Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Invisible Armies: An Epic History of Guerrilla Warfare from Ancient Times to the Present

Invisible Armies: An Epic History of Guerrilla Warfare from Ancient Times to the Present

  • March 8, 2013
Max Boot

Jeane J. Kirkpatrick Senior Fellow in National Security Studies, Council on Foreign Relations


Invisible Armies is a global history of guerrilla uprisings through the ages. Beginning with the first insurgencies in the ancient world—when Alexander the Great discovered that fleet nomads were harder to defeat than massive conventional armies—Max Boot takes the reader from the Jewish rebellion against the Roman Empire up through the horrors of the French-Indochina War and the shadowy, post-9/11 battlefields of today. Relying on a diverse cast of unforgettable characters—not only Mao and Che but also the legendary Italian nationalist Giuseppe Garibaldi, the archaeologist-turned–military commander T. E. Lawrence, and the “Quiet American” Edward Lansdale, among others—Boot explodes everything we thought we knew about unconventional combat.

“a magisterial account of insurgency and counterinsurgency across the ages”

—Washington Post 

Max Boot is the Jeane J. Kirkpatrick senior fellow in national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.  He is the author of two widely acclaimed books: The Savage Wars of Peace: Small Wars and the Rise of American Power and War Made New: Technology, Warfare, and the Course of History, 1500 to Today. Max Boot is also a contributing editor to The Weekly Standard and The Los Angeles Times, a blogger for Commentary, and a regular contributor to The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and many other publications. Max Boot has advised military commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan, and his books have been assigned reading by the military services.

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