Monday, June 16, 2008

Book Review: Moment of Truth in Iraq

Michael Yon is perhaps the most respected reporter in Iraq. He is a former Green Beret so he knows what it is to be a soldier, and knows how soldiers think. He has also been embedded with troops in Iraq more than any other reporter, so he also knows what it is like to be a journalist in a war zone. Anyone who wants an honest and accurate assessment of the War in Iraq must read his book Moment of Truth in Iraq: How a New 'Greatest Generation' of American Soldiers is Turning Defeat and Disaster into Victory and Hope


Michael Yon has become famous for his blog posts and dispatches from the front lines of Iraq. In this book, he draws on some of his dispatches and photos and adds to it a comparison of how Iraq looked when he first embedded with troops versus his most recent "deployment". Far from being a cheerleader for the Bush administration, Mr. Yon points out many of our errors in the early phases of the war. He notes that if Al-Queda had made more of a few of our mistakes, we would have had no chance to win the war. Mr. Yon doesn't subscribe to the view of today's left wing either. He points out that we have come far, and are winning the war now. It isn't won, but it can be.


Michael Yon is obviously a fan of today's soldier. However, he doesn't allow that to cloud his judgment. He notes the failures and successes of our troops, their commanders, and their Iraqi counterparts. Anyone reading this book with a preconceived notion of how the Iraq war has gone is likely to have their beliefs called into question. I was no exception. As much as I believe we went to war for very valid reasons, and that we have tried to do our best, I cannot escape the fact that we have made great mistakes in Iraq. Anyone who doesn't question their views on Iraq after reading this book hasn't really paid attention to the book.


At some time in the future, the War in Iraq will be taught in history classes. We are at the point where we can make that story a success or a failure, the choice is ours. Whatever we decide, future generations will start their study of the war with Moment of Truth in Iraq.

7 comments:

Christina said...

Andy, thank you once again for a book review that speaks strongly to me. I'm on my way to order "Moment of Truth..." Like you, I feel as well that we entered the war for very valid reasons, but I know very little of inside details and truth. I have a strong desire to know much more than that.

Andy D said...

Thanks for the compliment. I really believe anyone interested in what is happening in Iraq will learn something from this book.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's been a long time coming, but the real victory is finally being won in Iraq--the one we've all been waiting for.

Andy D said...

I actually don't have a problem with that article. The heart of the story is that U.S. oil companies got contracts in Iraq (good for the U.S.), production of Iraqi oil fields could be increased in the next six months, and more over the next several years (good for the U.S. and the world), and technology and money will be brought to Iraq (good for Iraq). I think the news story is a good one.

Kram said...

I would certainly consider that a victory. New jobs for Iraqi citizens, a much needed inflow of funds to the country, and the introduction of new technology, how can any of that be bad?

Nice review, Andy! "Moment of Truth in Iraq" will be added to my list of books to read.

Andy D said...

Glad I could help, and I hope you enjoy it. Do you think Anonymous meant that link as an inspirational story?

Kram said...

Yes, he could have. Maybe I'm thinking of the wrong Anonymous.