David Kilcullen, a counter-terrorism expert from Australia, who is now an adviser to Condoleezza Rice, called the decision to invade Iraq "stupid" -- in fact, he said "f*cking stupid." He goes on to say, "The biggest stupid idea was to invade Iraq in the first place."
Kilcullen's comments are printed by The Washington Independent from a draft copy of A Counterinsurgency Guide for Politicos-Eighth in a Series: The Rise of the Counterinsurgents. This manual is be prepared to help those involved in policy making to have the same kind of understanding that the military does. It is intended for "Cabinet-level" officials and their staffs.
Among the novel concepts included in the manual are:
- negotiations are a two-way street in counterinsurgency
- integrate civilian and military agencies into a concerted strategy
- intervening to support an oppressive, authoritarian or abusive government against an insurgency is extremely problematic
- it is folly to intervene . . . unless there is a reasonable likelihood that the affected government will cooperate
- and a really novel idea (at least for the Bush Whitehouse) RESPECT PEOPLE