Sword of Persia: Nader Shah, from Tribal Warrior to Conquering Tyrant

Bloomsbury Publishing
Free sample

Nader Shah, ruler of Persia from 1736 to 1747, embodied ruthless ambition, energy, military brilliance, cynicism and cruelty. His reign was filled with bloodshed, betrayal and horror. Yet, Nader Shah is central to Iran's early modern history. From a shepherd boy, he rose to liberate his country from foreign occupation, and make himself Shah. He took eighteenth century Iran in a trajectory from political collapse and partition to become the dominant power in the region, briefly opening the prospect of a modernising state that could have resisted colonial intervention in Asia. He recovered all the territory lost by his predecessors, including Herat and Kandahar, and went on to conquer Moghul Delhi, plundering the enormous treasures of India. Nader commanded the most powerful military force in Asia, if not the world. He repeatedly defeated the armies of Ottoman Turkey, the preeminent State of Islam, overran most of what is now Iraq and threatened to take Baghdad on several occasions.
But from the zenith of his success he declined into illness, insane avarice and horrific savagery, committing terrible atrocities against the Persian people, his friends, and even his family, until he finally died as violently as he had lived. The "Sword of Persia" recreates the story of a remarkable, ruthless man, capable of both charm and brutality. It is a rich narrative, full of dramatic incident, including much new research into original Iranian and other material, which will prove indispensable to historians and students. The book includes many contemporary illustrations, and maps.
Read more
Collapse

About the author

MICHAEL AXWORTHY studied History at Peterhouse, Cambridge and was Head of the Iran Section, Foreign and Commonwealth Office from 1998 to 2000. He has been to Iran many times both as a visitor and as a diplomat. He now teaches Middle East History at Exeter
Read more
Collapse
Loading...

Additional Information

Publisher
Bloomsbury Publishing
Read more
Collapse
Published on
Mar 24, 2010
Read more
Collapse
Pages
368
Read more
Collapse
ISBN
9780857724168
Read more
Collapse
Read more
Collapse
Best For
Read more
Collapse
Language
English
Read more
Collapse
Genres
History / Middle East / General
Read more
Collapse
Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
Read more
Collapse

Reading information

Smartphones and Tablets

Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.

Laptops and Computers

You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.

eReaders and other devices

To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.
I.B.Tauris in association with the Iran Heritage Foundation

The decline and fall of Safavid Iran is traditionally seen as the natural outcome of the unrelieved political stagnation and moral degeneration which characterised late Safavid Iran. "Persia in Crisis" challenges this view. In this ground-breaking new book, Rudi Matthee revisits traditional sources and introduces new ones to take a fresh look at Safavid Iran in the century preceding the fall of Isfahan in 1722, which brought down the dynasty and ushered in a long period of turbulence in Iranian history. Inherently vulnerable because of the country's physical environment, its tribal makeup and a small economic base, the Safavid state was fatally weakened over the course of the seventeenth century. Matthee views Safavid Iran as a network of precarious alliances subject to perpetual negotiation and the society they ruled as an uneasy balance between conflicting forces. In the later seventeenth century this delicate balance shifted from cohesion to fragmentation.
An increasingly detached, palace-bound shah; a weakening link between the capital and the outlying provinces; the regime's neglect of the military and its shortsighted monetary policies combined to exacerbate rather than redress existing problems, leaving the country with a ruler too feeble to hold factionalism and corruption in check and a military unable to defend its borders against outside attack by Ottomans and Afghans. The scene was set for the Crisis of 1722. This book makes a major contribution to our understanding of Iranian history and the period that led to two hundred years of decline and eclipse for Iran.
A chance encounter diverted Abdolreza Ansari from completing his PHD in the US, and set him on a professional journey which mirrored the prolific rise and the precipitous fall of the regime of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi of Iran. Ansari's government career took off when he became Iran's Treasurer General at the age of 32. In this role he restructured the fiscal management of the country and revamped its social security system. He was appointed Minister of Labor and Social Affairs at 34, where he created the Workers' Welfare Bank to support the labour force of the country. As Iran was about to enter a period of rapid development, Ansari was called upon to take charge of the largest development project of the time, the construction of the Dez Dam in the oil-rich province of Khuzestan. Subsequently, Ansari was appointed Minister of Interior where he conducted national parliamentary and city council elections in a single day for the first time in Iran's history. His plan for the urban rehabilitation of towns and population centres continues to be the basis for municipal governance to this day. Ansari's political career was derailed following a cabinet reshuffle.
However, he was hand-picked by the Shah to manage the many charitable organizations headed by the monarch's twin sister, Princess Ashraf Pahlavi. When the Iranian government began preparations for the commemoration of Iran's 2500 years of continued monarchical rule, he was appointed deputy head of the celebration's organizing committee. Prior to the 1979 Revolution, he initiated, introduced and implemented the programmes of Protection of Families and the National Movement for Philanthropy. Ansari's proximity to the Iranian royal court including the Shah and Princess Ashraf and his encounters with a multitude of well-known personalities make these conversations a unique and valuable historical source for the pre-revolutionary period in Iran."
In Revolutionary Iran, Michael Axworthy guides us through recent Iranian history from shortly before the 1979 Islamic revolution through the summer of 2009, when Iranians poured into the streets of Tehran by the hundreds of thousands, demanding free, democratic government. Axworthy explains how that outpouring of support for an end to tyranny in Iran paused and then moved on to other areas in the region like Egypt and Libya, leaving Iran's leadership unchanged. The Iranian Revolution of 1979 was a defining moment of the modern era. Its success unleashed a wave of Islamist fervor across the Middle East and signaled a sharp decline in the appeal of Western ideologies in the Islamic world. Axworthy takes readers through the major periods in Iranian history over the last thirty years: the overthrow of the old regime and the creation of the new one; the Iran-Iraq war; the reconstruction era following the war; the reformist wave led by Mohammed Khatami; and the present day, in which reactionaries have re-established control. Throughout, he emphasizes that the Iranian revolution was centrally important in modern history because it provided the world with a clear model of development that was not rooted in Western ideologies. Whereas the world's major revolutions of the previous two centuries had been fuelled by Western, secular ideologies, the Iranian Revolution drew its inspiration from Islam. Revolutionary Iran is both richly textured and from one of the leading authorities on the region; combining an expansive scope with the most accessible and definitive account of this epoch in all its humanity.
From leadership expert, former Navy SEAL, "American Grit" feature player, and author of Worth Dying For: A Navy SEAL's Call to a Nation, Rorke Denver, the bestselling account of how he helped create the U.S. Navy SEALS of today. Rorke Denver trains the men who become Navy SEALs--the most creative problem solvers on the modern battlefield, ideal warriors for the kinds of wars America is fighting now. With his years of action-packed mission experience and a top training role, Lieutenant Commander Denver understands exactly how tomorrow's soldiers are recruited, sculpted, motivated, and deployed.

Now, Denver takes you inside his personal story and the fascinating, demanding SEAL training program he now oversees. He recounts his experience evolving from a young SEAL hopeful pushing his way through Hell Week, into a warrior engaging in dangerous stealth missions across the globe, and finally into a lieutenant commander directing the indoctrination, requalification programs, and the "Hero or Zero" missions his SEALs undertake.

From his own SEAL training and missions overseas, Denver details how the SEALs' creative operations became front and center in America's War on Terror-and how they are altering warfare everywhere. In fourteen years as a SEAL officer, Rorke Denver tangled with drug lords in Latin America, stood up to violent mobs in Liberia, and battled terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. Leading 200 commando missions, he earned the Bronze Star with V for valor. He has also served as flag aide to the admiral in charge and spent the past four years as executive officer of the Navy Special Warfare Center's Advanced Training Command in Coronado, California, directing all phases of the basic and advanced training that prepare men for war in SEAL teams. He recently starred in the film Act of Valor. He is married and has two daughters.

Ellis Henican is a columnist at Newsday and an on-air commentator at the Fox News Channel. He has written two recent New York Times bestsellers, Home Team with New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton and In the Blink of an Eye with NASCAR legend Michael Waltrip.

With all the SEALs' recent successes, we have been getting a level of acclaim we're not used to. But something important has been missing in this warm burst of publicity . Correcting that is my mission here.
My own SEAL dream was launched by a book. My hope is that this one teaches lessons that go far beyond the battlefield, inspiring a fresh generation of warriors to carry on that dream.
-Lieutenant Commander Rorke Denver
©2019 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google|Location: United StatesLanguage: English (United States)
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.