Kandahar. An ancient desert crossroads, and as of fall of 2001, ground zero for the Taliban and al-Qa’ida in southern Afghanistan. In the north, the U.S.-supported Northern Alliance, the Afghan organization opposed to the Taliban regime, has made progress on the battlefield and Kabul has fallen. But in the south, the country is still under the Taliban’s sway, and al-Qa’ida continues to operate there. With no “Southern Alliance” for the U.S. to support, a new strategy is called for. Veteran CIA officer Duane Evans is dispatched to Pakistan to “get something going in the South.” This is the true story of Evans’s unexpected journey from the pristine halls of Langley to the badlands of southern Afghanistan. Within hours after he watched the horrors of 9/11 unfold during a chance visit to FBI Headquarters, Evans begins a personal and relentless quest to become part of the U.S. response against al-Qa’ida. This memoir tracks his efforts to join one of CIA’s elite teams bound for Afghanistan, a journey that eventually takes him to the front lines in Pakistan, first as part of the advanced element of CIA’s Echo team supporting Hamid Karzai, and finally as leader of the under-resourced and often overlooked Foxtrot team. Relying on rusty military skills from Evans’s days as a Green Beret and brandishing a traded-for rifle, he moves toward Kandahar, one of only a handful of Americans pushing forward across the desert in the company of Pashtun warriors into some of the most dangerous, yet mesmerizingly beautiful, landscape on earth. The ultimate triumph of the CIA and Special Forces teams, when absolutely everything was on the line, is tempered by the US tragedy that catalyzed what is now America’s longest war. Evans’s very personal adventure that unfolds within the pages of Foxtrot in Kandahar: A Memoir of a CIA Officer in Afghanistan at the Inception of America’s Longest War, which concludes with an analysis of opportunities lost in the years since his time in Afghanistan, should be required reading for everyone interested in modern warfare.