Another diversion, Iraq this time
A few months ago I started exercising with a personnal trainer. At my age, I need all the help I can get. Mike is a lawyer and Marine officer. While in Iraq he was part of a pay-back system to compensate innocent Iraqui civilians for losses incurred by “friendly fire”. (the loss of a goat for example.) Mike and a sargent with money set up shop and a croud of Iraquis would come to get their due. I suggesed to Mike that they must have been a jucy target for some nasties with mortars. Mike replied that the nasties never could figure out mortars but once a female suicide bomber was aprehended on the periphery before she could do much dammage.
I just finished a fascinating book: The Fourth Star by David Cloud and Greg Jaffe about four generals - George Casey, John Abizaid, Peter Chiarelli and David Patraeus - who slowly and painfully changed the army culture from conventional warfare, fighting the Russians on the plains of Germany, to counterinsurgency and nation building. Politicians and the civilian populace will have to embrace the same change. Mike’s job was an example. He is moving on to Colorado, his home, where he will be a federal prosecutor. We will all miss him.