Osama bin Laden was the most wanted man in American history—an enemy who brought the United States what President George W. Bush called “a day of fire,” and ushered in a new era of terrorism. It took a decade of blood and sacrifice, of determination and frustration, but finally, in a nighttime raid at the end of a dirt road in Pakistan, the hunt for Bin Laden ended with a gunshot. It was a dramatic climax to a long and painful chapter.
But now what? The terrorist threat that has defined American policy since the attacks of 9/11 did not die with Bin Laden in his walled compound near Islamabad. Radicals still wish us harm, and we must fight on.
In this provocative collection of essays edited and introduced by Pulitzer Prize winner Jon Meacham, a group of penetrating analysts and leaders look ahead to the world after Bin Laden—to the future of Al Qaeda, of Afghanistan, of Pakistan. We explore the political, military, and cultural implications of the post–Bin Laden war on terror. From Richard N. Haass of the Council on Foreign Relations to former Secretary of State James A. Baker III, from historian and journalist Evan Thomas to former U.S. Army officer Andrew Exum, Beyond Bin Laden gives listeners intelligent, deeply informed, and urgent glimpses of what comes next.
Beyond Bin Laden is read by Gayle Humphrey and Eric Conger.
• Jon Meacham, executive editor, Random House
• James A. Baker III, former Secretary of State
• Karen Hughes, former counselor to President George W. Bush and former Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy
• Richard N. Haass, president, Council on Foreign Relations
• Bing West, author, The Wrong War, and former Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs
• Andrew Exum, fellow, Center for a New American Security
• Daniel Markey, senior fellow for India, Pakistan, and South Asia, Council on Foreign Relations
• Evan Thomas, award-winning historian and former editor-at-large, Newsweek
About Jon Meacham
Jon Meacham is the author, most recently, of Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power, a #1 New York Times bestseller that has been named one of the best books of the year by The New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, Entertainment Weekly, The Seattle Times, and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Meacham received the Pulitzer Prize for American Lion, his bestselling 2008 biography of Andrew Jackson. He is also the author of the New York Times bestsellers Franklin and Winston and American Gospel. Executive editor and executive vice president of Random House, Meacham is a contributing editor to Time magazine, a former editor of Newsweek, and has written for The New York Times and The Washington Post, among other publications. He is a regular contributor on Meet the Press, Morning Joe, and Charlie Rose. A Fellow of the Society of American Historians, Meacham serves on the boards of the New-York Historical Society, the Churchill Centre, and The McCallie School. He is a former trustee and regent of Sewanee: The University of the South, and has served on the vestries of St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue and Trinity Wall Street church in New York City. Born in Chattanooga in 1969, Meacham was educated at The McCallie School and at Sewanee: The University of the South, where he was salutatorian and Phi Beta Kappa. He began his career as a reporter at The Chattanooga Times. He and his wife live with their three children in Nashville and in Sewanee.
About Karen Hughes
Karen Hughes has been described as ‘the most powerful woman ever to serve in the White House” (Dallas Morning News
) and President George W. Bush’s “most essential advisor” (ABC News
). ‘The rule of thumb in any White House is that nobody is indispensable except the president,” said The New York Times
, But Karen Hughes has come as close to that description as any recent presidential aide.”
As Counselor to The President for his first eighteen months in the White House and as his communications director since he first ran for Governor of Texas in 1994, Mrs. Hughes has been a crucial influence in President Bush’s inner circle. When he first moved to Washington, President Bush told members of the White House staff that he wanted Karen Hughes in the room whenever any major decisions were made.
During her tenure in the Bush White House, Mrs. Hughes advised the president on a wide range of issues, crafted the communications and message strategy for the administration and was responsible for overseeing the Offices of Press Secretary, Media Affairs, Speechwriting and Communications. She helped develop and lead the international communications effort during the early months of the war against terror and was instrumental in creating the new White House Office of Global Communications.
Although she left the White House in the summer of 2002 to move her family home to Texas, Mrs. Hughes continues to advise President Bush on communications strategy through a retainer arrangement with the Republican National Committee.
Ms. Hughes served as Director of Communications for both of President’s Bush’s gubernatorial campaigns in 1994 and 1998 and was one of the “Iron Triangle” of Texans who led his successful campaign for president. She also served as Director of Communications in Governor’s Bush’s state office throughout his tenure as Governor.
Mrs. Hughes is a former Executive Director of the Republican Party of Texas and a former television news reporter for KXAS-TV, the NBC affiliate in Dallas/Fort Worth. She is an elder and long time Sunday school teacher in the Presbyterian church. She is married with a grown stepdaughter and a teenage son, and tried to bring a “Mom’s perspective” to our nation’s public policy debate.
About Bing West
Bing West’s bestselling books have won many awards. West, a Marine combat infantryman, is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a former assistant secretary of defense.