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Sunday, February 13, 2011

How to Break a Terrorist: The U.S. Interrogators Who Used Brains, Not Brutality, to Take Down the Deadliest Man in Iraq by Matthew Alexander

A fascinating read

How to Break a Terrorist: The U.S. Interrogators Who Used Brains, Not Brutality, to Take Down the Deadliest Man in Iraq is a fascinating must-read for anyone who is interested in the war on terror. I was handed this book by a friend and I assumed it was going to be a typical anti-war screed that demands that terrorists be "understood" and coddled.

There is also little fear of coddling with Alexander. He is repulsed and haunted by the senseless butchery that went on in Iraq and was sickened by those that were willing to kill innocents with suicide bombings. Alexander's techniques only prove that his eyes were strictly on the goal - stop Zarqawi.

Alexander's techniques are hardly "touchy-feely" - in a way they are a form of psychological trickery. He fools his interview targets into giving him the information he wants and then expolits their trust. It is also the type of technique that any regular viewer of TV detective shows see every day.

Matthew Alexander
The methods Alexander espouses only make sense to me, a veteran teacher. It is easier to get cooperation from someone that you can create a sense of rapport with, even if it is only temporary.

Anyway, the book reads like a suspense novel. It is a quick and intense read and absolutely riveting and informative.

Well done. Highly recommended.

I rate this book 5 stars out of 5.

Reviewed on May 18, 2009.

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