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Military historians are reading On Point II: Transition to the New Campaign, which has just been released by the U.S. Army. Continuing the theme from my last post, here's the Foreword:

This is the story of the American Army and its Soldiers during a critical period of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM—the 18 months following the topping of the Saddam Hussein regime in April 2003. On Point II: Transition to the New Campaign provides a contemporary historical account of the United States Army in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM from May 2003 through the Iraqi elections of January 2005. As its title indicates, the book depicts the transition of the Army from conventional combat to full spectrum operations in support of building a new, free Iraq.

One of the great, and least understood, qualities of the United States Army is its culture of introspection and self-examination. American Soldiers, whether it is the squad leader conducting a hasty after action review of a training event or the senior leader studying great campaigns from the past, are part of a vibrant, learning organization. The CSI motto—The Past is Prologue—neatly captures the need for this study. Publishing the recent history of the United States Army’s operations is a key part of the TRADOC mission to develop adaptive, innovative leaders who are flexible, culturally astute experts in the art and science of the profession of arms, and who are able to quickly adapt to the contemporary operating environment.


Unlike the previous example, nothing here is actually untrue. However it is expressed in terms that would make Pollyanna blush, drawing attention to the yawning chasm between intentions and reality.

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