View Full Version : New Hearts and Minds

01-30-2006, 05:01 PM
What do you think of this? Good, bad, indifferent?


01-30-2006, 06:01 PM
LTG Chiarelli has a proven track record of success with this sort of approach, and has demonstrated an ability to motivate subordinate commanders. I think this plan/approach is correct, and believe that by satisfying basic needs (safety and subsistence) that he will surely gain popular support; however, is the point of the exercise to purely weaken popular support for the insurgency, or is it to increase the credibility and legtimacy of the government? Regardless of what is done internally, the insurgency will continue so long as the borders remain unsecured and pourous.

01-30-2006, 06:15 PM
I think you and I, Major, are once again on a similar wavelength. I think its a step in the right direction, I just hope it is soon enough to have an effect. It would be sad if this was begun to late or done in a half-hearted manner so that it fails then the idea will likely be considered a "failure" and discarded for the future.

01-30-2006, 06:31 PM
I think Maj. Strickland has an excellent point about the borders - however I don't believe the solution is anything so "easy" as simply closing off a few hundred miles of desert.

Porous borders are a problem *because* al Qaeda in Iraq (and presumably other insurgent groups) receives recruits, arms and support across those borders. In addition to the military task of tightening border controls, it's important to remember that there is an information war in process (in which the insurgents are doing quite well) as well as police and intelligence actions to deal with. What can we do to reduce the attraction for young Muslims to travelling to Syria and joining aQI? What means ought to be deployed to catch or hinder the process of moving these recruits around? Our new General (and no doubt thousands of highly trained soldiers) will be wasting their effort unless we can stem demand by means of proper dissemination of information and appropriate counter action in the third party nations. Those methods are largely beyond his area of immediate control - although he can definitely do something about the information war.

Brian B
01-31-2006, 03:50 AM
Major Strickland,
Philosophically, it sounds to me to be the same as what MGen Mattis proposed in Al Anbar province when we were there. Where does it differ, or how will it be more effective? Evidently something went better (according to the article) where Gen Chiarelli operated than it did west of there. Where is the chance better for success with this plan compared to other plans, since the intentions sound the same?
Is security truly deemphasized, or is the journalist simply misinterpreting or misstating the position?
Your thoughts.....