The punch paragraphs of the review:
Petraeus had brought together leading civilian and military thinkers to produce a new version of the Army’s counterinsurgency manual. The document’s central theme was political rather than military: A counterinsurgency can succeed only if it makes the government legitimate in the eyes of its citizens. This requires economic aid, governance reform, improvement in basic services and the like. And it requires an act of understanding, even empathy: “Knowing why an insurgent movement has gained support,” the manual states, “is essential in designing a counterinsurgency campaign.”
Petraeus proceeded to implement his strategy with relentless focus (and those 30,000 extra troops). A correct strategy forcefully executed will take you a long way — but not all the way. As we know now, Petraeus’s arrival in Iraq coincided with the fateful decision of Sunni tribal sheiks to stand up to the extremists of Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, who had worn out their welcome by, for example, throwing acid in the faces of women deemed insufficiently veiled. Thanks to the “Anbar Awakening,” as it was called, 100,000 Sunni men joined the fight against extremism. The fallback position among Democrats, which Joe Biden articulated last month on “Meet The Press,” is that it wasn’t the surge that worked, but the Awakening.
Robinson makes it clear that this simply isn’t so. She describes in exacting detail the tactics used by field officers in some of the most terrifying battlegrounds of Iraq. When the First Battalion, Fifth Cavalry Regiment of the First Cavalry Division was assigned in late 2006 to Ameriya, in western Baghdad, the commander, Lt. Col. Dale Kuehl, moved his headquarters out of the base camp and into a local police station. He and his staff officers had read up on “battalion-led counterinsurgency,” and were eager to put its precepts into effect. Kuehl began building contacts with local sheiks, and spreading money around by paying for trash pickup and road repair. Then he began “clearing” operations against insurgents. The cost was high: 14 deaths in May alone.
Robinson lingers on the heroic self- discipline of officers who denied their men the catharsis of revenge, knowing that they were fighting for the sympathies of civilians. And finally, that discipline paid off. In late May, a local sheik called Kuehl to say that his tribesmen would be going after an Al Qaeda cell. When the sheik called back in a panic to ask for help, Kuehl joined the fight. His men weren’t sure which Iraqis to shoot at, but the battle went well, and later Kuehl reached an understanding with the commander of the tribal force: he promised to pay the Sunnis, many of them former insurgents, if they submitted to fingerprinting and agreed to work with the Iraqi Army. When Petraeus learned of the deal, his only advice was, “Do not let our Army stop you,” and “Do not let the Iraqi government stop you.” [my emphasis above]
To see certifiable brain farts from Obama and Biden on this issue go unchallenged by the MSM and to listen to a total fraud like Dingy Harry Reid say "The war is lost" reminds me of the total betrayal of the American Elites of the US Armed Forces.
American is not filled with EUnuchs and political payback will be dear.
A new Reagan is out there somewhere slouching toward Washington to be inaugurated.