The following book review is a special for BlackFive readers provided by Elise Cooper. You can read all of our book reviews and author interviews by clicking on the Books category on the right side bar.
Two recent books have highlighted the global terrorist dangers. Daniel Silva in his novel The Black Widow underlines the threat of ISIS and how some have underestimated it. Although the book is fictional the story is all too real. Another book, The Field Of Fight, by Lt. General Michael Flynn delves into the world of ISIS.
The Black Widow, besides being an intoxicating thriller, is also a warning for Americans. While reading the book it appears that real life events mesh with fiction. The undercurrent of reality is front and center as evidenced by the author himself who wrote in the forward, “I take no pride in my prescience. I only wish that the murderous, millenarian terrorism of the Islamic State lived solely on the pages of this story.”
In his non-fiction book Flynn points out that President Obama will never utter the words Islamic Extremist or Radical Islam. Flynn comments about the hypocrisy, “The President should clearly and unambiguously define the enemy that we face and the threat to our way if life. It is radical Islam. We did it while fighting the enemy of Communism and Nazism. ISIS is a very determined enemy who wants to establish a global Caliphate. This political correctness of not naming our enemy is dangerous for the country. I am confident Americans can take the truth.”
Silva also shows the dangers of ISIS through a riveting plot. It begins with ISIS detonating a massive bomb in the Marais district of Paris. Gabriel Allon, the Israeli Mossad Agent poised to become the chief of Israel’s secret intelligence service, is asked by a desperate French government to eliminate the man responsible for the terrible attack. Gabriel and his team get to work and quickly learn that the man behind the attack is a terrorist mastermind who calls himself Saladin. With women all over the world, including the west, joining the ranks of ISIS, Gabriel exploits the terror group’s one weakness by inserting a recruit of his own to infiltrate Saladin’s operation.
Flynn also debunks Democrats and some Republican pundits who say ISIS is being defeated. They point to the terrorist groups loss of land and that these recent attacks are acts of desperation. He strongly disagrees with “those people because that is actually false. We excised them from some village in Iraq like Fallujah, yet they are able to attack the international community in San Bernardino, Orlando, France, Germany, Bangladesh, and Turkey, all of these in recent months. The reason for this is that the enemy has doubled in size and grown in a global geographic footprint in the last six or so years.”
The blame lies squarely in the hands of the Obama Administration, including Hillary Clinton. In the book, Flynn gives high marks to President Bush while lambasting President Obama, “He (Bush) realized the war was going badly, that we were losing, and our entire strategy needed to change. The mere fact that he recognized this and proceeded to make the difficult decisions he eventually made is a leadership characteristic our current president lacks.”
Directly commenting to blackfive.net, “There is no enemy that is unbeatable. Even though President Bush was at the end of his administration he brought in the fresh leadership of General David Petraeus and Robert Gates. We were able to reverse the strategy and come up with a new one to win. Now we are at the end of President Obama’s term; yet, when 99% of President Obama’s advisors told him in to keep 10,000 troops in Iraq to stop the rise of radical terrorism he did not listen. He made a political decision rather than a decision for our national security. This is a weakness in his leadership style. His problem is that he refuses to recognize this strategy is not working and the enemy has grown in capacity.”
One of the problems is that the current President wants to be surrounded by yes men. Flynn recounts in the book how he was fired in 2014 because he went before Congress and spoke of how to keep America safe. When asked about this, he responded, “I was appointed by President Obama twice, as Assistant Director of National Intelligence and the head of the Defense Intelligence Agency. I never met with the President once; imagine that. Why not ask to speak with me about our differences of opinion and my suggestions? To me, this is very disturbing.”
He suspects he was fired because “our agency was very brutally honest about our findings. I am not, nor have I ever been the type of person that will state what the boss wants to hear. I am always very blunt and say what I feel, including offering solutions. I was fired partially due to my honesty about the enemy we are facing, radical Islam. In complete contrast to the President who called ISIS the JV team, I told Congress they were dangerous and growing. Intelligence is about truth to power.”
Although he outlined in the book extensive solutions, he summarized it for blackfive.net, “In order to beat this enemy we need to discredit the ideology. Muslims need to take a more public international stand. To do it they will have to be helped, prompted, and pushed by the US, something we are not doing now. We need to depend on Middle East allies like Israel, Jordan, and Egypt. Finally, something that I have been criticized for is to get Russia involved. They should assume responsibility and pressure Iran to stop their proxy wars. As I show in the book the ties between the Iranian regime and al Qaeda have been a well-established fact.”
Americans should take solace in knowing that Lt. General Flynn is one of Donald Trump’s top foreign policy advisors. Obviously, Mr. Trump is not surrounding himself with yes people, but those who would not sit quietly back if he believes a “President” Trump has the wrong strategy. The Flynn book is a warning of how the Obama Administration has not recognized this country is fighting a war, the field of flight. The same is true for the Silva novel, which is not just a fictional thriller, but a believable scenario of events happening today. Both books are incredible reads with brilliant themes.