Boots on Ground

The inestimable Noah Shachtman has a post up at the Danger Room, which I assume that you have all read. It’s hardly worth even linking, right? Oh, what the heck. It’s this one, where he talks about the new counterinsurgency guidance that the Army is adopting in Iraq. Read the guide here, (scroll down for the English part) and check out the Small Wars Journal while you’re at it.

This is good advice – and a lot of it goes back to the Marine Small Wars Manual. I have often been befuddled by why we have not been making more use of the lessons to be found there. The American military is unstoppable in a straight up fight, but counterinsurgency is a different ballgame. One that we have played before, with success. Max Boot’s Savage Wars of Peace is an excellent history of exactly that.

Hopefully, it is not too late. The missteps we have made have not lost us the war, by any stretch. But they have given ammunition to certain elements here in the States who do seem to be less in favor of leaving Iraq a democracy than merely leaving.