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Finalist for the William E. Colby Military History Award

Bryan Burrough, New York Times Business section
“For those of us who start feeling drowsy at the very mention of the words ‘Treasury Department,’ this book is an eye-opener. Under Mr. Zarate, and his successors, Treasury quietly built new capabilities that owe less to junk bonds than to James Bond…. ‘Treasury’s War’ does a fine job of shedding light on a new and significant aspect of international relations that many of us may not be aware of, and that is likely to gain in importance in the years to come.”

Stewart Baker, Wall Street Journal
“Mr. Zarate brings verve and the joy of combat to this and other tales… In Mr. Zarate's hands, what could have been a dry series of think-tank papers becomes a lively narrative filled with heroes, villains and fools.”

Geoff Dyer, Financial Times
"An entertaining insider’s account of America’s ‘new breed of financial power’... full of interesting accounts of the way smart sanctions were applied... a valuable history of a hidden but essential part of America’s response to 9/11.”

Jordan Chandler Hirsch, Washington Post
“[A] thorough, thoughtful insider’s account… The true value of Zarate’s book lies in explaining the difference between traditional sanctions and this new form of financial warfare.”

Library Journal
"A unique view into the new and potentially devastating world of fiscal warfare… Zarate’s well-documented work gives a firsthand report of strategies not often known or publicized in this newest and perhaps most effective form of waging war.”

ABA Banking Journal
“I consider it a must-read for anyone who wants to know where we are, where we’ve been, and what challenges lie ahead… Treasury’s War is detailed, interesting, and sincere.”

National Interest
“Zarate’s book admirably underscores the dire national-security threat posed by the almost-unfathomable level of our national debt… There is much in Zarate’s book that enlightens us, and he gets many things right and proposes some innovative ideas.”

Arnaud de Borchgrave, UPI
“One of the world's most challenging assignments -- explained in vivid, dramatic detail by Juan C. Zarate, a former super sleuth in the U.S. government's long campaign to find and disrupt al-Qaida's terrorist funding in the Worldwide Web…Zarate's "Treasury's War" is a gripping electronic whodunit in a constantly changing environment where inequalities are widening and where technology is destroying more jobs than it creates…. This is the first book that lifts the veil of secrecy on the financial power [Zarate’s team] marshaled against America's enemies.”

Kirkus Reviews
“A bracing account by a knowledgeable authority.”

General Michael Hayden, former Director of CIA and NSA
“Juan Zarate’s groundbreaking Treasury’s War illuminates an underappreciated and under commented revolution in international affairs. Beset by nontraditional enemies and threats, the United States in the Bush administration leveraged America’s place in the global financial system to create some important ‘asymmetrical power’ of its own. As advocate and architect of this new approach, Zarate is well placed to tell the tale of America’s most unique precision
guided weapon and he does so with detail, candor, and perspective.”

Sam Nunn, former U.S. Senator
"For those wanting to know how financial power and influence are wielded in the world, this is the book. Juan Zarate not only tells a gripping story, but lays out the policy implications and future for the use of this power. This is a must-read about the evolution of financial warfare over the past decade and how it will continue to play a central role in the nation's security."

Peter Bergen, author of Manhunt: The Ten-Year Search for bin Laden, from 9/11 to Abbottabad
“Juan Zarate is known as one of the world’s leading experts on terrorism. His new book is the riveting account of how the United States has gone to war financially with terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda and rogue states such as Iran. Treasury’s War is deeply researched and well written and is the definitive narrative of this hitherto largely unknown war.”

Admiral Mike Mullen, 17th Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff
"Juan Zarate has written an exceptional book about a vital area of our national security very few people understand. I observed first-hand the evolution and targeting of illegal financing led by Zarate and other pioneers who remain on the frontier of fighting international corruption. Juan's insights will educate every reader."

“Well qualified to provide readers with an insider’s view, [Zarate] describes innovative and integrated financial warfare techniques that have proved effective in neutralizing and weakening such adversaries as Al Qaeda, North Korea, Iran, Iraq, and Syria.”

Mark Dubowitz and Annie Fixler, The Journal of International Security Affairs
"Juan Zarate's book is a richly deserved celebration of their unsung success--and an essential guide to how their financial power can be most effectively used."

Amit Kumar, National Security Law Journal
“An insightful account of the evolution, development, implementation, and fine tuning of the United States Department of the Treasury’s (“Treasury’s”) tools of financial warfare in the post 9/11 world, as well as a reinvention of its role in exercising these tools. This interesting account combines Zarate’s eye for meticulous detail, zeal, focus, and his powers of cogent argument as a skillful prosecutor with the incomparable expertise and research insights of a scholar, and the vision and foresight of a thinker…Thanks to the rich factual information contained and the great insights offered into the role of a number of national security and foreign policy officials involved in designing and flexing this financial warfare toolkit, this book is a compelling read for policy makers, academics, students, and practitioners interested in the phenomenon of financial warfare and its use and relevance in today’s world of asymmetric threats, stateless actors, and rogue states that imperil U.S. security. In addition, the book is a brilliant exposé of the intricacies of the workings of the national security policy formulation and implementation processes, as well as how interagency policy processes in the national security realm interact with and affect U.S. foreign policy priorities and outcomes.”

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Juan C. Zarate is a senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the senior national security analyst for CBS News, and a visiting lecturer of law at Harvard Law School. Prior to that, he served as the deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security advisor for combating terrorism, and the first ever assistant secretary of the Treasury for terrorist financing and financial crimes. He appears frequently on CBS News programs, PBS’s NewsHour, NPR, and CNN, and has written for the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and more. He and his family live in Alexandria, Virginia. Follow him on Twitter: @JCZarate1

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14 von 14 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
"Money is Their Enabler." 21. November 2013
Von John A Cassara - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
For over ten years, the United States has been attempting to identify, penetrate, disrupt, and dismantle a myriad of financial networks of rogue regimes, proliferators, terrorist groups, state sponsors of terrorism, and criminal syndicates. Juan Zarate, one of the chief architects of this strategy, recently released his first book; Treasury’s War – The Unleashing of a New Era of Financial Warfare. The insider’s account both pulls back the curtain of this shadowy world and gives a sobering assessment of many of the new financial threats we will be facing in the coming years.

Many readers know Juan Zarate as a national security commentator for CBS News. His perspective and insights originate from his former positions as Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Advisor for Combating Terrorism and the First Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes.

I know Juan as my well-respected former boss at the Department of Treasury. He is hard-working, a gentleman, and a patriot.
In the book, Zarate argues convincingly that “money is a common denominator that connects disparate groups and interests-often generating networks of convenience aligned against the United States. Money is their enabler. It is also their Achilles’’ heel.”

Zarate describes how after September 11 a small cadre of dedicated professionals within Treasury used imagination and innovative tactics to unleash a new type of financial warfare that harnessed the use of the dollar as the world’s primary currency, access to the American financial markets, globalization, new forms of financial data and intelligence, freezing orders, regulatory actions, and “smart” new applications of sanctions and designations to undermine American foes including Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, Iran, North Korea, Syria, narco-terrorists, kleptocrats and others.

As a proud former Treasury Special Agent, I appreciated finally getting an insider’s account of how Treasury’s enforcement arm (Customs, ATF, and the Secret Service) was amputated at the time of the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. Many of us are still bitter. The last ten years have demonstrated that our anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist finance efforts have suffered over this myopic and politically expedient decision. As I have argued for years, and Zarate makes clear, there is a need for a reinvigorated Treasury enforcement arm to focus on illicit financial flows.

Another section of the book that I found very important is when Zarate masterfully lays out many of the threats we face in the “coming financial wars.” It is sobering reading, particularly because we are simply not prepared.
I applaud the book. However, it is important to understand that Zarate writes from a 30,000 foot policy maker’s perspective. During much of the same time frame and particularly in the years immediately preceding September 11, my vantage point was that of a financial crimes investigator at the street level. As a result, our assessments – though not our objectives - are vastly different. In my first book, Hide & Seek: Intelligence, Law Enforcement, and the Stalled War on Terror Finance (Potomac Books, 2006) I discuss from a ground level viewpoint the actual implementation of our anti-money laundering / counter-terrorism policies both in the United States and overseas.

For example, over the years successive administrations, politicians from both parties, and apologists for Treasury have praised a series of “tough new sanctions” designed to squeeze our adversaries While this is not the space to debate the efficacy of sanctions, my views have been shaped by investigations of “sanctions busters” in places like Dubai. I would also like to point out that in 2012 the Director of National Intelligence testified that sanctions have had “zero effect” in slowing Iran’s nuclear program. Or to quote an anonymous retired diplomat, “Sanctions always accomplish their principal objective, which is to make those who impose them feel good.”

In addition, Zarate makes no mention of the U.S. 2007 National Anti-Money Laundering Strategy (see: [...]). This is an important policy document that overlapped Zarate’s tenure. Most observers feel that the implementation of our strategy has been a colossal failure. Nor has there been any accountability for the various agencies and departments involved including Treasury. For example, in the book there was no mention of the long-term dysfunction of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) charged with implementing many of the Strategy’s action-items.

And despite Treasury’s Wars upbeat pronouncements and pats-on-the-back, the fact remains that according to the United Nations Office of Drug Control (UNODC), less than one per cent of global illicit financial flows is currently being seized and frozen. It is probably about the same in the United States. In my opinion, a one percent success rate is nothing to boast about.
Zarate does make clear that despite our myriad of new financial tools and countermeasures, our adversaries adapt. And they continue to use effective but simple techniques such as bulk cash smuggling. To put things in perspective, in the United States, our success rate in intercepting bulk cash along the southwest border is approximately .0025 percent!

Indigenous, underground banking systems such as hawala are also almost impervious to the kinds of financial countermeasures described Treasury’s War. To help bring this threat alive, I recently released my first novel, Demons of Gadara. The realistic story told from the vantage point of ground level demonstrates how our adversaries use value transfer and hawala in an act of terror.

Zarate is right to say we are in a “new era” of financial warfare. To me the era is not reassuring. It is frightening.
14 von 14 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Important for US National Policy 6. Oktober 2013
Von R. Axelrod - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Treasury Wars does a fine job of introducing a whole new realm of political power - or at least new in its present incarnation. With the immediateness of an insider, the author demonstrates how financial pressures can work in the middle ground between diplomacy and warfare.

The strength of the book is its clarity, especially in its exposition of how the Treasury Department leveraged the need of nearly all international banks to maintain their reputation. It does a great service in helping to put financial measures in the kit of tools available for pursuing national policy. I was impressed that its value wasn't just in inhibiting terrorist financing, but also in providing leverage for sanctions on states such as Iran and North Korea.

It includes a fascinating account of the vast internal differences between the Chinese financial community and the Chinese foreign policy bureaucracy, and how the former prevailed.

In summary, it's a terrific book - one of the few that can really make a difference in promoting national policy short of armed conflict.
11 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Disappointingly sparse 17. November 2013
Von Ze Reader - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I was very excited for this book, but ultimately I think you're better off reading the NYTimes once a week. The author sketches out Treasury's strategies adequately. However, there is minimal -- if any -- analysis as to why these are effective. He also shies away from comparative analysis, never asking what would work better and/or what could be improved. Finally, he utterly fails to create a narrative -- there's no story to tell, it's more of jumbled summary of high-level government meetings, which are more often than not falsely touted as a success in and of themselves.

I think this is a seriously under-addressed topic, and really wanted to enjoy this book. I hope future authors examine the issue in better detail, and with a more critical eye.
16 von 20 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
By bureaucrats, for bureaucrats 28. November 2013
Von Steve Harrison - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
This book is in the genre that might be called "bureaucratic history." Its author is a bureaucrat and tells us much about the things that matter to bureaucrats -- his agency's layers of management, the byzantine structure of the bureaucracy including the names and acronyms of myriad other agencies, details of what happened at meetings he attended, even the story of his courageous fight for more prestigious office space. He tells us about planning, and about more planning, and about planning to plan. He also tells us that financial warfare is a good and effective thing -- and tells us and tells us, repeatedly and at great length, as if it were a concept too complex for non-bureaucratic minds.

What Zarate doesn't tell us, much, is how his financial warfare actually works. Frankly, one gets the feeling that his own understanding is rather thin, though to his credit he makes it reasonably clear that he was relying on "experts" who know about such things. The government discourages or proscribes dealings with certain banks, for example, and that deters those in other countries from dealing with them because they might lose access to American capital markets. By what day-to-day details does this process function? You'll need to look elsewhere to learn that. (While you're at it you might also check out what a "hawala" is since Zarate uses the word for several chapters before bothering about a brief and vague explanation.)

In the first several chapters almost everyone's name is followed rather mechanically by a clause mentioning some irrelevant aspect of his or her appearance or personality. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that that was someone's -- perhaps an editor's -- attempt to make the book more interesting. A more useful editorial contribution would have been to teach the author what the word "leverage" means so that he did not use it on almost every page, sometimes to mean "use," sometimes to mean "take advantage of," sometimes to mean "refer to," often to mean something that isn't entirely clear (perhaps even to the author) except as a word usable between subject and object. Maybe I'm wrong that Zarate doesn't know a whole lot about international capital movements but he really, really does need to learn more verbs.

Zarate apparently wants to feel that he was fighting a war but the loss he seems the most sorry about is the reduction of his bureaucracy following the establishment of the Department of Homeland Security. And the victory he is the most proud of is building it back up again. But bureaucratic wins and losses can be fleeting; at this writing the current administration has reversed course and is on the way to undoing much of the more visible things he did.

This is not to say that Treasury didn't fight the good fight and help to protect us all. The book's worth is to inform us of that; its just not all that good -- unless you're a bureaucrat.
23 von 30 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Zarate understands the new form of warfare 6. September 2013
Von Kevin D. Freeman - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Almost two years ago I released a book, Secret Weapon: How Economic Terrorism Brought Down the U.S. Stock Market and Why It can Happen Again [ASIN:1596987944 Secret Weapon: How Economic Terrorism Brought Down the U.S. Stock Market and Why It can Happen Again]. My book documented my research for the Pentagon that concluded we were in a Global Economic War. Now, Juan Zarate takes the proposition from a Treasury Department view and does a masterful job explaining how and why we are fighting a financial war. He goes further, however, acknowledging that we have some serious vulnerabilities that match with the concerns I shared in Secret Weapon.

I found myself agreeing with and fascinated by Zarate's tale of Treasury's War. Even more, I knew the validity of his concerns described in the later chapters. I have been to Washington DC literally dozens of times, speaking with officials inside DoD at the highest levels, Treasury, the SEC, FBI, DIA, DNI, IARPA, DARPA, and just about every alphabet soup agency you can list. Very few people in government today understand what Juan Zarate shares in this book.

Our dollar is at risk. Our oil supply is at risk. Our manufacturing capacity is at risk. Our cyber systems are at risk and the greatest vulnerability may be the financial markets. When you add it all up, we are in a global economic war. We can win if we follow Zarate's advice at the conclusion of his book:

"The US intelligence community should reframe how it treats economic security matters by creating a new national economic security discipline. This would require institutionalizing private outreach and eliminating current stovepipes between economic, financial, and commercial expertise and the national security community."

"A new economic security approach requires a new paradigm.. This involves an evolution from the classic, state-based national security actions toward deeper involvement of the private sector in arenas previously confined to the halls of government, with a commensurate and widening appreciation within governments of the power of markets and the private sector to influence international security."

"The financial wars are coming. It is time to redesign a national economic security model to prepare for them. If we fail to do so, the United States risks being left vulnerable and left behind as other competitors race toward the future."

Bottom line: Every American who cares about our nation's future should buy this book and understand its message. Critical aspects of life and living can and will be impacted by the financial wars he describes.
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