Ministry of Defeat
The Army is in "denial" over Iraq, claims Richard North, author of Ministry of Defeat, a startling new book published today, the first comprehensive history of the British occupation of southern Iraq.
Charting the progress of the occupation, relying on "open source" material, the extensive official and Arab media coverage, and high level sources, he finds that the military made many serious blunders which led to an irrecoverable position. This eventually forced the retreat into a single base in Basra, leaving the city and its surrounds to fundamentalist Islamic milita....
The Army, as a corporate body, let down men and women on the ground, who performed admirably, fighting a vicious and unprincipled enemy. They were handicapped by poor strategy, inadequate equipment and insufficient resources. Without their perseverance, their skills and in some cases quite extraordinary courage, things might have been far worse.
The sad fact though is that the Army failed. More dangerously, it is refusing to acknowledge that failure and risks making the same mistakes in Afghanistan, particularly in terms of equipment procurement, where it is clear that lessons have not been learned.
A must for students of modern history and warfare.