I don’t know about you, but my reading habits are terrible. I tend to prefer “action fiction” or a good detective story. I know better!
We don’t make a habit of advertising books on our blogs. We do make exceptions like Ruth Fruehauf’s “Singing Wheels”
Well, one has come along that is a “must read”.
Bolger, the author of “Why We Lost,” salutes the troops for their bravery and sacrifice but places the blame squarely on people in the higher ranks, like himself.
“The men and women I fought beside did a great job, but I know I let them down by not giving them rational missions that they could carry out,” he said.
Now, with the rise of the Islamic State, there’s a growing choir urging the U.S. military to lead yet another ground war in Iraq.
“That would be four times biting that poison apple: Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq and then Iraq again,” he said.
“We have to let the Iraqis do it, realize they are not going to do it our way and understand that we will have an imperfect outcome,” he said.
In September, President Barack Obama ordered America’s armed forces to begin a series of airstrikes against IS targets in Iraq and Syria and assured the public that “these terrorists can’t find safe haven anywhere.”
Bolger notes that it is difficult to bomb IS because it doesn’t exactly have a panzer division. And its members flee into civilian areas when the West applies pressure.
“You need ground troops, but Iraqi ground troops backed by our advisers and trainers,” he said.
To Bolger, IS is just the latest version of the same Sunni jihadis he had been fighting. In some cases, they are literally the same people.
On Veterans Day, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel gave a speech at the Vietnam War Memorial urging Americans to honor those who served but to question the policies that send them off to fight.
“There is nothing to be gained by glossing over the darker portions of a war that bitterly divided America,” Hagel said that day. “We must openly acknowledge past mistakes, and learn from them, because that is how we avoid repeating them.”