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The Connection: How al Qaeda's Collaboration with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America

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In the wake of 9/11 no one knew when the next attack would come, or where it would come from. America's enemies seemed gathered on all sides, and for several nerve-racking months, we lived in fear that the perpetrators might be plotting another action or, worse, that our most dangerous enemies -- al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein's murderous regime in Iraq -- could be banding to In the wake of 9/11 no one knew when the next attack would come, or where it would come from. America's enemies seemed gathered on all sides, and for several nerve-racking months, we lived in fear that the perpetrators might be plotting another action or, worse, that our most dangerous enemies -- al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein's murderous regime in Iraq -- could be banding together against us. The Bush administration and CIA director George Tenet warned against complacency and pointed to growing indications that al Qaeda and Iraq were in league. But their case was undercut by unnamed intelligence officials, skeptical politicians, and a compliant media. So America relaxed. A comforting consensus settled in: Osama bin Laden was an impassioned fundamentalist, Saddam a secular autocrat. The two would never, could never, work together. ABC News reported that there was no connection between them, and the New York Times said so too, and pretty soon just about everyone agreed. Just about everyone was wrong. In The Connection, Stephen Hayes draws on CIA debriefings, top-secret memos from our national intelligence agencies, and interviews with Iraqi military leaders and Washington insiders to demonstrate that Saddam and bin Laden not only could work together, they did -- a curious relationship that stretches back more than a decade and may include collaboration on terrorist acts, chemical-weapons training, and sheltering some of the world's most wanted radicals. Stephen Hayes's bombshell Weekly Standard piece on this topic was cited by Vice President Cheney as the "best source of information" about the Saddam-al Qaeda connections. Now Hayes delves even deeper, exposing the inner workings of America's deadliest opponents and providing a clear-eyed corrective to reams of underreported, politicized, and just plain wrong information. The Connection is both a gripping snapshot of the War on Terror and a case study in how bureaucratic assumptions and media arrogance can put us all at risk.


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In the wake of 9/11 no one knew when the next attack would come, or where it would come from. America's enemies seemed gathered on all sides, and for several nerve-racking months, we lived in fear that the perpetrators might be plotting another action or, worse, that our most dangerous enemies -- al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein's murderous regime in Iraq -- could be banding to In the wake of 9/11 no one knew when the next attack would come, or where it would come from. America's enemies seemed gathered on all sides, and for several nerve-racking months, we lived in fear that the perpetrators might be plotting another action or, worse, that our most dangerous enemies -- al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein's murderous regime in Iraq -- could be banding together against us. The Bush administration and CIA director George Tenet warned against complacency and pointed to growing indications that al Qaeda and Iraq were in league. But their case was undercut by unnamed intelligence officials, skeptical politicians, and a compliant media. So America relaxed. A comforting consensus settled in: Osama bin Laden was an impassioned fundamentalist, Saddam a secular autocrat. The two would never, could never, work together. ABC News reported that there was no connection between them, and the New York Times said so too, and pretty soon just about everyone agreed. Just about everyone was wrong. In The Connection, Stephen Hayes draws on CIA debriefings, top-secret memos from our national intelligence agencies, and interviews with Iraqi military leaders and Washington insiders to demonstrate that Saddam and bin Laden not only could work together, they did -- a curious relationship that stretches back more than a decade and may include collaboration on terrorist acts, chemical-weapons training, and sheltering some of the world's most wanted radicals. Stephen Hayes's bombshell Weekly Standard piece on this topic was cited by Vice President Cheney as the "best source of information" about the Saddam-al Qaeda connections. Now Hayes delves even deeper, exposing the inner workings of America's deadliest opponents and providing a clear-eyed corrective to reams of underreported, politicized, and just plain wrong information. The Connection is both a gripping snapshot of the War on Terror and a case study in how bureaucratic assumptions and media arrogance can put us all at risk.

30 review for The Connection: How al Qaeda's Collaboration with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America

  1. 5 out of 5

    Trekscribbler

    Despite your political leanings, one can read THE CONNECTION and find that there are a wealth of connections between the international terrorism community. It's very clear that the al Qaeda had a massive network of support -- be it financial, material, or providing training space -- and that the organization was intent upon inflicting harm wherever and whenever it say a truly calculated means. I think that Stephen Hayes has done an exceptional job at gathering together what proven and speculativ Despite your political leanings, one can read THE CONNECTION and find that there are a wealth of connections between the international terrorism community. It's very clear that the al Qaeda had a massive network of support -- be it financial, material, or providing training space -- and that the organization was intent upon inflicting harm wherever and whenever it say a truly calculated means. I think that Stephen Hayes has done an exceptional job at gathering together what proven and speculative bits have been exposed, and I think he does an exceptional job at putting it together in a fashion that makes the most sense to the average reader. While the book tries very hard to show a definitive connection between al Qaeda and Iraq, I'm not completely convinced it hits the nail on the head. Yes, it is very clear that members within the Iraqi intelligence community were aware of al Qaeda, offered them support and training facilites, etc., but what the book falls short of convincing me is whether or not Saddam Hussein was aware and/or endorsed these activities. More than anything, I think Hayes underscores that, when you're dealing with intelligence, there very rarely is a "smoking gun" ... rather, there's a lot of smoke one has to peer through in order to get to the bottom in order to reach any conclusions. Kudos to the book for being accessible to the general public: there are an awful lot of difficult names and places (for a non-political thinker and reader like myself). Instead of spending time exploring the background of these folks and places, Hayes concentrates of current events mostly -- 1990s to the present -- in order to make his case.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Nate

    A nice little book that not only catalogues the evidence of connections between Saddam Hussein's regime and Islamic terrorists including Al Qaeda but also gives interesting insight into how the compelling yet inconclusive evidence become ignored as the more predominant "the intelligence was fixed" narrative took hold. Probably somewhat dated at this point and surely to be replaced by a more definitive account but good for what it is. A nice little book that not only catalogues the evidence of connections between Saddam Hussein's regime and Islamic terrorists including Al Qaeda but also gives interesting insight into how the compelling yet inconclusive evidence become ignored as the more predominant "the intelligence was fixed" narrative took hold. Probably somewhat dated at this point and surely to be replaced by a more definitive account but good for what it is.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sean McCormick

  4. 5 out of 5

    John Ervin

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

  6. 4 out of 5

    Del

  7. 4 out of 5

    John Mangan

  8. 4 out of 5

    Michael Cohen

  9. 4 out of 5

    Rich

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ryan Smith

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kenneth Jennings

  12. 4 out of 5

    Laura

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ebreit42

  14. 5 out of 5

    Dan

  15. 4 out of 5

    Anthony Ragan

  16. 5 out of 5

    Ina Cawl

  17. 4 out of 5

    Daniel

  18. 4 out of 5

    BookSwim.com Book Rental Online

  19. 4 out of 5

    Josh Rodgers

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sean Nelson

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shammking

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ryan Hetkowski

  23. 5 out of 5

    John Pattillo

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jim Tanler

  25. 4 out of 5

    D

  26. 4 out of 5

    Mwegemer

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mark Alexis

  28. 4 out of 5

    Bart

  29. 4 out of 5

    Scott

  30. 5 out of 5

    Hilary

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