A sampling of e-mails:
–I read Krepinevich’s article in Foreign Affairs. We are already doing every single thing he advocates, with the exception of stabilizing key leaders (and that will probably change). Read Michael Yon’s reports about 1-24 In, read any of the pronouncements by Gen Petraeus. It is very clear to anyone who understands counterinsurgency that all of the elements that are reported and discussed individually in the news are part of a coherent strategy that combines political, military and economic development at every level from Country to the village and neighborhood and it includes efforts to “win the hearts and minds” as well as an “oil spot” strategy regardless of what an individual officer might say.
–I read it too, and I’m not impressed. I think that’s what you get for using the Networks as a source as to what is really going on in Iraq. See Jack Kelly and this, and particularly Michael Fumento at Tech Central Station–”Despite Media Blackout, Fallujah Rebuilds”. The latter article, particularly, makes it clear that, um, that’s what we’re already doing, and have been for some time.
–The Krepinevich essay seems a good example of a football spectator screaming at the coach. It seems obvious to me that our military leadership understands the on-the-ground reality and politics of Iraq much much better than Krepinevich. And the reality rule number 1 is the Arabs (and Shiites) never do anything until they’ve exhausted every last excuse. Our military is trying to communicate to the Iraqi “leaders” that THEY have a country to defend, and the sooner they start defending it, the better.
–Krepinevich is almost right. The “seize and hold” strategy is basic
counter-insurgency doctrine, but it needs to be done mostly by Iraqi
troops, not US troops. Even poorly equipped and lightly trained Iraqi
troops are better at patrolling and holding territory than the best
US troops. Fortunately, Iraqi troops are now beginning to be deployed
and to use the “seize and hold” strategy in at some areas.
Krepinevich’s article will spur that effort.