“Harnden presents behind-the-scenes events and recently declassified facts in this exceptionally detailed guide to Afghanistan’s geography, ethnic groups, and persistent and dire conflicts, culminating in the Al Qaeda uprising at the Qala-i Jangi fortress where America suffered its first casualty in the war on terror. Harnden scoured the archives and extensively interviewed surviving witnesses to shed light on this pivotal time. First Casualty is the closest readers will come to really knowing a spy; Harnden intimately portrays who these men were and are as America attempts to extract itself from its longest war.”