- Nov 22, 2003
- Reaction score
Wow, seems he's been thinking of the change in strategy for 20 years!
Petraeus strategy takes aim at post-Vietnam mind-set
By Jim Michaels, USA TODAY
Twenty years ago, David Petraeus, then a young Army officer, wrote a Ph.D. dissertation for Princeton University, saying many of the lessons U.S. military leaders learned from the Vietnam War were wrong.
Generals had become hesitant to commit forces except when they could win conventional battles with superior American firepower. "The senior military have universally been more cautious since Vietnam," Petraeus wrote.
That hesitancy posed a problem in Petraeus' view. The U.S. military was turning away from the very fight insurgencies that it would likely confront. The United States' enemies had also learned from Vietnam and would not want to confront U.S. military might head-on.
Now the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Petraeus is following his own advice. Since he arrived in Baghdad last month, U.S. troops are moving off large bases and into combat outposts in the city's turbulent neighborhoods. Aides insist the new strategy is beginning to show positive results, particularly in the capital: