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Thieves of State : Why Corruption Threatens Global Security - Antonia Chayes

Thieves of State

Why Corruption Threatens Global Security

Paperback Published: 17th September 1996
ISBN: 9780393352283
Number Of Pages: 272

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The world is blowing up. Every day a new blaze seems to ignite: the bloody implosion of Iraq and Syria; the East-West standoff in Ukraine; abducted schoolgirls in Nigeria. Is there some thread tying these frightening international security crises together? In a riveting account that weaves history with fast-moving reportage and insider accounts from the Afghanistan war, Sarah Chayes identifies the unexpected link: corruption.

Since the late 1990s, corruption has reached such an extent that some governments resemble glorified criminal gangs, bent solely on their own enrichment. These kleptocrats drive indignant populations to extremes ranging from revolution to militant puritanical religion. Chayes plunges readers into some of the most venal environments on earth and examines what emerges: Afghans returning to the Taliban, Egyptians overthrowing the Mubarak government (but also redesigning Al-Qaeda), and Nigerians embracing both radical evangelical Christianity and the Islamist terror group Boko Haram. In many such places, rigid moral codes are put forth as an antidote to the collapse of public integrity.

The pattern, moreover, pervades history. Through deep archival research, Chayes reveals that canonical political thinkers such as John Locke and Machiavelli, as well as the great medieval Islamic statesman Nizam al-Mulk, all named corruption as a threat to the realm. In a thrilling argument connecting the Protestant Reformation to the Arab Spring, Thieves of State presents a powerful new way to understand global extremism. And it makes a compelling case that we must confront corruption, for it is a cause not a result of global instability.

About the Author

An award-winning former NPR correspondent, foreign policy expert, and entrepreneur with ten years' experience in Afghanistan, Sarah Chayes is an associate at the Carnegie Endowment and the author of The Punishment of Virtue. She lives in Washington, DC.

Industry Reviews

"For anyone confused by how the world ended up in such a state, I would strongly recommend Sarah Chayes's book. It provides a fascinating way of looking at the turmoil, and a series of policy proposals that could upend how we confront it." -- The Telegraph

ISBN: 9780393352283
ISBN-10: 0393352285
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 272
Published: 17th September 1996
Publisher: WW Norton & Co
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 21.0 x 13.8  x 1.5
Weight (kg): 0.22

Earn 48 Qantas Points
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