Two other good critiques, here by McQ at Questions and Observations,
and here at Irish Pennants, which points out that Krepinevich favors holding territory rather than hunting insurgents when “[i]n effect, the U.S. has been doing both. Fourteen of the 18 Iraqi provinces have effectively been oil-spotted; there is no insurgent activity to speak of in them. In the remaining four, the locus of action is being pushed out of the populated areas into the mostly empty desert west of Ar Ramadi.
The key to a successful oil spot strategy is to have Iraqi security forces of sufficient size and competence to be able to hold and clear areas (like Fallujah) from which insurgents (largely) have been driven. This process got off to a woefully slow start, but has been going gangbusters since LtGen. David Petreaus took over responsibility for training the ISF a year ago last Spring. But it takes time. It will be late next Spring at the earliest before sufficient numbers of trained Iraqi soldiers and cops are on hand to make an oil spot to be truly effective.”