I have written before of my puzzlement at the huge advances paid by publishers for books by politicians and celebrities because I could not see how these books could possibly be interesting enough to recoup in sales what the publishers seemed to expect. At least when it comes to politicians, there is a ready-made market of their own political parties and partisan groups that may buy these books in bulk as gifts to be given out to loyalists. And when it comes to celebrities in the arts and sports worlds, there does seem to be a fascination with what they are ‘really’ like, an appeal that completely eludes me.
But this latest report is that in the wake of the recent personal attacks on her by Donald Trump, MSNBC news presenter Mika Brzezinski has been offered a huge advance for a three-book deal that will get her a paycheck in the ‘high six figures’. That seems utterly inexplicable to me, unless the publishers think that all the Trump-haters will snap up the books. It beats me how she can fill three books with information that would interest readers to buy it in large quantities. Even one book would be a stretch.
Like many in the world of big-name media, Brzezinski’s path to success was possibly greased by nepotism, by being the daughter of Zbigniew Brzezinski, a Democratic party Cold War warrior who was president Jimmy Carter’s National Security Advisor. He was the architect of the policy adopted secretly in 1979 of drawing the USSR into Afghanistan and creating a Vietnam-style situation for them by using the CIA to arm, train, and support Mujahedeen resistance groups that later morphed into the Taliban that then sprouted al Qaeda as an off-shoot, a classic example of ‘blowback’.
Carter signed the secret and deeply fateful directive on July 3 of that year. In launching the effort, “we knowingly increased the probability” of a Soviet invasion, said Brzezinski in a 1998 interview.
When that invasion occurred months later, Brzezinski told Carter, “We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam War.”
To accomplish that goal, the Carter and Reagan administrations, along with Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, funded, organized, transported, armed and trained Salafist extremists to fight the Red Army in a holy war on behalf of Islam. Among those who joined the cause were future al Qaeda leaders Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri and Khalid Sheikh Mohammad.
The enduring global impact of this 10-year program bears emphasis: The CIA and Saudi GID recruited jihadists from all around the Muslim world, creating relationships and networks that would evolve into not only al Qaeda, but also ISIS and many other Salafist terrorist groups across several continents.
Apparently, one of her books will offer advice to millennials entering the job market. No doubt she will stress the importance of making sure that you are born to a powerful, well-connected, and influential father.