Confronting the Chaos

A Rogue Historian Returns to Afghanistan
If you are a member, log in to receive member pricing
Published:July 1, 2009
By Sean M. Maloney (Author)

While there is a vast amount of literature available on Iraqi operations, until now little has been written about the counterinsurgency and stabilization operations in Afghanistan. With this book, a Canadian military historian, who has observed field operations in Afghanistan since 2003, offers a clear view of what is happening in that country. It is the first to look at units unknown to most Americans—the provincial reconstruction teams, the embedded training teams, the strategic advisory team, among others—that helped the Afghan people establish a government. How exactly do you stabilize a country that has been at war for nearly thirty years? Challenging the Chaos is the first book to look at the Provincial Reconstruction Teams, the Embedded Training Teams, Strategic Advisory Team-Afghanistan and other little-known units that helped the Afghan people establish a government after the Taliban fell. With the historical and political odds stacked against them, the men and women of these vital organizations worked shoulder-to shoulder with Afghans at all levels of society, and at great personal risk in a lethal and unforgiving environment. Their efforts helped stave off another Afghan civil war and successfully prevented the Taliban from exploiting the chaos left in the wake of their 2001-02 collapse. Challenging the Chaos is a personal story written by a Canadian military historian who observed these efforts as they unfolded in 2004-05. Sean. Maloney takes us on a journey from exotic and poppy-laden Badkashan province in the north, into international intrigue in the capital, Kabul, and then to Kandahar province in the south, where the threat of IED attacks lay around the corner on a daily basis. This work details the operations of the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs), which played a vital role in stabilizing Afghanistan after the Taliban were removed from power. It provides understanding about how the international effort in Afghanistan and the enemy has evolved since 2003 so we can succeed in Afghanistan. Afghanistan is not Iraq and it is dangerous to template one war onto the other. The war in Afghanistan is unique, as is our response to the insurgency-Afghanistan, its people, and its insurgent’s needs to be understood on their own terms and not in relationship to the American experience in Iraq. The United State’s closest ally in Afghanistan, next to the Afghan people, is Canada and Canada has played a key role in the effort- this goes unrecognized by American politicians and the American people even while Canadian soldiers are working, fighting and dying alongside American soldiers.

List Price: $34.95
Clear The Decks Price*:$3.50
Member Price: $3.50
Product Details
  • Subject: War in Afghanistan
  • Hardback : 296 pages
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press (July 1, 2009)
  • ISBN-10: 1591145082
  • ISBN-13: 9781591145080
  • Product Dimensions: 6 X 9 in
  • Shipping Weight: 0 lb

Sean M. Maloney is the Historical Advisor to the Chief of the Land Staff and is an Associate Professor of History at Royal Military College of Canada. He served in Germany as the historian for 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade, Canada’s Cold War NATO commitment in Europe. He is the author of nine books, including the controversial Canada and UN Peacekeeping: Cold War by Other Means and Learning to Love the Bomb: Canadian Nuclear Weapons and the Cold War. Dr. Maloney also has extensive research experience in the Balkans, Middle East, and particularly in Afghanistan where he has observed counterinsurgency operations in the field since 2003. He lives in Kingston, Ontario, Canada

More by this Author

Confronting the Chaos
While there is a vast amount of literature available on Iraqi operations, until now little has been...Read More
Fighting for Afghanistan
Sean Maloney, the first Canadian military historian to go into battle since the Korean War, brings...Read More

Related Content

Canadian Subs Protect Fisheries
What to do when foreign fishing vessels violate your waters? The creative Canadian solution was... Read More

Events and Conferences

Radio Interview
9:35am EST, Read More
Radio Interview
7:00pm ET, with John Batchelor, Read More
Radio Interview
6:00pm PDT (9PM EST), with Barbara Simpson, Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Reviews


Conferences and Events

WEST 2019

Wed, 2019-02-13 - Fri, 2019-02-15

Sharpening the Competitive Edge: Are We Ready to Compete, Deter, and Win Globally? Wednesday, 13 February - Friday, 15 February...

2019 U.S. Naval Institute Member Event

View All

From the Press

23 January - Book Talk

Wed, 2019-01-23

9 February - Presentation

Sat, 2019-02-09

Why Become a Member of the U.S. Naval Institute?

As an independent forum for over 140 years, the Naval Institute has been nurturing creative thinkers who responsibly raise their voices on matters relating to national defense.

Become a Member Renew Membership