Format Hardcover
Publication Date 04/28/08
ISBN 9781933648774
Trim Size / Pages 8.6 x 5.8 in / 256

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Washington's War

The American War of Independence to the Iraqi Insurgency

Michael Rose

Michael Rose exposes a grim reality: Iraqi insurgents have adopted the same guerrilla warfare tactics used during the American Revolution.

In June 1775, George Washington commanded a band of rebels who were, in the eyes of the British, nothing more than a collection of "vagrants, deserters and thieves." Yet he led them in a revolution against the British, which ended with an American victory. Washington succeeded in defeating the most powerful army in the world—not by engaging in conventional warfare, at which the British excelled, but by waging an insurgency campaign of ambush and indirect attacks.

In 2003, the United States invaded Iraq, and in the years that have followed, America has found itself fighting a widespread popular insurrection with an army trained for conventional warfare. Like King George and his advisers, President Bush and his cabinet misunderstood the nature of the problem facing them and underestimated its scale. Both imperial Britain and modern American failed to commit enough troops early on, nor could they resolve the dilemmas of counter-insurgency: how to wage military action and isolate the insurgents without alienating the local population. The British Army learned from its mistakes to remain a dominant world power; the Americans, by contrast, seem to be forgetting the lessons of their founding fathers.

General Sir Michael Rose commanded the 22nd Special Air Service Regiment from 1979-1982, where he was directly involved in the London Iranian Embassy siege and the Falkland Island War. From 1994-1995 he commanded the United Nations forces in Bosnia, after which he became Adjutant General of the British Army. Now retired in London, he writes and lectures on peacekeeping and leadership.

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