturer in international relations at Loughborough University (UK) and the author of The Europeanization of British Defence Policy, 1997-2005. Michael S. Goodman is a senior lecturer in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London, official historian of the Joint Intelligence Committee (UK), and author of Spying on the Nuclear Bear: Anglo-American Intelligence and the Soviet Bomb


Religious Leaders: Peacemakers or Warmongers?

January 13, 2012

Civil war and conflict within countries is the most prevalent threat to peace and security in the opening decades of the twenty-first century. A pivotal factor in the escalation of tensions to open conflict is the role of religious elites in exacerbating tensions along identity lines by giving the ideological justification, moral reasoning, and call to violence. Between Terror and Tolerance examines the varied roles of religious leaders in societies deeply divided by ethnic, racial, or religious conflict. The chapters in this book explore cases where religious leaders have justified or catalyzed violence along identity lines, and other instances where they have played a critical role in easing tensions or even laying the foundation for peace and reconciliation.

This volume features thematic chapters on the linkages between religion, nationalism, and intolerance, transnational intra-faith conflict in the Shi’a-Sunni divide, and country case studies of societal divisions or conflicts in Egypt, Israel and Palestine, Kashmir, Lebanon, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Sri Lanka, Sudan, and Tajikistan. These cases explore how religious leaders in divided societies interpret the relationships among religious doctrines and human rights; define exclusive and inclusive national identities; articulate the connections among religion, state control, and state policy; rhetorically justify and/or mobilize for war; and ameliorate or mediate conflict.

Between Terror and Tolerance concludes by exploring the book’s findings and their implications for policies and programs of international non-governmental organizations that seek to encourage and enhance the capacity of religious leaders to play a constructive role in conflict resolution. Between Terror and Tolerance strives to find the path to a less violent world and answers some crucial questions: Under what conditions do religious leaders justify or catalyze violence along identity lines? And under what conditions do religious leaders lay the foundation, advocate, and sometimes directly mediate for peace?

About the Editor: Timothy D. Sisk is professor of international and comparative politics and director of the Center for Sustainable Development and International Peace at the Joseph Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver. He is the author or editor of several books including International Mediation in Civil Wars: Bargaining with Bullets.


Immortal is Recommended Reading for Military Officers

January 4, 2012

Vice Admiral Mark Fox, commander of the US Fifth Fleet that was in the news over the holidays due to Iran’s threats to close the Strait of Hormuz, recommends the GU Press book Immortal: A Military History of Iran and Its Armed Forces by Steven Ward to his officers in the region. The only single-volume English-language survey of Iran’s military history, Immortal shows that Iran’s soldiers, from the famed “Immortals” of ancient Persia to today’s Revolutionary Guard, have demonstrated through the centuries that they should not be underestimated. This history also provides background on the nationalist, tribal, and religious heritages of the country to help readers better understand Iran and its security outlook. Fox’s recommendation was recently featured in Time.com’s Battleland blog. The full list of recommended reading can be found on the Fifth Fleet’s website.


New South Asia in World Affairs Book Series

November 8, 2011

Dr. T.V. Paul introduces a new series from Georgetown University Press: South Asia in World Affairs. This book series aims to publish high-quality scholarly works about the region and its international relations, especially about topics relating to security and foreign policy, but also political economy, development, and the environment as they impinge on security, foreign policy, and global order. The series is open to works that advance theory or examine contemporary policy. Countries included in the series are: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Dr. Paul is the series editor.


DC Book Event: Reverse Mission: Transnational Religious Communities and the Making of US Foreign Policy

November 8, 2011

November 10, 2011, 04:00PM
Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs
3rd floor conference room
3307 M Street, Suite 200
Washington, DC  20007
Event open to the public

Timothy Byrnes will discuss his new book Reverse Mission: Transnational Religious Communities and the Making of US Foreign Policy. Offering a unique perspective on the role of religion in world politics, Byrnes examines the ways in which communities of Catholic priests and nuns (including, prominently, the Society of Jesus) attempt to shape American foreign policy in order to protect the interests of their “brothers and sisters” abroad.

Timothy A. Byrnes is a professor of Political Science at Colgate University. He is the author and editor of a number of books on religion and politics, including Catholic Bishops in American Politics, Transnational Catholicism in Postcommunist Europe, and Religion in an Expanding Europe. He received his PhD from Cornell University.

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