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Inside the Anglo-Saxon war machine

Bob Woodward’s invaluable account of the political machinations behind the Afghan conflict echoes my own experiences inside the British government, says Matt Cavanagh

By Matt Cavanagh   177

Barack Obama with his defence secretary Robert Gates, who has been a vital bridge between the White House and the military

Obama’s Wars By Bob Woodward (Simon & Schuster, £20)

Obama’s Wars, the veteran US reporter Bob Woodward’s book on the Afghan conflict, has many flaws. It is overlong, repetitious, and lacks structure, leading some critics to dismiss it as a “notebook dump.” It is insular, mentioning the Afghans only in passing, and Britain and other allies hardly at all. It lacks any feel for the conflict itself, and Woodward has been mocked for writing about an overnight stay…

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