In With the Old, Out With the New

Nicholas Schmidle, "Next-Gen Taliban," NYT Magazine (Jan 2008). Schmidle’s relatively new on the war-witness writing scene, and I’m really enjoying his coverage of crisis issues. He’s been fairly prolific, his work appearing in, among others, Slate, Mother Jones, The New Republic, the Washington Post, and the NYT, primarily on Pakistan, but also on Bangladesh, Central Asia, and Iran. A bibliography of his writing can be found on his personal website here. "Next-Gen Taliban" takes an inside look at the state of militancy within the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (J.U.I.), "widely considered," Schmidle writes, "a political front for numerous jihadi organizations, including the Taliban." Old school militants, he suggests, threatened by the new extremism of the younger generation, are facing a situation in which survival means moderating their own views of governance, and "trying to preserve democracy from being destroyed". 

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