Re: Clash of the Civilized (Robert Wright & Christopher Hitchens)
The most important thing I heard was Christopher Hitchens' point that the an understanding of and appreciation for the history of India and the creation of Pakistan are fundamental to any possible success of a our foreign policy in that region.
One of the more useful books to that end is "The Man Who Would Be King: The First American in Afghanistan" by Ben Macintyre.
This has nothing whatsoever do to with the movie or Kiplings short story.
It is based on the real life and experience of Josiah Harlan a quaker from Pennsylvania.
Macintyre is a columnist for The Times of London.
More currently Ghost Wars by NYT reporter Steve Colls gives a contemporary understanding (to the extent that is possible) of Pakistan's ISI
and how they played us while we supported the mujahideen fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan.
Hitchens' comment also makes the point we are again cleaning up the after effects of British colonialism—witch created the Palestinian conflict, modern day Iraq and modern day Afghanistan/Pakistan/Kashmir/India.