The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals

The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals

Jane Mayer / Aug 21, 2019

The Dark Side The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals In the days following September the most powerful people in the country were panic stricken The decisions about how to combat terrorists and strengthen national security were made in a state of ut

  • Title: The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals
  • Author: Jane Mayer
  • ISBN: 9780739375921
  • Page: 310
  • Format: Audio CD
  • In the days following September 11, the most powerful people in the country were panic stricken The decisions about how to combat terrorists and strengthen national security were made in a state of utter chaos and fear, but the key players, Vice President Dick Cheney and his powerful, secretive adviser David Addington, used the crisis to further a long held agenda to enhaIn the days following September 11, the most powerful people in the country were panic stricken The decisions about how to combat terrorists and strengthen national security were made in a state of utter chaos and fear, but the key players, Vice President Dick Cheney and his powerful, secretive adviser David Addington, used the crisis to further a long held agenda to enhance presidential powers to a degree never known in U.S history.The Dark Side is a riveting narrative account of how the U.S made terrible decisions in the pursuit of terrorists decisions that not only violated the Constitution, but also hampered the pursuit of Al Qaeda In gripping detail, acclaimed New Yorker writer and bestselling author Jane Mayer relates specific cases, shown in real time against the larger tableau of Washington, looking at the intelligence gained or not and the price paid In all cases, whatever the short term gains, there were incalculable losses in terms of moral standing, our country s place in the world, and its sense of itself The Dark Side chronicles one of the mostdisturbing chapters in American history, one that will serve as the lasting legacy of the George W Bush presidency.

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    • Best Download [Jane Mayer] ✓ The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals || [Nonfiction Book] PDF ✓
      310 Jane Mayer
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      Posted by:Jane Mayer
      Published :2018-010-09T03:26:51+00:00

    About "Jane Mayer"

      • Jane Mayer

        Jane Mayer is a staff writer for The New Yorker and the author of three bestselling and critically acclaimed narrative nonfiction books She co authored Landslide The Unmaking of the President, 1984 1988, with Doyle McManus, and Strange Justice The Selling of Clarence Thomas, with Jill Abramson, which was a finalist for the National Book Award Her book The Dark Side The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals, for which she was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, was named one of The New York Times s Top 10 Books of the Year and won the J Anthony Lukas Book Prize, the Goldsmith Book Prize, the Edward Weintal Prize, the Ridenhour Prize, the New York Public Library s Helen Bernstein Book Award for Excellence in Journalism, and the Robert F Kennedy Book Award It was also a finalist for the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award.For her reporting at The New Yorker, Mayer has been awarded the John Chancellor Award, the George Polk Award, the Toner Prize for Excellence in Political Reporting, and the I F Stone Medal for Journalistic Independence presented by the Nieman Foundation at Harvard Mayer lives in Washington, D.C.She is a Washington based staff writer for The New Yorker, specializing in political and investigative reporting Before that, she was a senior writer and front page editor for The Wall Street Journal, as well as the Journal s first female White House correspondent.


    1. there’s something i call ‘generational narcissism’ which is basically the naive belief that one’s generation is special and different and unique for no other reason than that one is part of it. there are a few varieties:1) new-age generational narcissism: the belief that the ‘universe’ (that vague overused and totally unhelpful term) has destined some serious astronomical, astrological, apocalyptical and/or spiritual kind of paradigm shift to occur in one’s time. i.e. age of aquari [...]

    2. The title comes from Dick Cheney’s vow to go to the “Dark Side” in the battle against terrorism. There is a wealth here of drill-down detail about the mechanisms by which America abandoned the constitution in favor of a unitary, imperial president (and really vice president) who believes that l’estat est moi. I have read a fair number of books that delve into the Bush administration and nowhere have I seen the comprehensive depth Mayer has given to her examination of how America has trad [...]

    3. I was well aware of the excesses of the Bush administration’s war on terror, but still Mayer’s book was shocking. It’s been eleven years since we saw the first pictures of abuse in Abu Ghraib. Mayer starkly brings back the memory. This detailed account of disregard for human decency, false imprisonments, and torture brought on feelings of disgust and revulsion. Given some of the rhetoric in the current presidential campaign, this book is as relevant as ever. I can’t recommend it highly e [...]

    4. "He who does battle with monsters needs to watch out lest he in the process becomes a monster himself." - Friedrich NietzscheIn reaction to Britain's brutal treatment of American prisoners of war, George Washington vowed that this new Democracy would "take a higher road." Thus, the U.S. military doctrine was born, based upon the belief that "Brutality undermines military discipline and strengthens the enemy's resolve, while displays of humanity could be used to tactical advantage." Since its inc [...]

    5. Eyeopening! Glad I opted to read this as it explained a lot of what I'd picked up in bits in pieces from other media over the years, but I thought to myself, "No way! We have too many checks and balances for a single individual to take over." The author did a nice job of timelining what happened after September 11, 2001 and how key players and top officials were swept out of the way while Vice President Dick Cheney and his "adviser" David Addington took over The White House. In my opinion, David [...]

    6. Required reading for every American. Jane Mayer documents how a handful of people in the Bush Administration changed the moral course of America and tarnished our global reputation in the name of "keeping us safe." Benjamin Franklin said that those who would sacrifice liberty for safety deserver neither liberty nor safety. Well, that's pretty much where we are at. Yes, there have been no more attacks on U.S. soil since 9/11. But that "safety" was not a product of torture. Just because they got a [...]

    7. John Adams famously described the American government as one of "laws, not of men." In eight years, the Bush Administration has reacted to the attacks of September 11, 2001, by turning that dictum on its head in their zeal to ensure that another attack does not occur on their watch. In particular, the President's confidence that he is a "good man," has led him to embrace the advice of a ruthless cabal within the United States government whose first article of faith is that there are no limitatio [...]

    8. At the end of WW2, Europe was devastated, Germany in particular. It had reaped what it had sowed. German prestige was non-existent after the horrors of Nazism and the prestige of the United States could not have been higher. The whole world looked to the U.S. for the future.Just last week, I saw a ranking of countries in world public opinion. Germany was by far and away number one and the United States was well down the list. Less than 75 years after being at the top, the U.S. has been easily su [...]

    9. No book has ever made me feel more disgusted and outraged. The fact that the highest leaders in the U.S. government had condoned and authorized torture was really not news to me after seeing the photos of Abu-Ghraib (in 2004) and the Oscar-winning documentary Taxi to the Dark Side (in 2008). I had also read numerous reports about suspicions and evidence of abuse at Guantanamo and various "black sites" around the world. But the details of abuse of power, secrecy, and coverup by many of our highes [...]

    10. Mayer tells her story slowly, deliberately, carefully placing interview upon interview until we are faced with a pile of facts so distastful that it is difficult to imagine we turned faces away for so long. It is true we "didn't know," but the secrecy surrounding the internal operations of the White House is no excuse for allowing what we all may have suspected--that we were losing our moral high ground in the war against terror by stooping so low as to disregard our own, and international laws, [...]

    11. Well, I finished the book. Quick read, and most of it I had read already in the pages of The New Yorker. Still, it is nice and convenient to have Jane Mayer's articles all in one continuous narrative. The book, needless to say, is quite harrowing. There is no doubt that the American Government is torturing. Bush, Cheney, et alia have all admitted as much, only they don't, of course, use the word "torture", thinking like little school kids if they avoid the word they'll also avoid punishment. Ins [...]

    12. This book makes my blood boil. These people, who not only authorized torture, but encouraged it, have disgraced our country and screwed up our struggle against jihadism. It is a story of incompetence and arrogance, centered on the Vice Presidency and the VP's grey eminence, David Addington.Notable in the book are the stories of honorable men with military and conservative backgrounds who could not stomach what was going on and resisted it.Also notable is the argument that torture, ultimately, is [...]

    13. A painstaking and just amazingly detailed account of how extreme rendition (in English, kidnapping) and extreme interrogation (in English, torture) came to be public policy in the current administration. I can’t say you’ll enjoy reading this book, but it’s a book that should be read, at the very least as a cautionary tale as to just how far things can go wrong when nobody’s watching. It is reassuring to report that there are heroes, like David Brant, the head of NCIS, Alberto Mora, Couns [...]

    14. Jane Mayer is extremely readable, she has managed to create an overview of the Executive Order that Cheney and Addington put together that vastly expanded Presidential powers, cleared the way for renditions, shredded the Geneva Convention, presented weak and strained arguments that made torture acceptable, and expanded the surveillance of Americans by their government and gave the President unrestrained war powers. She then shows how these expanded powers created a reign of terror where America [...]

    15. For those of us, who believe in the Constitution’s sanctity and liberal American values and ideals, the past fifteen years have been one bad news after another. There were the lies which led to waging war on Iraq and the killing of tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis. It was followed by officially sanctioned torture of prisoners, followed by pervasive electronic surveillance of all US citizens, all of which again denied blatantly by the government at first. We have had suspects, which include [...]

    16. We had high expectations of this work, which though perhaps unfair, were disappointed. Hoping for a fierce and well ordered indictment, though indictment there was what we all too often found ourselves upon was a more-or-less (given the inherent difficulty of access) complete, but often scattered, episodic and anecdotal tour of the federal legal bureaucracy as it dealt with the possession and interrogation of captives in the G.W. Bush administration’s “War on Terror.” Here are sips and hin [...]

    17. For me, Mayer's book brought to mind a line from Yeats (one of my favorite poets)"The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity." In this case, it's Cheney, Rumsfeld, John Yoo, David Addington, and a host of other White House appointees whose dogmatic belief that coersion and torture are the only way to extract information from alleged terrorists (despite hard evidence to contrary - the best evidence we got out of anyone came from FBI interrogators, using old-f [...]

    18. I heard and read about some of the main facts written in this book, but when Jane Mayer put the story altogether I became even more sickened by the administration's (Cheney and Addington's) authorization of the capture and torture of suspected terrorists, keeping them without charges of crimes in order to keep their illegal activities secret in Guantanamo and other hidden torture sites throughout the world. (When the stories leaked out, they then attempted to grant immunity to themselves and tho [...]

    19. Read the STOP SMILING interview with author Jane MayerLift Every VoiceBy James Hughes(This interview originally appeared in the third annual STOP SMILING 20 Interviews Issue)After millions embraced Barack Obama on election night in Chicago, though still weeks before the record crowds that flooded the National Mall and its tributaries became flyover country for a departing president bound for Dallas dormancy, I spoke with author Jane Mayer about the range of emotions and challenges churned up in [...]

    20. The Dark Side, that name conjures up many images from the Bush presidency. Unlike many books that dealt with this subject, this one seems largely free of political bias and presents information in a clear, neutral way. From the very beginning, when 9/11 happened, you get the sense that something bad was about to happen, and indeed it does. The political disaster that was going to grip Washington, and the United States, was a kind of perfect storm that The Dark Side examines. Not only did the adm [...]

    21. I guess I'm getting to be squarely middle-aged; I find these days I'm tearing through non-fiction of a political nature -- books that help me secure my place in these insane times. Mayer's book is dense, detailed, and disturbing. I can't figure out whether this kind of writing is politically partisan or if it's just a case of the scary f***king truth being succinctly reported. It was helpful for a scatter-brained reader like myself to hop around a bit from section to section, then circle back f [...]

    22. The only book (ok, aside from the series that included Zizek's little book) about 911 I've ever read. It'll probably remain that way for some time, but this is a great work of journalistic history. It made me understand things about the Bush administration (or, according to this book's overarching argument, the Cheney administration) that I never fully grasped. A lot of the broad strokes here we all know already, but it makes such a difference to read them in a succinct historical narrative inst [...]

    23. In this book about the US' authorities reaction to 9-11 Jane Mayer is in fine form. Although the book came out in 2008 it holds up remarkably well. The story is a well-known one. The authorities (particularly the CIA and the Presidency) were caught napping and tried to make up for that lapse by unleashing the hounds of hell. Particularly damning is a conspiracy between high ranking government lawyers headed by VP Cheney's counsel Mr Addington (in this book, a bully and a heartless fanatic) and i [...]

    24. Kinda worried I’ll overhype it for some people by saying this, but here we go any way: this is the best book on the Bush Administration’s worst sins I’ve ever read and I’d go so far as to call it essential reading. Jane Mayer’s an amazing writer and journalist and she documents how the US became monsters to fight monsters with unrelenting and disturbing clarity and detail. There were moments throughout the book, particularly to do with the Abu Ghraib photos, that made me physically sic [...]

    25. Mayer's deeply researched document specifies who was responsible for the Bush era failed war on terror and torture house of horrors, and you'll be shocked to know, many of them are still around in power. John Yoo is professor of law at UC Berkeley, and David Addington is an exec at the heritage foundation. The specific boorish, ignorant, arrogant way they and others committed documented, prosecutable war crimes are astounding.Cheney especially appears as heinous as I remember and imagined him. E [...]

    26. An incredibly comprehensive and distressing account of America's "war on terror." The book was also much more sobering to read in today's climate than if I had read it perhaps two or three years ago. The gross overreach and human rights violations Mayer recounts make me skeptical that any meaningful checks and balances to the executive branch exist today. A grave reality given who runs our current administration.

    27. After the 9/11/2001 terrorist attacks, the United States declared a War on Terror. A bunch of right-wing lawyers working in the Bush administration decided that, unlike in America's other wars such as World War II and Vietnam, the people fighting for the other side have no rights. This included soldiers of the Taliban, the de facto government of almost all of Afghanistan. Several hundred people were seized, held without due process, mistreated and often tortured in the legal offshore zone of Gua [...]

    28. Not since I read Naomi Klein’s The Shock Doctrine have I clenched my fists while reading. Jane Mayer’s vitriolic political investigation is a fitting companion piece to Klein’s humanist manifesto, detailing the gruesome policies that were unlawfully created in the wake of the September 11 attacks. Through countless interviews and in-depth character description, Mayer shows how a country’s human rights record was irreperably damaged by a paranoid and deceptive government, willing to pay a [...]

    29. Vice President Cheney indicated that the U.S. might have to cross over to "the dark side" in order to fight terrorism effectively. This book provides a good in-depth review of those decisions, their effects and effectiveness. We've all heard and read a lot about the effectivenss of torture in questioning prisoners, and whether the enhanced interrogation techniques that had been used in Iraq and Guantanamo, or in secret renditions to other nations, have been legal or effective. Many of our Nation [...]

    30. I found in this book a great deal of often scattered information. Much of it I was already familiar with from other people's investigations of the torture policy of the White House and of clandestine U.S. interrogation research since WWII. The book did little to pull together Ms. Mayer's discoveries or provide a coherent narrative. I found myself creating a timeline to keep track of who knew what when, said what to whom when, etc. It may be a book helpful to military and presidential historians, [...]

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