The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America's War in Afghanistan (Compact Disc)

Staff Pick Logo
The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America's War in Afghanistan Cover Image
By Michael Hastings, Lloyd James (Narrated by)
Email or call for price.
Out of Print - Not Available

Staff Reviews

The extensive 2010 military public relations campaign waged in order to expand the Afghanistan War (specifically modeled after the failed counter-insurgency tactics used originally in Algeria by the French in the 1950's, and then again disastrously a half-century later in Iraq by the U.S.) is the basis for this outstanding reporting on U.S. military leaders run amok.


Hastings, a Rolling Stone reporter, was recruited by General Stanley McChrystal's bloated entourage to write an article that they were sure, with the usual public relations massaging, would celebrate the great man facade and make McChrystal a "rock star" warrior for mass adulation. Instead, what Hastings uncovered was a military culture that has become increasing separate from and unchecked by an easily-manipulated civilian leadership, a complicit press, and an indifferent American citizenship.


Sadly, Hastings concludes that in the last decade "we were fighting the wrong war, in the wrong way, in the wrong country." And yet, many of the military elite (as well as a sycophantic U.S. press corps) used the war to advance their careers, their pocketbooks, and their public standing at the horrible cost of the many. And so it goes.

— Will


In June 2010, Michael Hastings published an article in Rolling Stone that made headlines around the world: In "The Runaway General," he reported on a week he spent in Europe with General Stanley McChrystal, the revered soldier in charge of the war in Afghanistan.McChrystal and his staff's unguarded remarks about the White House, our allies and the conduct of the war led President Obama to order McChrystal to the Oval Office, where he was fired unceremoniously. While Hastings' reporting won him a prestigious Polk award and led to two Pentagon investigations, there is much more to his story than the indiscretions of Stanley McChrystal.In The Operators, Hastings, formerly the Baghdad bureau chief for Newsweek, takes the listener behind the diplomatic fa ades to paint a picture of nation-building gone awry. Hastings also takes us on patrol missions in Afghanistan, where he is embedded with American troops, and witnesses firsthand the madness, horror, and existential contradictions of Afghanistan. The Operators combines the acute reportage of a Sebastian Junger with the mad energy of a Michael Herr--it is the painful, powerful tale of a war that can never and will never be won.

About the Author

Michael Hastings (1980-2013) spent two years reporting on Iraq and worked for "Newsweek" starting in 2002. He won the 2010 George Polk Award for magazine reporting, and at the time of his death, he was writing about politics for the news Web site BuzzFeed.

Lloyd James has been narrating since 1996, has recorded over six hundred books in almost every genre, has earned six "AudioFile" Earphones Awards, and is a two-time nominee for the prestigious Audie Award.

Praise For…

"An impressive feat of journalism by a Washington outsider who seemed to know more about what was going on in Washington than most insiders did." ---The New York Times

Product Details
ISBN: 9781452636221
ISBN-10: 1452636222
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Publication Date: January 23rd, 2012
Language: English