Military history

NOTES

 

Chapter 1: Things Fall Apart

3 “It was a mediocre morning”: Lance Cpl. Sharratt’s comments were made in a transcript posted by Frontline, the Public Broadcasting System’s invaluable documentary series.

4 “They didn’t even try to run away”: Sgt. Mashoot’s comment to investigators was reported in a Washington Post article that appeared 6 January 2007.

4 “The American fired”: The comments by Salem are quoted in the Washington Post, 9 May 2007.

4 “While in the house which I identified as House #2”: Lance Cpl. Tatum’s comment is contained in a signed statement given to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service on 3 April 2006, correcting a statement he had given on 19 March 2006.

4 “I heard Younis speaking”: Fahmi’s recollection is an article in the Washington Post, of 27 May 2006.

5 “‘Hey, where are the bad guys?’”: Lt. Kallop’s testimony is quoted in the Washington Post, 9 May 2007.

5 “Even though there was no investigation at the time”: Lance Cpl. Wright’s comment to investigators was quoted in the Washington Post, 7 January 2007.

6 “I thought it was very sad”: Lt. Col. Chessani’s recollection is contained in a transcript of an investigatory interview conducted on 19 March 2006.

6 “There was nothing out of the ordinary”: The comments by Col. Davis are quoted in the Washington Post, 9 May 2007.

6 “no bells and whistles went off ”: Maj. Gen. Huck’s comment is in a transcript of an investigatory interview conducted on 4 April 2006.

7 “You are not going to like this”: Lt. Gen. Chiarelli’s exchange with Gen. Huck is related in a signed statement given by Huck to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, 18 August 2006.

7 “indiscriminately”: This and subsequent quotations from Bargewell are from his eighty-eight-page report marked “15 June 2006 (Final).”

7 Underscoring Bargewell’s findings: The data cited in this paragraph are from a document titled “Mental Health Advisory Team (MHAT) IV, Operation Iraqi Freedom 05-07, FINAL REPORT, 17 November 2006, Office of the Surgeon General, Multinational Force-Iraq, and Office of the Surgeon General, United States Army Medical Command.”

8 “God damn, 15 civilians dead”: Col. Ewer’s exclamation is in a transcript of an investigatory interview conducted on 19 March 2006.

9 “There’s an undeniable sense”: Senator McCain’s comment was made in a speech at the American Enterprise Institute, 10 November 2005.

10 “It sucks”: Spec. Ivey was quoted in the Washington Post, 27 July 2006.

10 “corrupt, . . . tied to being involved in extra-judicial killings”: Maj. Williams’s comment is in an interview conducted by the Army’s Combat Studies Institute at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, for its studies of “Operational Leadership Experiences.”

10 “The truth is that many commands”: Capt. Martin’s assertion is made in his article “Tempo, Technology and Hubris,” Marine Corps Gazette, May 2007.

11 “I’d never seen it at this level before”: Maj. Mendelson’s observation is in his interview for the Leavenworth series “Operational Leadership Experiences.”

12 “By and large, the battalions continued to do what they knew best”: West’s comment is in his book The Strongest Tribe (Random House, 2008).

13 “The costs of failure are likely to be high”: This appears in “The War in Iraq: An Interim Assessment,” by Andrew Krepinevich, prepared for OSD/Net Assessment, November 2005.

14 “Haziness about ends and means”: Cohen’s comment is in “No Way to Win a War,” the Wall Street Journal, 7 December 2006.

15 the United States needs a real strategy: Krepinevich’s article “How to Win in Iraq” appeared in the September/October 2005 edition of Foreign Affairs.

16 “To be effective, the so-called pacification program”: Kissinger’s article was “The Viet Nam Negotiations,” Foreign Affairs, January 1969.

19 “to be a good average is safer”: Lloyd George’s comment is quoted in The Rules of the Game: Jutland and British Naval Command, by Andrew Gordon (John Murray, 1996).

22 “a combination of being the president and the pope”: This Petraeus comment appeared in the Washington Post, 16 May 2003.

22 “If others found him hard to love”: Rick Atkinson’s comment is in his book In the Company of Soldiers (Henry Holt, 2004), as is Gen. Freakley’s comment about Atkinson being “probably closer to him.”

Chapter 2: How to Fight This War

25 “cultural insensitivity”: Brig. Aylwin-Foster’s article, titled “Changing the Army for Counterinsurgency Operations,” was carried in Military Review, November-December 2005.

26 “The population . . . becomes the objective”: This appears in Galula’s seminal work, Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and Practice (Praeger, 1964).

27 “paradoxes of counterinsurgency”: This and the subsequent series of quotations are from “Principles, Imperatives and Paradoxes of Counterinsurgency,” Military Review, March-April 2006.

27 playing with paradox: This aspect of Abbasid literature is discussed by Hugh Kennedy in When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World: The Rise and Fall of Islam’s Greatest Dynasty (Da Capo, 2004).

28 “In counterinsurgency, killing the enemy is easy”: Several months after Petraeus read Kilcullen’s essay, which circulated first by e-mail, it was carried in Military Review, May-June 2006.

29 “An operation that kills five insurgents is counterproductive”: The manual was published as FM 3-24: Counterinsurgency, Headquarters, Department of the Army, December 2006.

31 “We needed elections”: This is in the essay by Gen. Fastabend titled “How This All Ends: It’s fourth and long, go deep,” unpublished document given to Gen. Petraeus, late April 2007.

31 the leading Shiite party, the United Iraqi Alliance, won 70 of 81 seats: The data in this paragraph is from “Iraq’s Year of Voting Dangerously,” by A. I. Dawisha and Larry Diamond, Journal of Democracy, April 2006.

32 “we heard an explosion”: From Maj. Lewis’s interview for Leavenworth’s “Operational Leadership Experiences” archives.

33 violence had increased at a steady pace since March 2005: This is from the Pentagon’s report to Congress “Measuring Security and Stability in Iraq,” December 2007.

33 “The situation in the last six months”: Kubasi was quoted in the Washington Post, 23 January 2006.

34 “We have become reactive”: This is from Capt. Martin’s article “Tempo, Technology and Hubris,” Marine Corps Gazette, May 2007.

37 “Every time you left the gate”: From Maj. Williamson’s interview, “Operational Leadership Experiences,” Fort Leavenworth.

41 “We live in darkness”: Jasim was quoted in the Washington Post, of 29 May 2006.

46 “rose considerably”: Capt. Comstock’s study “The Battle for Saydia: An Ongoing Case Study in Militia Based Insurgency” was carried on the website Small Wars Journal, April 2008.

46 “JAM/Shia militia group kidnaps a Sunni male”: Capt. Haas was quoted in Comstock’s study, see previous note.

46 “People are killed here every day”: Capt. Showman’s observation is in the Washington Post, of 27 October 2007.

47 “Leave, join or die”: Capt. Francis is quoted in Comstock’s study cited earlier in this chapter.

47 “I don’t think this place”: Sgt. Alarcon is quoted in same Washington Post article of 27 October 2007 that quoted Showman earlier in this chapter.

47 “When we got there, it was mixed Sunni and Shia”: Maj. Gilmore’s interview, “Operational Leadership Experiences,” Fort Leavenworth.

47 “The social and political situation”: Col. Devlin’s analysis “State of the Insurgency in al Anbar,” 17 August 2006, bears his title (“II MEF G-2”) but not his name.

48 “Using a small, localized cell”: Capt. Few’s study “The Break Point: AQIZ Establishes the ISI in Zaganiyah” was carried on the website Small Wars Journal, also in April 2008.

50 “They ordered these Kurdish units”: From Maj. Matt Whitney’s interview, “Operational Leadership Experiences.”

51 “kiss of death”: Kilcullen’s comment was made in a briefing titled “Counterinsurgency in Iraq: Theory and Practice, 2007.”

54 “deeply flawed in timing and resources”: Cordesman’s comment appears in his essay “Iraqi Force Development,” distributed 27 November 2006.

54 “The strategy was a hope”: From West’s book Strongest Tribe, (Random House, 2008). 57 “You’d find dumped bodies”: From Maj. Voorhies’s interview “Operational Leadership Experiences.”

57 “We may need more resources”: West and Cohen, “Our Only Hope,” Wall Street Journal, 8 January 2007.

58 “We had two bites of this apple”: Most of the quotations from Gen. Keane in this book are from the hours of interviews I did with him, but this one is from the transcript of an interview he did with Frontline.

59 “I don’t believe we can continue”: Senator Snowe was quoted in the Washington Post, 20 October 2006.

59 A light in Ramadi: Much of this section is based on an interview with Col. MacFarland, as well as follow-up exchanges by e-mail, but a few of the quotations from him are from his official interview with the Contemporary Operations Study Team at the Army’s Combat Studies Institute, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

62 “It was actually a very small number”: Lt. Col. Negard was quoted in the Washington Post, 2 May 2006.

62 But Carter Malkasian: His observation is in his article “A Thin Blue Line in the Sand,” DemocracyJournal. org, Summer 2007.

63 “Today, there is no tribal sheikh”: Qadir, as quoted in the Washington Post, 20 May 2006.

67 “For all intents and purposes”: Malkasian, “Thin Blue Line,” quoted earlier in this chapter.

70 “Part of me died along”: Gibbs’s mother, Debbie Halstead, was quoted in the Winston-Salem Journal, 9 December 2006.

70 “He was one of those people”: Ivan Ryndych’s comment appeared in Newsday, 8 December 2006.

70 “Please don’t portray this as a tragedy”: Re McClung was quoted in the Los Angeles Times, 13 December 2006.

71 “Well, Grant, we’ve had the devil’s own day”: This anecdote, which appears in many histories of the Civil War, was originally told to by Gen. Sherman to a reporter for the Washington Post and then quoted in the Army and Navy Journal, 30 December 1893, according to Jean Edward Smith’s Grant (Simon & Schuster, 2001).

72 “Sean had obviously done something extraordinarily important”: The data in this paragraph, and earlier in this chapter, about the cooperation of Ramadi-area tribes is from a briefing, “Tribal Cooperation Jan 07,” that was given to Petraeus when he visited Ramadi in February 2007.

Chapter 3: Keane Takes Command

75 “one of the nastiest campaigns”: This appears in Sen. Webb’s book A Time to Fight (Broadway, 2008).

76 “How’s your boy?”: The exchange between President Bush and Webb is based partly on an interview with Webb but mainly on an accounts in the Washington Post, 29 November 2006, and an article in The Washingtonian, February 2008.

91 “We don’t easily jump”: Martin’s comment is in his interview with the Contemporary Operations Studies Team, Combat Studies Institute, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

92 “It’s important to trust the judgment of the military”: President Bush’s interview with the Washington Post was quoted in the newspaper on 20 December 2006.

93 “I am not persuaded”: Powell appeared on Face the Nation, 17 December 2006.

94 “Without additional combat forces”: Senator McCain’s comment was quoted in the Washington Post, 17 November 2006.

98 President Bush hit a new low in his ratings: The data here is from the Washington Post-ABC News Poll, posted by the Post, 12 December 2006.

99 “there was not enough civilian participation”: From Kinnard’s The War Managers: American Generals Reflect on Vietnam (Da Capo, 1991).

103 “We are losing”: The conclusions of the “council of colonels” are summarized in the briefing “Strategy for the Long War, 2006-2016: ‘Where we are going,’ 27 October 2006.”

Chapter 4: A Strategy Is Born

121 “Producing Victory”: Lt. Col. Ollivant’s article appeared in the July-August 2006 issue of Military Review.

Chapter 5: If You’re So Smart . . .

139 “sense of reality”: Ambassador Carney’s comment appeared in the Washington Post, 14 January 2007.

Chapter 6: Gambling on a “Shitty Hand”

155 “We redefined success”: Sky said this first to me in an interview about her work in the winter of 2006-7, then repeated it in her essay “Iraq 2007—Moving Beyond Counter-Insurgency Doctrine: A First-Hand Perspective,” published by the Royal United Services Institute, London, April 2008.

156 “to settle for far less”: Fastabend’s essay “How This All Ends: It’s Fourth and Long, Go Deep,” unpublished document given to Gen. Petraeus, late April 2007.

160 “rapid decisive operations”: For example, see “A Concept for Rapid Decisive Operations,” by the J-9 Joint Futures Lab, Joint Forces Command, August 2001.

160 “dominant maneuver, precision engagement and information operations”: The study done at the School of Advanced Military Studies is “To Fight and Win America’s Wars . . . and Then What?: A critical analysis of rapid decisive operations in a post-Saddam Iraq,” by Army Lt. Col. John Metz, May 2003.

161 “We need rapidly deployable”: Secretary Rumsfeld’s comments were made in a speech at the National Defense University, Washington, D.C., 31 January 2002.

161 “Our mindset was not to kill”: Lt. Burns’s discussion appeared in his article on “Iraq and the Young Maneuver Leader,” Armor magazine, July-August 2008.

163 “reaching terminal velocity”: Maj. Gillespie’s quotation is in his “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview with the Combat Studies Institute at Fort Leavenworth.

163 “We refer not so much to the single outstandingly significant report”: Clausewitz’s insight on intelligence is made in his discussion of “The People,” book 6, chapter 6, of On War.

166 “Get out of your Humvees”: This is from Maj. Halloran’s interview with the Combat Studies Institute at Fort Leavenworth.

166 an average of more than one car bomb attack a day: The data in this paragraph on bombings and downings of helicopters was carried in “Iraq’s Sectarian and Ethnic Violence and Its Evolving Insurgency,” by Anthony Cordesman, with the assistance of Emma Davies, Center for Strategic and International Studies, 3 April 2007.

166 “It’s getting worse”: Partlow’s article ran in the Washington Post, 6 February 2007.

166 “When we first moved into the AO”: The operations officer is quoted in the report of the “Theater Operations Detachment” for the Center for Army Lessons Learned at Fort Leavenworth,” 13 January 2008.

167 “Our first two weeks”: Lt. Carlisle’s recollection is in the same CALL report.

167 “My platoon sergeant came to Iraq”: Lt. Williamson’s comment was made on the Army website Platoon Leader.

167 “We did not know”: Lt. Col. Crider’s quotations are from “Operation Close Encounters,” an unpublished essay that circulated by e-mail.

167 “constant enemy small-arms fire”: Lt. Gross’s comments are from the website Platoon Leader.

167 “We don’t need any more information”: Capt. Keirsey recounted his bluff in “Reflections of a Counterinsurgency Company Commander,” which appeared first on the Army website Company Commander and was reprinted in the June and July 2008 issues of Army magazine. Keirsey also was interviewed in the CALL report.

171 “qualified optimist” and “hardest that I have ever experienced”: Except for this paragraph, and for the first paragraph in chapter 10, the quotations from Gen. Petraeus in this book are from interviews I did with him or from documents. In this paragraph, “qualified optimist” was a comment he made in an interview on Charlie Rose, 26 April 2007. The other quotation appeared in the Times of London, 21 February 2008, in an online posting of the transcript of an interview by Deborah Hayes.

171 “I never thought I was going to see”: Staff Sgt. Nunez’s quotation appeared in Stars & Stripes, 24 April 2008.

173 “dividing neighbor from neighbor”: Professor Niva made this assertion in “The New Walls of Baghdad,” Foreign Policy in Focus Report, 21 April 2008.

174 “The insurgency is like a shark”: This appears in “13 Bullets on the Insurgency in Anbar,” issued by the Marine intelligence staff in Iraq in March 2008.

174 “The Defense of Jisr al-Doreaa”: This was carried on the Small Wars Journal website in June 2008. I am told it will be published as a book by the University of Chicago Press.

176 “First people weren’t working with us”: Lt. Col. Michael is quoted in the CALL report.

176 “When we first came over”: Col. Grigsby made this comment during a briefing with reporters at the Pentagon, 13 December 2007.

178 “hopeless”: Lt. Freeze’s memoir, “Notes from Down Range,” was carried on the Army website Platoon Leader.

180 “They were carrying bodies”: The Iraqi’s comment appeared in the Washington Post, 4 February 2007.

180 “These guys are real smart”: Lt. Von Plinsky was quoted in the Washington Post, 22 April 2007.

181 “the insurgents assassinated him”: Spec. Hollopeter was quoted in Stars & Stripes, 19 June 2007.

181 The battle of Tarmiyah: Most of this section is based on interviews with soldiers involved in this action and with documents provided by their commanders. I first learned of this fight from an account by Greg Jaffe that appeared in the Wall Street Journal on 3 May 2007. Among the documents I used were “Memorandum for Commander, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division / Subject: 15-6 Investigation Concerning the Suicide Vehicle Borne Improvised (SBVIED) attack on the Tarmiyah Combat Outpost,” by Lt. Col. Scott Efflandt, 2 March 2007; “Patrol Base Tarmiyah: Critical Event Lessons Learned,” undated PowerPoint briefing; “Demon Co. Update,” 1st Sgt. William Tramel, 25 February 2007; “The Battle for AO North,” a history of the operations in Iraq in 2006-7 of the 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment.

181 “The explosion threw me”: Lt. Jokinen’s memory is in “Sworn Statement of 1LT Jokinen, Shawn R, 19 Feb 07.”

182 “Everything was black”: Staff Sgt. Copeland’s recollection is from “Sworn statement of the events of 19 Feb 2007, Tarmiyah, Iraq, D C 2-8 Cav, Statement of SSG Copeland.”

185 “The very fundamental issue”: Gen. Sheehan’s criticism appeared in the Washington Post, 11 April 2007.

185 “It flat out sucks”: Pvt. Perkins’s complaint was quoted in the Washington Post, 13 April 2007.

185 “I believe myself . . . that this war is lost”: Senator Reid’s assessment was quoted in the Washington Post, 20 April 2007.

186 “a brief exchange of fire”: That characterization appeared in Stars & Stripes, 1 September 2008, as did the quotations from the testimony of Pfc. Hartson and of Sgt. Leahy.

188 “admit defeat”: Gen. Rose’s conclusion was reported in the London Daily Telegraph, 4 May 2007.

188 “The war in Iraq is approaching”: Kissinger’s warning was offered in an opinion article that ran in the Washington Post, 10 July 2007.

188 “Today, the wind—by grace of Allah”: Al Qaeda’s boast was quoted in the U.S. government’s digest of Jihadist Websites on OpenSource.gov, 5 July 2007.

188 “We’re tired of being lost”: Sgt. 1st Class Eaglin’s gloomy comment appeared in the Washington Post, 8 May 2007.

189 “I don’t see any progress”: Spec. Tertulien’s comment was quoted in the Los Angeles Times, 25 August 2007.

189 “We passed the top half of a HMMWV”: Lt. Weber’s recollection is in his untitled interview on the Army’s Platoon Leader website.

189 “I can’t take it anymore”: This suicide is recounted in a remarkable series of articles that appeared in Army Times in December 2007.

189 “We see that a vast majority”: The opinion piece by the seven soldiers from the 82nd Airborne (Spec. Buddhika Jaymaha, Sgt. Wesley Smith, Sgt. Jeremy Roebuck, Sgt. Omar Mara, Sgt. Edward Sandmeier, Staff Sgt. Yance Gray, and Staff Sgt. Jeremy Murphy) appeared in the New York Times, 19 August 2007.

190 “cautious, very cautious, optimism”: Senator McCain’s assessment and Senator Graham’s assertion about “We’re doing now what we should have done three years ago” were offered at the Combined Press Information Center, Baghdad, 1 April 2007.

191 “He rolled over on the supplier”: Maj. Allen’s comment is in his interview in the Fort Leavenworth’s Operational Leadership series.

191 “They feel as long as the Americans are there”: Sgt. Maj. Clemens’s comment is in his interview with the Operational Leadership series.

192 “The quality of life in Jisr Diuala”: Grigsby’s comment was made in a briefing with Pentagon reporters, 14 May 2008.

193 “synchronization of ISR/HUMINT/SIGINT”: This is from “Ironhorse OIF 06-08,” an undated operations report by the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.

195 “by not emphasizing population protection”: Maj. Gen. Stone’s analysis was offered in his undated memorandum “Task Force 134: From Strategic Risk to Strategic Advantage.” The survey data in this and the following paragraph are from an untitled Task Force 134 PowerPoint briefing on the demographics and views of the detainee population.

197 “Of the twenty-seven hundred Iraqi security forces”: Lt. Col. Miska was quoted in the Washington Post, 4 September 2007.

Chapter 7: Signs of Life in Baghdad

200 “Now that the Sunnis are all gone”: Capt. Wink was quoted in the Washington Post, 16 July 2007.

202 “Use minimum force”: Lt. Coppock’s “Counterinsurgency Cliff Notes: Techniques for the Conventional Rifle Platoon, in Layman’s Terms” was posted on the Small Wars Journal website in April 2008.

206 “It’s like raising a crocodile”: Al-Muttalibi’s simile appeared in the Washington Times, 23 July 2007.

206 “those terrorist elements”: The United Iraqi Alliance’s statement was quoted in the Washington Post, 3 October 2007.

206 “a coalition of gangsters, tribal leaders and opportunists”: Professor Porter’s characterization was posted on the “Kings of War” blog, 16 July 2008.

207 “If Jack Bauer doesn’t negotiate with terrorists”: Spec. Horton posed this question on his blog, “Army of Dude,” 24 July 2007.

207 “We’re going after al Qaeda”: Lt. Col. Kuehl recounted this statement by an Iraqi fighter in the Washington Post, 9 June 2007.

207 “These guys looked like a military unit”: Capt. Wilbraham’s comment is in the same Post article cited above.

209 “Iraq obeys only force”: Col. al-Zobaie’s assertions were quoted in the Washington Post, 24 March 2008.

210 “There were almost 600 fighters in our sector”: The diary entries were quoted in the Washington Post, 10 February 2008. Some additional quotes are from documents released the same day by the U.S. military in Iraq under the title “Daily Diary of al Qaeda Sector Leader Called Abu Tariq.”

210 The insurgent who loved Titanic: Most of the information in this section came from interviews conducted by e-mail with Capt. Cook, but it also relies on his written “Patrol Debriefs” and some other material.

213 “You know that your jihad”: This and subsequent quotations from Col. Ismael and Sarhan are from a transcript of a recording of their meeting in January 2008.

215 “knew where the [arms] caches were”: Capt. Galvach was quoted in the Washington Post, 9 August 2007.

215 “one more step toward the fragmentation”: Malkasian expresses this concern in his article “A Thin Blue Line in the Sand,” DemocracyJournal.org, Summer 2007.

216 “embraced auxiliary tribalism”: Long’s observation is in “The Anbar Awakening,” Survival magazine, April 2008.

216 “several ministries are so controlled”: The untitled study, written in September 2007 by the staff of the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, to my knowledge has never been released.

217 “We did not fail”: Col. Gentile’s article, “Our troops did not fail in 2006,” was carried in the International Herald Tribune, 24 January 2008.

219 “Just let them drive through”: This is quoted in the report of the “Theater Operations Detachment” for the Center for Army Lessons Learned at Fort Leavenworth,” 13 January 2008.

219 “a potential disaster”: Capt. Press’s comment is in his article “After Action Report: Working with the Awakening in Central Anbar,” CTC Sentinel, September 2008, published by the Combating Terrorism Center, U.S. Military Academy, West Point, N.Y.

224 “The tribal strategy”: Long’s comments are in “The Anbar Awakening,” Survival magazine, April 2008.

225 “fragmenting at a remarkable rate”: Professor Lynch made this comment on his website, AbuAardvaark.typepad.com.

Chapter 8: The Domestic Opposition Collapses

232 Barbero, who had been thinking about the Middle East: Barbero’s monograph, titled “Iran-Iraq War of Exhaustion: The result of the paradoxical trinity,” was published by the School of Advanced Military Studies, Fort Leavenworth, 15 May 1989.

240 “By the end of 2007, less sophisticated forms of IEDs”: The report by Catherine Dale of the Congressional Research Service is “Operation Iraqi Freedom: Strategies, Approaches, Results, and Issues for Congress,” 22 February 2008.

241 “The surge hammered us at first”: The soldier’s quote, subsequent quotes from other soldiers, and the data here are all from “Mental Health Advisory Team (MHAT) V/Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08: Iraq/Operation Enduring Freedom 8: Afghanistan,” 14 February 2008, Office of the Surgon, Multi-National Force-Iraq, and Office of the Command Surgeon—[deleted], and Office of the Surgeon General, United States Army Medical Command.

242 “the systematic misuse of official institutions”: The study by the International Crisis Group is “Where Is Iraq Heading? Lessons from Basra,” 25 June 2007.

244 “the handwriting is on the wall”: Senator McConnell’s comment appeared in the Washington Post, 27 May 2007.

244 “By the time we get to September”: Representative Boehner’s prediction was made on Fox News Sunday, 6 May 2007, and quoted the following day in the Washington Post.

245 “Many of us had hoped this summer”: This is from Gen. Petraeus’s letter to the troops, issued 7 September 2007.

249 Between June and December: The data in this paragraph are from a briefing I attended at Camp Liberty, Iraq, on 31 January 2008, and from accompanying slides titled “MND-B Operations & Intelligence Briefing.”

254 The best evidence for that new hands-off attitude: The data on television news coverage of the war in this paragraph appear in “Iraq war disappears as TV story,” by David Bauder, the Miami Herald, 17 March 2008.

254 “It seems like a bad dream”: George’s comment was quoted in the American Journalism Review, April/May 2008.

Chapter 9: The Twilight Zone

259 “progress”: Lt. Freeze’s comment is from his online memoir, “Notes from Down Range,” carried on the Army website Platoon Leader.

261 “I don’t think there is something”: Salih’s comment appeared in the Washington Post, 10 August 2007.

263 “The longer the Iraqi government”: White’s comment appeared in the Pocono Record, 4 May 2008.

263 “a good guy”: This is quoted in the report of the “Theater Operations Detachment” for the Center for Army Lessons Learned at Fort Leavenworth,” 13 January 2008.

265 “They are like mercenaries”: The Associated Press report was carried by the wire service on 29 June 2008.

265 “Despite the repeated assurances”: Professor Hanna’s article ran on the website of World Politics Review, 10 July 2008.

266 “Oh people of Iraq”: Guardian, 10 November 2007.

266 “Many times he had”: Capt. Cosper was quoted in the Los Angeles Times, 29 June 2008.

266 “they’ve grown into a much more organized”: This is from Horton’s blog, “Army of Dude,” 24 July 2007.

267 “deeply troubled”: Moore’s article ran in the New York Times, 23 February 2008.

269 “Our mission is to protect”: Starr was quoted in the Washington Post, 20 September 2007.

269 “The Iraqis despised them”: Degn was quoted in the same Washington Post, article above.

270 “It had every indication”: Lt. Col. Tarsa’s observation is in the Washington Post, 12 October 2007, as is Capt. Cherry’s comment that, “This was uncalled for.”

Chapter 10: Big Wasta

This chapter relies in part on “The Battle for Basra,” by Marisa Cochrane, Institute for the Study of War, 23 June 2008.

273 “You know, we all feel much older”: Petraeus said this on CNN, 19 March 2008.

274 “brazenly challenging”: Barnett’s article, in the April 2008 issue of Esquire, was titled “The Man Between War and Peace.”

275 “General Odierno has experienced”: Herrington was quoted in the Washington Post, 16 February 2008.

277 “By late 2007, the British position”: Cordesman’s comment is in his study “Iraqi Force Development 2008,” published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, D.C.

277 “I’m not going to go into details”: Marston’s comments on the frustration of British officers were made at a symposium on counterinsurgency at the National Press Club, Washington, D.C., 22 July 2008.

287 “Nothing succeeds with the American public like success”: Petraeus’s dissertation is titled “The American military and the lessons of Vietnam: A study of military influence and the use of force in the post-Vietnam era” (Princeton University, 1987).

290 “Iraq is a badge of honor”: This quote appeared in the Washington Post, 12 June 2006.

Chapter 11: After the Surge

297 “As Nouri al-Maliki has become more capable”: Kahl’s comment was made in a press briefing on Iraq given by the Center for New American Security, 13 August 2008.

297 “a totalitarian regime”: Barzani’s comment appeared in “Kurd-Arab Tensions May Threaten Iraq Calm,” Reuters, 13 November 2008.

297 “the land the surge forgot”: This is the title of a report by Michael Knights issued by the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 30 October 2008.

297 “the war waiting”: McCaffrey’s assertion is in an After Action Report on his visit to Iraq and Kuwait in October and November 2008.

297 provoking the Kurds’ Barzani to issue an ultimatum: In an interview with Ashard Alawsat, available at http://www.asharq-e.com, 3 September 2008, Barzani stated that “never, we will not relinquish Kirkuk whatever the circumstances are.”

297 “The Iraqi army’s campaign in Diyala”: Hilterman’s analysis appeared on the website Abu Aardvark under the title “Kurds See the Future and Don’t Like It,” 1 September 2008.

298 “The surge may have bought transitory successes”: Simon’s analysis is in “The Price of the Surge: How U.S. Strategy Is Hastening Iraq’s Demise,” Foreign Affairs, May/June 2008.

299 “rubber-stamping”: Obama made his remarks to Terry Moran of ABC’s Nightline, 21 July 2008.

304 Some 50,000 soldiers now have prescriptions: This was reported by Gregg Zoroya in USA Today, 21 October 2008, as was the information about the 509th Engineer Company.

304 The quality of recruits: The information in this paragraph about recruiting problems is from an article by Josh White in the Washington Post, 23 January 2008.

305 The military also has been admitting more recruits with criminal records: This and the other data in this paragraph about conduct waivers are from an article by Ann Scott Tyson that ran in the Washington Post, 22 April 2008.

305 “incredible stress”: This and the other statements by Gen. Cody appeared in an article by Tyson in the Washington Post, 2 April 2008.

Chapter 12: Obama’s War

307 “We’re not looking at doing things fast”: Col. Johnson’s comment was made during a Pentagon roundtable with defense bloggers, 12 August 2008.

307 “The Vietnam War had drawn to a close when I was fairly young”: Sen. Obama made this observation on the CNN television show Fareed Zakaria GPS, 13 July 2008. During that same interview he also made the comments about not abandoning Iraq that are quoted at the end of this paragraph.

309 “My 16-month time line, if you examine everything I’ve said”: Obama’s statement was reported widely, including in the Washington Post, 4 July 2008.

310 “a unified democratic country or to a fractured sectarian one”: Janabi’s analysis, “The Importance of Iraq’s Provincial Elections,” was published by the Washington Institute for Near East Policy on 26 September 2008.

311 “One particularly ominous aspect of Anbari politics”: Lt. Cdr. Lindsay’s observation in his essay “Does the ‘Surge’ Explain Iraq’s Improved Security?,” carried in the MIT Center for International Studies’ “Audit of the Conventional Wisdom,” September 2008.

Epilogue: The Long War

314 On the phrase Wolfowitz used, see for example my book Fiasco, p. 98, where he is quoted as saying, “it is hard to conceive that it would take more forces to provide stability in post-Saddam Iraq than it would take to conduct the war itself and to secure the surrender of Saddam’s security forces and his army—hard to imagine.”

314 See, for example, Klein’s discussion of the failures of imagination by both sides in the 1973 downing of a Libyan airliner by Israeli fighter jets, in chapter 5 of Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions (Boston: MIT Press, 2001).

315 “History provides countless warnings”: Cordesman’s observation in his essay “Grand Strategy and Iraq’s Uncertain Future,” published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies, 31 October 2008.

315 “there has never been a successful counterinsurgency that took less than 10 years”: Kilcullen said this on the Charlie Rose television show, 5 October 2007.

316 “This mission will be long”: Biddle’s estimate is in his article “Patient Stabilized?,” National Interest, March-April 2008.

317 “only a decades-long American occupation”: Col. Gentile’s prediction is in “A (Slightly) Better War: A Narrative and Its Defects,” World Affairs, Summer 2008.

317 “power sharing is always a prelude to violence”: McCreary’s analysis appeared in his NightWatch e-mail report of 11 September 2008.

318 “If the Americans leave”: Staff Sgt. Benavides was quoted in an article by Sam Dagher in the Christian Science Monitor, 3 July 2008.

318 “a colossus with feet of clay”: Visser’s description is in his essay “The Sadrists of Basra and the Far South of Iraq,” published by the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, May 2008.

319 “the Sadrists are Tehran’s historical main enemy”: Visser noted this in “The Sadrists, the Bush Administration’s Narrative on Iraq, and the Maysan Operations,” posted on www.historiae.orgon 3 July 2008.

320 “it is our friends who will come to power”: Khatami said this to Nasr, who included it in a draft of a study on “The Implications of Military Confrontation with Iran” and permitted me to quote it here.

322 “The Iraqi army is a predominantly Shia institution”: This is from the same “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview with Sgt. Maj. Clemens that is quoted in Chapter 6.

323 “watching The Sopranos or watching The Godfather”: This is from the “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview with Maj. Voorhies cited in Chapter 2.

323 “they wanted to go back to the old way underneath Saddam”: Maj. Arnold stated this in his official “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview, Combat Studies Institute, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 16 January 2008.

323 “Saddam Hussein taught them how to do that”: This is from Maj. Whitney’s “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview, quoted in Chapter 2.

323 “They’re going to be ruthless”: Maj. Burr’s prediction appears in his official “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview, Combat Studies Institute, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 13 April 2007.

324 “the whole notion of democracy and representative government in Iraq was absolutely ludicrous”: Maj. Quayle states this in his official “Operational Leadership Experiences” interview, Combat Studies Institute, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 19 September 2008.

324 the story of a Turkmen Shia police chief: Capt. Gorkowski recounted this episode in “After Action Report: Assessing Acceptable Corruption in Iraq,” CTC Sentinel, published by the Combating Terrorism Center, U.S. Military Academy, West Point, N.Y., August 2008.

325 “America will have bequeathed a highly unstable state”: Dodge’s warning is in “Iraq and the Next American President,” Survival, October-November 2008.

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