- Published: Tuesday, 21 August 2018 14:37
- Written by Japan In-Depth
By David Petraeus | PRISM Volume 7, No 1 | September 14, 2017
This interview was conducted by Dr. Joseph Collins and Mr. Nathan White for Lessons Encountered: Learning from the Long War, which was published by NDU Press in November 2015.
Can you tell us how your view of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan evolved during your various leadership assignments?
GEN Petraeus: When we were getting ready for what became the invasion of Iraq, the prevailing wisdom was that we were going to have a long, hard fight to Baghdad, and it was really going to be hard to take Baghdad. The road to deployment, which was a very compressed road for the 101st Airborne Division, started with a seminar on military operations in urban terrain, because that was viewed as the decisive event in the takedown of the regime in Iraq—that and finding and destroying the weapons of mass destruction.
There was the expectation of those who were presumably thinking about the Phase IV plan, after-hostilities, that the invasion would lop off the top level of the Saddamists, and then we would relatively expeditiously be able to hand off the responsibilities of governance to some new governing entity, which would exercise governance through the existing institutions of the state, albeit without the Saddamists. By Saddamists, I mean the true loyalists—this would not go down to Ba’ath party level four. It would be Saddam, level one, level two, perhaps some of the level three. But the professionals, if you will, the governing class, would largely remain in place, and there would be functioning governmental institutions that would resume their respective tasks.
By Marshall Wordsworth
Martin Scorsese’s Silence, his latest film adaptation of a novel by Japan’s celebrated author, Shusaku Endo, is an ambitious attempt to portray the fierce struggles of Jesuit priests in a mission to spread Christianity in 17th-century Japan. Andrew Garfield stars as the young Padre Sebastiao Rodrigues who faces physical and spiritual tribulations by the hostile Japanese authorities in Nagasaki as he searches for his fellow senior Portuguese missionary, Padre Cristovao Ferreira played by veteran Liam Neeson.
04 August 2016
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This year I will say and write some things that may sound outlandish. Before dismissing my words, please remember that I am very careful with information that is delivered to your table. Your time is valuable and is respected. Those who pay attention to what I write will be ahead of the game in some areas. Please remember my history:
Authored by: David W. Brown (First published on June 1, 2010 in The Atlantic)
It began with a bridge. On the morning of March 1, a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device detonated on Tarnak River Bridge near Kandahar, Afghanistan, killing multiple civilians and one American soldier. While the destruction of a single bridge might ordinarily pose a mere inconvenience to the U.S. war machine, in the oppressive terrain of Afghanistan it became a logistical chokepoint, halting ground-based operations for days.
War correspondent Michael Yon sought the answer to an uncomfortable question: who was responsible for the security of that bridge?
Yon is no ordinary reporter. A former Green Beret with U.S. Army Special Forces, he has spent more time embedded in Iraq and Afghanistan than any other journalist. His dispatches have produced some of the most memorable combat narratives of the war, and a large share of its most iconic images. Make no mistake; Michael Yon is not a dispassionate observer of the Columbia J-School variety. When writing about U.S. forces, he says "we." When writing about insurgents, he calls them terrorists or Taliban. And when reporting failures in the war effort, he names names. This has earned him both the respect and ire of senior military staff. In the case of the Tarnak River Bridge, the name most repeatedly mentioned as responsible for its security was Daniel Menard, the Canadian brigadier general in charge of Task Force Kandahar. Yon went public with this information.
2 February 2016
Written by: Free Burma Rangers
Several days ago we came from the front line across from Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS)-held Nineveh to attend the memorial of a General killed as he led his troops in repelling an ISIS suicide attack. Our team, consisting of Karen, Kachin and Karenni Free Burma Rangers (FBR) team members from Burma, our family, and foreign staff, drove under snow-covered peaks and through a beautiful gorge arriving in mid-afternoon in the snowy mountain vastness of Soran.
The memorial service lasted two and a half hours with speeches, poems, as well as Kurdish music from Kurdistan’s greatest singer, Shivon Prewar. Kurdish Generals, Members of Parliament and people from all walks of life crowded in to pay their respects to General Shawkat and the others who died with him.