Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Prince of the Marshes: And Other Occupational Hazards of a Year in Iraq, by Rory Stewart

This excellent review by William Grimes in the New York Times captures well my thoughts on the book by Rory Stewart describing his brief but eventful time in post-invasion Iraq from 2003 to 2004. In his book, Stewart describes his experiences as Coalition Provisional Authority Deputy Governor of the Iraqi province of Maysan and Senior Advisor in the province of Dhi Qar for one year starting in August 2003.

Stewart was 30 years old. Like so many other members of the CPA, he was too young, too inexperienced, and too temporary to be effective. The whole CPA idea -- the whole post invasion cluster fuck -- was illustrative of how the United States of America under George W. Bush blundered into the greatest strategic mistake in the history of U.S. military affairs.