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The Rise of Islamic State


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About the Author

Patrick Cockburn is currently Middle East correspondent for the Independent and worked previously for the Financial Times. He has written three books on Iraq's recent history, including The Occupation and Saddam Hussein: An American Obsession (with Andrew Cockburn) as well as a memoir, The Broken Boy and, with his son, a book on schizophrenia, Henry's Demons, which was shortlisted for a Costa Award. He won the Martha Gellhorn Prize in 2005, the James Cameron Prize in 2006, and the Orwell Prize for Journalism in 2009. Winner of the Foreign Affairs Journalist of The Year Award 2014.


"Amid the many books published on the current conflicts reshaping the Middle East, few are as informative or perceptive as The Rise of Islamic State." The Observer "A wealth of telling detail." New York Times "Quite simply, the best Western journalist at work in Iraq today." Seymour Hersh "Packed with first-class research and analysis...Cockburn draws on his considerable journalistic prowess to render this incredibly complex and misunderstood conflict comprehensible. His experience forms a useful text for those at all levels of familiarity with the conflict. His analysis offers an exceptional window into what is without doubt the most vital conflict the world is currently facing." Hans Rollman, PopMatters "Patrick Cockburn spotted the emergence of ISIS much earlier than anybody else and wrote about it with a depth of understanding that was just in a league of its own. Nobody else was writing that stuff at that time, and the judges wondered whether the Government should consider pensioning off the whole of MI6 and hiring Patrick Cockburn instead." British Journalism Awards judges "One of the most accurate and intrepid journalists in Iraq." Sidney Blumenthal "Authoritative." Washington Post "A wonderful book." Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, BBC News "Excellent." Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian "His dispatches from Iraq are an exemplary untangling of the political and social complexity that lies behind one of the world's great crises. He writes fairly, compassionately and clearly, with a steady and knowledgeable eye." Orwell Prize "Has anyone covered this nightmare [in the Greater Middle East] better than the world's least embedded reporter, Patrick Cockburn? Not for my money. He's had the canniest, clearest-eyed view of developments in the region for years now." Tom Engelhardt, TomDispatch "A brilliant book on ISIS." Tom Holland, The Andrew Marr Show "Patrick Cockburn, of the London Independent, is one of the best informed on-the-ground journalists. He was almost always correct on Iraq." Sidney Blumenthal, to Hillary Clinton, Fox News "An invaluable history of IS along with a powerful critique of Western policy in Iraq and Syria and an unsparing analysis of Shia politics in Baghdad." Hugh Roberts, London Review of Books "Cockburn's book The Rise of Islamic State is considered the essential primer on the organization." - Vice

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