The author has achieved extraordinary synthesis and summation, with gifted straight-forward language.This book is not only a capstone reference, but demonstrates why we need to LISTEN–none of us could learn–in a lifetime–all that this author has in his head. That's why multinational engagement is a non-negotiable first step toward the future.
Key notes and quotes:
+ Bush Senior should not have left Saddam Hussein off the hook in Gulf I, should have finished off the regime while we had enough troops on the ground to make the peace.
+ US blew Gulf II from the moment of victory onward. “Incoherent” is a word the author uses frequently in describing virtually every aspect of US operations in Iraq. The one element that gets high marks from him is the U.S. Agency for International Development (AID) but the fact that the bulk of the “reconstruction” money was mis-managed by the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) makes AID's excellent a footnote in this sorry tale.
+ Book covers 2003-2006; the author was Minister of Defense and then Minister of Finance during the reconstruction period.
+ “Too few Americans actually cared.” Fred Smith (parent agency not clear) gets high marks from the author for caring and competence as the CPA-appointed advisor to the Ministry of Defense in the 2004 timeframe.
Although I tend to shy away from sequels, I broke down and bought this at Giant to pass time away while completing a tediuous task. It was GREAT.
There is zero babe factor in this movie, which was a disappointment, it could have been scripted much more engagingly, but three things really blew me away throughout:
1) The staging or the access to ostensible Vatican inside and underground areas–presumably not actually within the Vatican, this was all done superbly
2) The twists and turns and the ending were great. I actually had tears of surprise at the end and will not spoil it.
3) Finally, Tom Hanks and the historical allusions still fascinate me. It would be great if history could be taught so ably, but more deeply and more thoroughly.
To browse all 86 of the DVDs that I recommend, visit Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog, each links back to their respective Amazon page but only there can you see JUST my DVD reviews. [Use Reviews (DVD Only) (86)]
Thom Hartmann is one of a handful of individuals that I consider to be true guides for the rest of us, and I consider two of his earlier books, Cracking the Code and SCREWED, to have been instrumental in my own transformation from recovering spy to intelligence officer to the public.