Applying Iraq to Afghanistan
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA
Pagination or Media Count:
Now that the new US strategy for prosecuting the war in Afghanistan has been determined, military leaders and media pundits are turning their attention to discussions of the best manner in which to implement and execute the strategy. As the military develops plans supporting the strategy and journalists search for stories about the plans, both will ask three questions first, what made US forces successful during the Iraq war second, do those successes provide lessons learned for Afghanistan and finally, how could US personnel translate those lessons to future military operations regardless of the culture and geography This essay is certainly not the first to investigate these three questions however, it is unique because it supports no political or military agenda regarding the war in Afghanistan. Although this essay will not provide an analysis of strategic motives, take a position on operational decision-making, nor make political comparisons between Iraq and Afghanistan it will explore the American policies that fomented transition of the Al Anbar province from what was once referred to as the wild west to what experts now call a model for stability operations. I will use process-tracing to identify relationships between US military activity and sustainable security in Anbar, present a theory explaining the correlation between US policy and provincial stability, present the general similarities at the provincial level between the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan, and extrapolate the positive lessons learned from the Anbar experience to the current US involvement in Afghanistan.
- Military Forces and Organizations