Thinking beyond War: Civil-Military Relations and Why America Fails to Win the Peace

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Why was there a deliberate plan to fight the war in Iraq but none to win the peace? This question, which has caused such confusion and consternation among the American public and been the subject of much political wrangling, is the focus of Isaiah Wilson's investigation. Wilson points to a flaw in the government's definition of when, how, and for what reasons the United States intervenes abroad. It is a paradox in the American way of peace and war, he explains, that harkens back to America's war loss in Vietnam. The dilemma faced in Iraq can thus be seen as the result of a flaw in how we have viewed the war from its inception, and Thinking Beyond War reminds us that Iraq is just the latest, albeit the most poignant and tragic, case in point. The provided exploration of this paradox calls for new organizational and operational approaches to America's intervention policy. In challenging current western societal military lexicon and doctrine, Wilson offers new hope and practical solutions to overcome the paradox once and for all.

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About the Author:

Colonel Isaiah (Ike) Wilson III is Professor of Political Science at The United States Military Academy, West Point, USA, where he serves as Director of the American Politics, Policy, and Strategy Program in the Department of Social Sciences and Founding Director of the West Point Grand Strategy Program. He has taught previously at the National War College, Columbia University, George Washington University, and Yale, USA. A former combat aviator and current Army strategist, Wilson has served in command, planner, and advisory roles at all echelons from tactical to national/international policy levels and special mission projects. He served as the Chief of Plans of the 101st Air Assault Division in Mosul, Iraq, contributed to the Army's first assessment of Operation Iraqi Freedom, served as an advisor and planner in Kabul, Afghanistan on civil-military integration, and team lead of the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army's Veterans and Military Families transition and reintegration study group. COL Wilson current serves as Deputy Chief, Commander's Action Group (CAG), US Central Command.

Review:

"Thinking Beyond War is an exceptional examination of the historical, cultural, structural, and strategic underpinnings of the failure of the Bush administration to understand what victory in Iraq would look like and to fashion a viable plan to achieve it. In this penetrating analysis of US war making and its shortfalls since World War II, Isaiah Wilson reminds us that peace requires much more than operational military triumph and takes years to achieve even in the best of scenarios." - Peter R. Mansoor, Author of Surge: My Journey with General David Petraeus and the Remaking of the Iraq War

"Colonel Isaiah 'Ike' Wilson III is one of the brightest strategic thinkers in the U.S. army. As a soldier-scholar he has both served in Iraq and astutely examined what went wrong—and sometimes right. In Thinking beyond War he offers us the fruit of years of first-hand study and careful analysis. He urges the U.S. military to get beyond its narrow focus on winning battles and to think more broadly about how to convert battlefield success into long-term political victories. Thinking beyond War offers an invaluable guide to thinking about these difficult yet vitally important issues." - Max Boot, Senior Fellow in national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and author of War Made New and The Savage Wars of Peace

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9781403981998: Thinking beyond War: Civil-Military Relations and Why America Fails to Win the Peace

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ISBN 10:  140398199X ISBN 13:  9781403981998
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