Guardians of God

Inside the Religious Mind of the Pakistani Taliban

Price: 695.00 INR

We sell our titles through other companies
Disclaimer :You will be redirected to a third party website.The sole responsibility of supplies, condition of the product, availability of stock, date of delivery, mode of payment will be as promised by the said third party only. Prices and specifications may vary from the OUP India site.

ISBN:

9780199468249

Publication date:

07/10/2016

Hardback

238 pages

Price: 695.00 INR

We sell our titles through other companies
Disclaimer :You will be redirected to a third party website.The sole responsibility of supplies, condition of the product, availability of stock, date of delivery, mode of payment will be as promised by the said third party only. Prices and specifications may vary from the OUP India site.

ISBN:

9780199468249

Publication date:

07/10/2016

Hardback

238 pages

Mona Kanwal Sheikh

This book explains how the Taliban, who view themselves as guardians of God, think it is their holy mission to protect Islam from the armies of the ‘wrong’ faiths. Paradoxically, their violent defence of the sacred encompasses worldly concerns such as social justice, peace, and political order. Guiding us to a finer understanding of the Taliban worldview, Sheikh builds a case for dialogue with an enemy that may choose to lay down arms if its grievances are correctly understood.

Rights:  World Rights

Mona Kanwal Sheikh

Description

When Mona Kanwal Sheikh stepped into the volatile conflict zones of Pakistan to interview the Taliban, she encountered many challenging situations. Once, shortly after she declined to meet a militant at Islamabad’s Marriott Hotel—a symbol of American dominance—a terrorist bomb targeted the hotel killing 53 people. The fact that she was shadowed by intelligence agencies also impeded her endeavour to get close to the Taliban.
Undeterred, Sheikh interviewed several militants often depicted by the Western media as highly secretive, ruthless, and unapproachable. She had hours of conversation with Taliban militants and their supporters, ate mangoes with them, joined them in prayers, and listened to emotional anthems about the necessity to join jihad. Years of first-hand research later, she offers the most comprehensive account of the Pakistani Taliban and their religious justifications for jihad. This book explains how the Taliban, who view themselves as guardians of God, think it is their holy mission to protect Islam from the armies of the ‘wrong’ faiths. Paradoxically, their violent defence of the sacred encompasses worldly concerns such as social justice, peace, and political order.
Guiding us to a finer understanding of the Taliban worldview, Sheikh builds a case for dialogue with an enemy that may choose to lay down arms if its grievances are correctly understood.

About the Author

Mona Kanwal Sheikh
is Senior Researcher in International Security at the Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark. She is a leading expert on the Pakistani Taliban.

Mona Kanwal Sheikh

Table of contents


List of Illustrations
Acknowledgements
List of Abbreviations and Acronymns
Prologue

Introduction: Worlds Apart
1. The Rise of the Pakistani Taliban
2. Jihad to Protect God and His Laws
3. The Demolition of Islam’s Forts
4. Anti-Shia and Punjab-based Resistance
5. Religion in the Taliban narratives
6. The Justice of Violence
Conclusion: A Rational Enemy?

Glossary
Taliban Communication Materials
Index
About the Author

Mona Kanwal Sheikh

Mona Kanwal Sheikh

Review

‘… the most thorough and detailed book on the Pakistani Taliban—a phenomena that, like ISIS, is wrapped in secrecy, subterfuge, and a reluctance to bare themselves to outsiders. Sheikh has broken those boundaries and penetrated the mindset, traditions, religiosity, and ideological beliefs of their leaders and foot soldiers.…’
—Ahmed Rashid, the author of Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and Fundamentalism in Central Asia

‘This remarkable and timely book enters the minds and the mindset of the Pakistani Taliban … establishing a fresh approach to the study of activist religious organizations. This should be required reading for anyone concerned about the cultural politics of the region and the global rise of strident new movements of religious violence.’
—Mark Juergensmeyer, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, author of Terror in the Mind of God

‘A unique glimpse into the birth and operation of one of the most important new millenarian groups, the Pakistan Taliban … [Sheikh’s] study has implications for the policy community in Pakistan and the West, which must grapple with this latest variety of millenarianism.’
—Stephen P. Cohen, Brookings Institution, Washington, DC, author of Shooting for a Century: The India–Pakistan Conundrum

Mona Kanwal Sheikh

Description

When Mona Kanwal Sheikh stepped into the volatile conflict zones of Pakistan to interview the Taliban, she encountered many challenging situations. Once, shortly after she declined to meet a militant at Islamabad’s Marriott Hotel—a symbol of American dominance—a terrorist bomb targeted the hotel killing 53 people. The fact that she was shadowed by intelligence agencies also impeded her endeavour to get close to the Taliban.
Undeterred, Sheikh interviewed several militants often depicted by the Western media as highly secretive, ruthless, and unapproachable. She had hours of conversation with Taliban militants and their supporters, ate mangoes with them, joined them in prayers, and listened to emotional anthems about the necessity to join jihad. Years of first-hand research later, she offers the most comprehensive account of the Pakistani Taliban and their religious justifications for jihad. This book explains how the Taliban, who view themselves as guardians of God, think it is their holy mission to protect Islam from the armies of the ‘wrong’ faiths. Paradoxically, their violent defence of the sacred encompasses worldly concerns such as social justice, peace, and political order.
Guiding us to a finer understanding of the Taliban worldview, Sheikh builds a case for dialogue with an enemy that may choose to lay down arms if its grievances are correctly understood.

About the Author

Mona Kanwal Sheikh
is Senior Researcher in International Security at the Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark. She is a leading expert on the Pakistani Taliban.

Read More

Reviews

‘… the most thorough and detailed book on the Pakistani Taliban—a phenomena that, like ISIS, is wrapped in secrecy, subterfuge, and a reluctance to bare themselves to outsiders. Sheikh has broken those boundaries and penetrated the mindset, traditions, religiosity, and ideological beliefs of their leaders and foot soldiers.…’
—Ahmed Rashid, the author of Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and Fundamentalism in Central Asia

‘This remarkable and timely book enters the minds and the mindset of the Pakistani Taliban … establishing a fresh approach to the study of activist religious organizations. This should be required reading for anyone concerned about the cultural politics of the region and the global rise of strident new movements of religious violence.’
—Mark Juergensmeyer, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, author of Terror in the Mind of God

‘A unique glimpse into the birth and operation of one of the most important new millenarian groups, the Pakistan Taliban … [Sheikh’s] study has implications for the policy community in Pakistan and the West, which must grapple with this latest variety of millenarianism.’
—Stephen P. Cohen, Brookings Institution, Washington, DC, author of Shooting for a Century: The India–Pakistan Conundrum

Read More

Table of contents


List of Illustrations
Acknowledgements
List of Abbreviations and Acronymns
Prologue

Introduction: Worlds Apart
1. The Rise of the Pakistani Taliban
2. Jihad to Protect God and His Laws
3. The Demolition of Islam’s Forts
4. Anti-Shia and Punjab-based Resistance
5. Religion in the Taliban narratives
6. The Justice of Violence
Conclusion: A Rational Enemy?

Glossary
Taliban Communication Materials
Index
About the Author

Read More