U.S. President-elect Donald Trump stands with retired Marine Gen. James Mattis following their meeting at the main clubhouse at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, U.S., November 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Business Insider: MATTIS: The Iraq war was a 'strategic mistake'
President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for Defence Secretary called the invasion of Iraq a “strategic mistake” at a conference last year, in an audio recording obtained by The Intercept.
In a wide-ranging speech at an ASIS International Conference in Anaheim, California that covered everything from Iran, ISIS, and other national security hotspots, retired Marine Gen. James Mattis told attendees: “We will probably look back on the invasion of Iraq as a mistake, a strategic mistake.”
The assertion is not particularly controversial, given the faulty intelligence that led to the invasion, the many missteps afterward, and the unravelling of a country that eventually gave birth to the terrorist group ISIS.
But it is interesting as it’s the first known instance of Mattis portraying the invasion in a negative light, especially given his leadership of 1st Marine Division in 2003, which he led across the border and, eventually, into Baghdad.
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Update #1: Iraq Was Probably a “Mistake,” Said Gen. James Mattis, Trump's Defense Pick (The Intercept)
Update #2: Iraq war a ‘strategic mistake’ – leaked Gen. Mattis audio (RT)
WNU Editor: None of the articles explain why he felt it was a strategic mistake at the time .... because with hindsight it is easy to make the claim. I can only hope that this will be one of the questions raised when he goes through the confirmation process.