Sunday, January 6, 2013

The Tale Of Two Generals And Their Impact On Two Wars And Future Wars

Photo: General McChrystal and General petraeus.

Book Review: ‘The Insurgents’ By Fred Kaplan And ‘My Share of the Task’ By Stanley A. McChrystal -- Greg Jaffe, Washington Post

Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal’s epiphany came in the summer of 2006 as he accompanied his Army Rangers on a raid into Ramadi, an Iraqi city transformed by insurgents into a sprawling car-bomb factory.

McChrystal had honed his commandos into incredibly lethal hunters. Each day, terabytes of surveillance videos, phone call intercepts and seized documents poured into his headquarters. Analysts picked through the intelligence, cross-checking it with tips from interrogators. Each night, the commandos pounced.

Read more ....

My Comment: Both Generals implemented war policies that had to assist the political desire in Washington and in the capitals of our allies to assist in 'nation building'. But has this policy of winning the 'hearts and minds' work .... sighhh .... I would have to say no. Billions spent, scores of lives lost .... and the conflicts are still ongoing. And now .... the doctrine is dead .... as the last two paragraphs of this book review reveal ....

.... The brief counterinsurgency renaissance that Petraeus and McChrystal inspired is finished. The Obama administration sealed its demise last year when it ordered the Army to stop using the doctrine in its planning for future conflicts. Meanwhile, the president has ramped up the lethal targeting machine that McChrystal built in Iraq. Today, McChrystal’s commandos are fighting an endless and secret war in far-flung locales such as Yemen, Afghanistan and Somalia.

This is the new American way of war. And McChrystal will be remembered as the general who reluctantly created it.

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