Dereliction of Duty II: Senior Military Leaders’ Loss of Integrity Wounds Afghan War Effort

Daniel L Davis. Rolling Stone, 27 January, 2012.


In my honest and very frank estimation, American Service Members are dead today – and hundreds more have had limbs blown off – as payment for the perpetuation of this myth, for we built the 2010 surge in Afghanistan on the belief that the same “fundamentals that served us so well in Iraq” could be adjusted to fit the new effort. As has now been made very clear from the foregoing, however, the “protect the population” strategy used in 2007 Iraq was never the primary causal factor leading to success as has been claimed. Instead, it was an event entirely beyond our ability to influence or control: America’s main international terrorist enemy al-Qaeda became such a heinous animal that the brutality they inflicted on our local enemy (the Iraqi national insurgency) caused the latter to turn against what ought to have been their natural ally.

By burying that truth and instead elevating the myth to the status of doctrine, we have set the conditions for our own harm in Afghanistan.

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