An Opinion On The Withdrawal Of U.S. Troops From Iraq By A Decorated Commander Who Fought There
Midway, GA, –The latest news from The White House that all troops will be pulled out of Iraq by the end of December 2011 makes understanding the history of events occurring in Iraq that brought us to this point seem more relevant than ever. Awakening Victory: How Iraqi Tribes and American Troops Reclaimed al Anbar Province and Defeated al Qaeda in Iraq (Casemate Publishing) by Lt. Col. Michael E. Silverman (ret), provides exactly that.
This book, that debuts next week, is a true account of how the partnership between Iraqi tribes and American troops reclaimed al Anbar and defeated al Qaeda in Iraq. Michael Silverman was Commander of the 3rd Battalion, 69th Armored Regiment and he was right in the middle of the fight. His battalion contributed a great deal to the war in Iraq and was the only one to participate in the campaign to reclaim al Anbar Province from start to finish. Silverman offers an expert perspective on the surge in Iraq and the role of Iraqis in securing their country.
Awakening Victory reveals actions and incidents that were not released to the public before now and tells of this battalion’s actions in taking the war from one of bombs and bullets to one of partnership and ideas. Silverman’s book shows the contrast between why we were so successful in Iraq versus the failed campaign in Afghanistan, where this Administration’s heavy-handed approach to the Taliban ruined our relationship with Pakistan.
Silverman explains how many senior U.S. officials thought we had lost the war in Iraq back in 2006 after being told by Marine Corps Intelligence that al Anbar Province, the seat of the raging Sunni insurgency, was lost to insurgents. Things looked very grim – with over 100 attacks a day against U.S. military and Iraqi forces in al Anbar that led to al Qaeda planting their flag in the provincial capital of Ramadi and declaring it the new ‘Islamic State of Iraq.’
Silverman’s battalion played a huge part in the ‘surge’ in Ramadi in early 2007 in a campaign that is hailed as the D-Day of the global war on terror, and was hugely successful in clearing out al Qaeda and replacing them with locally raised and trained Iraqi police. This reduced the attacks within Ramadi from twenty a day to one or two a week within just a couple of months, and a 90 percent reduction from the previous year in attacks in the entire province.
Michael Silverman was involved throughout the entire Iraqi insurgency. His book shows a deep insight not found in most Americans’ perceptions of the war, and offers a fresh perspective of the ‘surge’ and the role of Iraqis in securing their country. Being on the front lines, his book expertly describes the exact turning point where the U.S. turned a supposedly failed war into a possibly enduring success.
Lt. Col. Michael E. Silverman, a 25 year veteran with the United States Army, is the recipient of numerous awards, medals and commendations. Retired in 2008, he spends his time writing about the war on terror and serving as a consultant to the U.S. Army on counterinsurgency. He is well-versed in international affairs and world religions and writes with the authority of someone who has both been blown-up by an IED and assisted in shaping U.S. strategic policy for the global war on terror.
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