Friday, January 12, 2007

Perspective: The brain behind the surge

Balding, bespectacled and pudgy-faced, Frederick Kagan would struggle to be noticed by, let alone inspire, the battle-weary US soldiers heading to Baghdad.

But this military historian and resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, a right-wing think-tank, managed last month to rekindle the flames of defiance deep within President Bush. At that time, the Iraq Study Group’s report appeared to represent a bleak consensus that the war was being lost. Mr Bush was being told to start bringing the troops home.

According to Mr Kagan’s colleagues, when the President met him it was as if a burden was lifted from Mr Bush’s shoulders. “He said, ‘Wow, you mean we can actually still win this war?’” one said. The title of Mr Kagan’s alternative strategy is Choosing Victory: A Plan for Success in Iraq.

Read the rest at the Times of London