Battle Ready

( 10 )

Overview

Marine general Tony Zinni was known as the "Warrior Diplomat" during his nearly forty years of service. His credentials as a soldier were impeccable, whether he was leading troops in Vietnam, commanding hair-raising rescue operations in Somalia, or - as Commander in Chief of CENTCOM - directing strikes against Iraq and Al Qaeda. But it was as a peacemaker that he made just as great a mark - conducting dangerous troubleshooting missions all over Africa, Asia, and Europe, and then serving as Secretary of State ...

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Overview

Marine general Tony Zinni was known as the "Warrior Diplomat" during his nearly forty years of service. His credentials as a soldier were impeccable, whether he was leading troops in Vietnam, commanding hair-raising rescue operations in Somalia, or - as Commander in Chief of CENTCOM - directing strikes against Iraq and Al Qaeda. But it was as a peacemaker that he made just as great a mark - conducting dangerous troubleshooting missions all over Africa, Asia, and Europe, and then serving as Secretary of State Colin Powell's special envoy to the Middle East, before disagreements over the 2003 Iraq war and its probable aftermath caused him to resign." Battle Ready follows the evolution of both General Zinni and the Marine Corps, from the cauldron of Vietnam through the operational revolution of the '70s and '80s, to the new realities of the post-Cold War, post-9/11 military - a military with a radically different tools for accomplishing it. Opinions differ sharply about just what that job and those tools should be - and General Zinni makes it clear where he stands.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
"In the lead-up to the Iraq War and its later conduct, I saw at a minimum, true dereliction, negligence, and irresponsibility, at worse, lying, incompetence and corruption." So says former U.S. Central Command commander in chief Zinni, who retired in September 2000 and has been outspoken ever since regarding the uses and abuses of the U.S. military. This book is the latest of Clancy's nonfiction Commanders series, which has previously featured collaborations with Gen. Fred Franks Jr. of the army, Gen. Chuck Horner of the air force and Gen. Carl Stiner, formerly U.S. Special Operations commander. As in those books, Clancy gives adequate background on his subject and his subject's context, then quotes him liberally, consigning tens of pages at a time to Zinni's italicized first-person reflections. Beginning the book with the 1998 CentCom-coordinated attack on Saddam Hussein (the unfortunately named Operation Desert Fox), Clancy and Zinni next move through 150 or so pages of Zinni's service as a Philadelphia-born (in 1947) Marine infantry officer during Vietnam and his racially charged Headquarters and Service stint on Okinawa in the early '70s. The book then flashes forward to the end of the Cold War and steams along from there, with details on Zinni's European command service, including 1990 meetings with a recently de-Sovietized Russian army and support operations during the Persian Gulf War. Zinni joined CentCom just in time for the Somalia debacle, and he is candid about its failings. Over the next years, Zinni traveled widely in parts of the world that were obscure to the U.S. then (Pakistan, Central Asia), but are central now, and played cat-and-mouse with Saddam regarding weapons inspections all through the late '90s. But it is Zinni's 24-page closing statement, "The Calling," that will sell the book to nonbuff civilians, summing up his service and the ways in which he feels his generation's legacy is in jeopardy. (June 1) Forecast: Often too detailed for nonenthusiasts, this BOMC Main Selection and Military Book Club Main Selection will be used as background by pundits and other writers trying to understand the relation of Clinton-era dealings with Saddam to those of Bush 43. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Having already joined with military leaders on three previous titles, Clancy here drafts Marine general Zinni, Colin Powell's special envoy in the Middle East until he resigned over the Iraq war. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780425198926
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/3/2005
  • Series: Commander Series , #4
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 464
  • Sales rank: 682,124
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.04 (d)

Meet the Author

Tom Clancy was the author of eighteen #1 New York Times-bestselling novels. His first effort, The Hunt for Red October, sold briskly as a result of rave reviews, then catapulted onto the bestseller list after President Ronald Reagan pronounced it "the perfect yarn." Clancy was the undisputed master at blending exceptional realism and authenticity, intricate plotting, and razor-sharp suspense. He died in October 2013.

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    1. Hometown:
      Huntingtown, Maryland
    1. Date of Birth:
      April 12, 1947
    2. Place of Birth:
      Baltimore, Maryland
    1. Date of Death:
      October 1, 2013
    2. Place of Death:
      Baltimore, Maryland

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER ONE

Desert Fox

THE TOMAHAWKS WERE SPINNING up in their tubes.

It was November 12, 1998. U.S. Marine General Tony Zinni, the commander in chief of United States Central Command (CENTCOM), was standing in his command room overlooking the command center at CENTCOM's Tampa, Florida, headquarters, leading the preparations for what promised to be the most devastating attack on Iraq since the 1991 Gulf War.

The spacious command center was fitted out with desks, phones, computers, maps, and large and small screens showing updates and the positions of aircraft and ships. In addition to the usual office-type furnishings, the windowed room had secure phones and video communications with Zinni's superiors and his commanders in the field. It was Zinni's battle position-the bridge of his ship.

At the end of the First Gulf War, Iraq had agreed to the UN-supervised destruction of its weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and the programs to develop and build them. That agreement had been a lie. The Saddam Hussein regime had never intended to give up its WMD program, and for the next seven years it had conducted a running battle with UNSCOM, the UN inspection operation in Iraq, to protect its programs in any way possible . . . by hiding them, moving them around, lying, stonewalling, delay, and noncooperation.

The two essential issues covered by the UN mandate were compliance and accountability. That is, the inspectors had to ask and get satisfactory answers to these questions: "Are the Iraqis in compliance with the UN requirement to destroy their WMD and completely dismantle their WMD programs? And are they satisfactorily accounting for the programs and WMD they claim to have destroyed?" The absence of Iraqi cooperation on both of these issues led UNSCOM to make the obvious assumption that the Iraqis were hiding something-either that the weapons still existed or that the Iraqis at least wanted to maintain their capability to make them. UNSCOM had to look hard at the worst case.*

When UNSCOM had persisted in carrying out the UN mandate, the Iraqis had raised the stakes-by making it ever harder for UNSCOM to do its job. There had been greater and greater threats and intimidation, lies, obstruction, and hostility . . . allied with a diplomatic assault aimed at splitting off powerful states friendly to Iraq (principally France, Russia, and China) from the rest of the Security Council and using their support to sabotage the disarmament effort.

With each Iraqi escalation came a counterthreat from the United States: "If UNSCOM is forced to leave Iraq with their work unfinished, the U.S. will hit Iraq and hit it hard." The threat caught the Iraqis' attention. As each escalation neared its climax, and the inspectors started to pull out of the country, the Saddam Hussein regime blinked, backed down, and let them return-though each time with fewer teeth.

But now it looked like the Iraqis were not going to blink. The day before, November 11, the UN inspection teams had left once again, apparently for good. As they left, President Clinton had given Zinni the signal to go. The twenty-four-hour launch clock had started.

Zinni knew the moment was approaching for the cruise missile launch-the moment of truth. These weren't airplanes. Once the Tomahawks were in the air, they could not be recalled.

Before him was an open line to the White House, where the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) vice-chairman, Air Force General Joe Ralston, was sitting. Before him, too, was another line to his Navy component commander, Vice Admiral Willy Moore, in Bahrain. Moore was in constant communications with the eight ships that would launch the initial cruise missile salvo. The clock ticked on.

The twenty-four hours passed. Zinni had told the President that the strike could be stopped at any moment up to six hours before the bombs were scheduled to hit. That was the drop-dead time for a no-go decision. As it happened, he had built in fifteen minutes of fudge time as a safety margin.

But the no-go deadline had passed. And so had Zinni's fifteen minutes of fudge time.

He took a deep breath-and then the line from the White House lit up: Saddam was backing down again. He'd agreed to UNSCOM's demands.

General Ralston's voice came down the wire: "It's a no-go. Don't shoot," he told Zinni. "Do we have any time left? Is it okay?"

Zinni honestly didn't know. All he could do was grab the phone and call Willy Moore. . . .

FOR ZINNI, this story had begun fifteen months before, on August 13, 1997, when he'd been appointed the sixth CINC (commander in chief) of CENTCOM.*

As commander, Zinni watched over a vast region including most of the Middle East, East Africa, and Southwest and Central Asia. His challenges were legion: the delicate, complex relationships with his regional allies; the rising threat of terrorism, led by the not yet world-famous Osama bin Laden; the growing proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; the chronic problems of failed or incapable states, civil wars, border disputes, and criminal activities such as drug trafficking and smuggling; and the difficult task of containing the two regional hegemons, Iran and Iraq.

Though he would have preferred a balanced approach to all the regional issues rather than having to concentrate his energies and CENTCOM's capabilities on America's obsession with Saddam Hussein, by far Zinni's biggest challenge proved to be enforcing the UN-imposed post-Gulf War sanctions on Saddam's regime. In his view, Saddam could be contained and marginalized; making him the issue only gave him more clout and distracted the U.S. from more important regional issues, such as the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, Iran, terrorism, and the building of security relationships.

Not long after he became CINC, he proposed a six-point strategic program to William Cohen, President Clinton's Secretary of Defense, aimed at this more balanced approach. After a polite hearing with Cohen and a session with the Senate Majority and Minority Leaders and the Speaker of the House, Zinni was told to stay out of policy and to stick to execution. "Yes, sir," he said-always a good Marine.

Meanwhile, the magnitude of the Iraq problem was once again brought home only five days after he took command, at an extended meeting at CENTCOM headquarters with Ambassador Richard Butler, the new head of UNSCOM. CENTCOM provided support for UNSCOM with UN-supervised U-2 flights over Iraq.

Zinni was already familiar with these missions. Before his appointment as commander, he had, as General Peay's deputy, coordinated the CENTCOM support missions with Butler's predecessor, Rolf Ekeus.

On the face of it, UNSCOM's mandate was straightforward. UN Resolution 687, which set up UNSCOM (and which Iraq had accepted and agreed to support), had directed Iraq to "destroy, remove, or render harmless" its WMD and any missiles with a range greater than 150 kilometers. This process was to have three stages: Iraq would declare its WMD and missiles, UNSCOM would verify the declaration as accurate, and then together UNSCOM and the Iraqis would destroy them.

The Iraqis had given Ekeus a hard time; but his problems were nothing compared with the obstacles they were already putting in the way of his successor. Iraqi efforts to conceal their WMD programs-their "hideous charade," in Butler's words-were to have dramatic consequences for Tony Zinni.

THOUGH TONY ZINNI did not look like a recruiting poster, he was instantly recognizable as a Marine. He was slightly under medium height, solidly built, barrel-chested, with dark hair cut in the jarhead Marine fashion-very short with shaved back and sides. His look was normally intent, thoughtful, direct, and friendly; laughter came easily to him; and he had the social openness, warmth, and common touch that came from long exposure to all kinds and varieties of people. Hardened by a lifetime of military service-and most especially by Vietnam, which had radically changed him-tough decisions didn't faze him.

Before becoming the head of UNSCOM, Richard Butler had been the Australian ambassador to the UN, with considerable expertise in arms control and WMD issues. Like Zinni, he came out of a working-class urban Catholic background (Zinni grew up in Philadelphia, Butler in Sydney); and, like Zinni, he was a burly, physically imposing man, friendly, direct, outspoken, and tough.

Not surprisingly, the two men connected easily. Both men listened well and were not reluctant to express their views.

Butler's first words to Zinni made it clear that he would not play favorites. He'd call the pitches as he saw them. But a successful outcome to the inspections was all up to the Iraqis. If they opened up and came clean with their missiles and WMD, he would give them a clean bill of health, and they'd get their reward-the lifting of the draconian sanctions imposed as a consequence of their invasion of Kuwait in 1990.

So far they had shown zero inclination to come clean-anything but-while crying crocodile tears over their fellow Iraqis, who were enduring the terrible sanctions imposed by the American Satan. (Saddam's henchmen, meanwhile, lived royally in palaces.)

When it came down to the naked truth, Saddam's regime was far more interested in keeping their WMD and missile programs than in lifting the sanctions. Yet if they could get the sanctions removed while keeping their WMD, all the better.

Butler had no illusions about the other players in this high-stakes game, either: he was well aware that the Americans had their own agenda-not to mention the UN bureaucracy, the French, the Russians, the Chinese, and everyone else with a stake in what went on inside the nation with the world's second-largest proven oil reserves . . . a nation whose government was arguably the most repressive since Stalin's USSR.

The Iraqis, well aware of these agendas, played everyone off against each other, trying various gambits aimed at ending or at least weakening UNSCOM-from conning Butler, to putting a wedge in the Security Council, to appealing to the Secretary-General for a diplomatic solution (meaning a diplomatic surrender to Iraq). The Iraqis rightly believed that the French, Russians, and Chinese would stand to gain if the sanctions were removed; but their backing had conditions. It had to be covered over by a mask of support for the previous resolutions calling for disarmament. The Iraqis also rightly believed that the Secretary-General and his staff were hopeful of attaining a "diplomatic solution," even if that meant sacrificing the Security Council's goal of achieving Iraqi disarmament.

The U.S. agenda was even more subtle and complex. The Americans were increasingly coming to understand that disarmament would never happen with Saddam in power. It was therefore not in their interest for the Iraqis to be seen to comply with UN directives and thus to have the sanctions lifted. In the American view, if Saddam appeared to comply with the inspectors, seemed to meet the conditions set by the UN resolution, and was given a clean bill of health, then he would no doubt restart the WMD programs he had not successfully protected from inspection.

As time passed, the Americans' goal for Iraq shifted from the WMD-sanctions equation to regime change-a goal they could not openly advocate because of the UN resolutions they had backed. Yet it was clear they had no intention of dropping the sanctions as long as Saddam Hussein's regime ran Iraq.

The American policy shift did not make Richard Butler's job any easier. It obviously meant there was no motivation for Saddam to comply with the UN conditions. If the regime and not the WMD was the issue, then there was no reason for them not to keep the WMD programs. . . . Of course, that was an excuse and not a reason. Saddam intended to keep his programs no matter what.

OVER THE next months, the Iraqis did their best to scam Butler. The scam didn't work. As they realized he was not a pushover-and was becoming increasingly exasperated by their lies and tricks-they ratcheted up the stakes with attempts at intimidation. By the end of October 1997, they were putting more and more obstacles in the way of the UNSCOM inspectors, and making serious and quite naked threats. At this point, they had two immediate goals: to protect several key sites they had designated "presidential"; and to remove anything "American" from the inspection process, including the U-2 flights. (Of the approximately one thousand UNSCOM inspection staff, about a quarter were American.)

Meanwhile, the Iraqi failure to cooperate had provoked CENTCOM contingency plans for retaliatory air strikes. Though there had been U.S. strikes against the Iraqis before Zinni became CINC, they had been relatively limited. Zinni's strikes were intended to hurt.

The crisis came to a head in early November, when the Iraqis ordered all the American inspectors to leave Iraq and threatened to shoot down the U-2. Although hitting the high-flying aircraft would have taken a very lucky shot, it was possible.

The question: How to respond to the threat? A U-2 mission was scheduled for November 10. Obviously, an attempt to knock it out would be followed by American bombs. But was the threat alone reason enough to hit Saddam?

That was Zinni's position. He did not favor flying the mission, preferring instead to strike Iraq immediately (based on the threat), or else to punish them in other ways, such as increasing the airspace in the no-fly zone/no-drive zone enforcement area.*

But Washington thought otherwise. Their decision was to fly the U-2; and Zinni was ordered to be prepared to conduct immediate air and missile attacks on Iraq if the plane was fired upon. In preparation for the strike, he flew out to the friendly countries in the Gulf to secure agreements to use their airspace, bases, and territorial waters for the strike-a round of visits he would make several times as head of CENTCOM.

On the way, he visited the U-2 pilots at their base in Saudi Arabia. There he learned that the squadron commander had decided to fly the flight himself, an act that impressed Zinni, who later awarded him an air medal for flying into the engagement zones of hostile Iraqi surface-to-air missiles.

Getting agreement from the friendly leaders in the region was not automatic. They were nervous about the strike. Though none had any illusions about the Iraqi leader, they all had a great deal of sympathy for the long-suffering Iraqi people-Arabs, just as they were. A solution that did nothing for the Iraqi people made no sense to them. Thus they all backed an attack that would remove Saddam, but in their minds, yet another round of "pinprick" bombings only made him stronger.

In the end, however, they agreed to a strike if the U-2 was fired upon. Despite their serious questions about the benefits of the U.S. air strikes, they always came through with their support (contrary to U.S. media reports), but preferred to keep the extent of their support private.

The U-2 flew as scheduled on November 10. During the flight, Zinni sat with senior Saudi leaders in the Saudi Ministry of Defense in Riyadh, but in direct communication with CENTCOM's air operations center, ready to give the order to strike at the first indication that the plane was threatened.

As had often happened before, Saddam's threat turned out to be hollow. The flight was uneventful.

On November 14, in the face of the Iraqi demand to remove the Americans, Butler evacuated the entire contingent of inspectors; but after several days of intense diplomatic activity, they were all able to return-though, once again, with less freedom to operate than before. Every "diplomatic solution" lessened UNSCOM's ability to get the disarmament job done.

Meanwhile, the Iraqi lies and threats did not stop; and over the next months, Saddam raised the stakes again and again-always probing for weaknesses, always trying to limit UNSCOM's effectiveness.

In response, CENTCOM built up forces in the region to be ready to strike if the inspectors were no longer able to do their business. This operation became known as "Desert Thunder."

In February, Secretary of Defense Cohen and Zinni conducted a four-day trip to eleven countries to gain support for a major air strike if Butler's inspectors were unable to carry out their mission. By February 17, when a confrontation with Saddam seemed imminent, President Clinton announced in a televised speech that the U.S. would act if he did not cooperate with the inspectors. Zinni briefed the President and key cabinet members on the planned strike and defense of American allies in the region.

But once again Saddam made a last-minute retreat. A February 20 visit to Baghdad by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan got an agreement from Saddam to resume cooperation with Butler; yet it was clearly only a matter of time before this cooperation would collapse.

Meanwhile, the U.S. forces that had been added to the units already in the region remained in the Gulf, poised to strike.

—from Battle Ready by Tom Clancy with General Tony Zinni (Ret.) and Tony Koltz, Copyright © 2004 C.P. Commanders, Inc., published by G.P. Putnam's Sons, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., all rights reserved, reprinted with permission from the publisher."

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Interviews & Essays

An Interview with General Anthony Zinni

Barnes & Noble.com: What made you want to write the book?

General Anthony Zinni: Tom Clancy and the publishers approached me. They said they were interested in using my memoirs as the fourth in a series on commanders that Tom has put together. I was flattered.

B&N.com: It's been noted that you're somewhat different from the others in Clancy's Commanders series.

AZ: What makes me unique from the others is I might have had a second career in public service on the diplomatic side, which really began before I actually left the service. I had several diplomatic missions, and then after I left the service I was called to the State Department on a couple of diplomatic missions.

B&N.com: How was it collaborating with Tom Clancy?

AZ: It was great because he was encouraging and he wanted to be sure I was telling my story. This is a combination biography-autobiography, so it was very unique and there is a lot of work and research on his part. But he wanted to be sure it reflected who I was. Over time I became very good friends with Tom. I was very encouraged by him -- he provided me with a lot of motivation and incentive. It was a pretty tough course that lasted 19 months. It was a lot of hard work.

B&N.com: What is the major theme of the book and your message to readers?

AZ: The theme that jumps out right from the beginning, when I was a second lieutenant in Vietnam, was that I found myself living with the people and immersing myself in the culture. Whether it was a war or a humanitarian operation or peacekeeping operation or a diplomatic mission, I think what was imprinted on me early on was understanding the culture, understanding the environment you are in. I had the greatest appreciation for that because that may be the most important element we leave out when we try to resolve a conflict, whether it is through military conflict or through negotiations.

B&N.com: You are known as the "Warrior Diplomat." It sounds like a bit of an oxymoron. How did you get that name and what does it mean?

AZ: It really started when I became a general officer in the European Command. The Cold War had ended and we were taking on many diverse and different missions. I found myself in the former Soviet Union with Ambassador Rich Armitage on a mission to start something akin to a second Marshall Plan. I found myself in a number of places where we were negotiating or where we were on missions where we were responsible in the military for not only the security peace but also the political, economic, and social peace. In Somalia, for example, we worked with Ambassador Bob Oakley. As a general officer, I found myself often working in areas that weren't truly military and the political side, the economic side, the humanitarian side -- so it began there. And I also ended up on several presidential missions, looking at ways to resolve conflict without the use of force.

B&N.com: What was the most challenging and meaningful experience you had as a general officer?

AZ: The most challenging experience I had had to do with Somalia. The situation was extremely complex. I think we got into it for the right reasons. President [George H. W.] Bush put us in there for truly altruistic, humanitarian reasons. Unfortunately, we didn't understand that once we got into that, we inherited all of the problems -- security, political, and everything else. The most frustrating was trying to put together something on the ground that would be acceptable. The situation deteriorated to the point where it was very difficult to get something moving. And watching over the years and three different involvements there, the place just disintegrated and the difficulty for us to get any traction or any momentum. It was discouraging. We tried our best to help the Somali people because for a while it was going to be their last hope.

The best, in military terms, it would have to be the operation United Shield in Somalia, where we had to cover the withdrawal of the UN forces. We did it under fire and without a single casualty, which was truly remarkable.

B&N.com: Prior to the Iraq war, how did you come to oppose intervention and on what grounds?

AZ: Before the war, I certainly was not opposed to military action against Saddam. I thought Saddam was contained. The time to take this action was wrong. We had other, more significant problems in this area -- the war on terrorism, the Middle East process, Iran, Afghanistan. I just thought that this was something that if we took it on, it was going to take away resources from more serious problems. It could wait.

Once we decided to take it on, I became concerned because what I saw as the rationale -- the weapons of mass destruction, the association with terrorism -- I did not see those issues as imminent threats or as credible a threat as was being made out. When we rushed to war, we didn't let the UN process play out, build a coalition as we had done so masterfully in the first Persian Gulf War. That really worried me because I thought if we do this unilaterally, this is going to become much more difficult, our military is going to become tied down, our reputation and image are going to be harmed in doing it.

Finally, when I saw the lack of planning and preparation other than the military, I realized that the other pieces of this that were so critical -- political reconstruction, economic reconstruction, social reconstruction -- were not going to have the same attention, same detail planning, same level of quality decisions on the ground. And what really hurt was watching this as it unfolded and seeing all of my concerns come to pass and people on the ground making well-intended but bad decisions: allowing the security situation to come apart, an overreliance on the exiles and putting too much trust into their input -- a whole series of mistakes that were avoidable. Not just me but many others were cautioning and voicing these concerns. Right now because of the book, my concerns are most vocal and I've taken the most hits for them.

B&N.com: Why was the administration so unprepared for the Iraqi resistance that emerged, and why is the war going so badly?

AZ: I think there are a couple of factors that played into that. One is the rosy picture presented by the exiles about how the American troops would be received on the ground. I think also the administration believed they would be welcomed as liberators and finally having people free of Saddam would sort of self-generate the kind of constructive development on the ground from the Iraqis. There were those (in the administration) that had the strategic belief and philosophy that invading Iraq would be the catalyst for change in the Middle East. They believed that the response would be so positive, and this was fed by what they were hearing from the exiles that they overly trusted.

B&N.com: If the president came to you for advice now about the war, what would you tell him?

AZ: I think there are several things. You need that UN resolution -- you need that sense of international legitimacy. You need to be able to go to other nations to be able to ask for their support. It may be a little late now to get boots on the ground but certainly you can get other kinds of support like help in training security forces, help in the economy and other things. But that is key.

Secondly, every possible effort must be made to make sure that whatever government is put in place is acceptable to the Iraqi people. Also, I think work needs to be done on the security forces. Resources must be committed for training viable security forces. We can't have them fold in the face of opposition. Also, we have to get to the Iraqi businessmen and start the economy moving and try to bring together foreign investors and donors to help them. And look at the security development they need to get the businesses going.

B&N.com: After a brilliant military career and a diplomatic career in which you were on the inside defending and making policy -- how does it feel now to have yourself ostracized and so strongly criticized by members of the current administration, of which you were a part?

AZ: It's painful, to be honest with you. I offered my concerns in the beginning as concerns. When I voiced these concerns, it was not intended to embarrass the administration. In August before the war, the president said he wanted to hear the debate. To me, that meant he wanted the issues out on the table. As soon as I voiced my concerns, it became personal. Not by the president, but by others. I was called a traitor and a turncoat. It was unbelievable. When the war started, I backed off. I wanted them to succeed. I suffered these slings and arrows until the book came out. But it's really about my 40-year career -- there is very little about Iraq.

B&N.com: Do you plan to write another book?

AZ: I might do one on conflict resolution. It would involve my thoughts on preventing conflicts and seeing that they don't recur. This would deal with conflict resolution since the end of the Cold War.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2006

    A candid, important assessment, first rate book, about U.S. military and foreign relations.

    This book, co written with General Tony Zinni, tells of the methods, means, and the reasons for our military. The last part, when General Zinni pulls no punches, about our approach to war, foreign relations, and when to use and how to use the military [with the help of the civilian authority] to fight smarter battles and when to fight, is an excellent assessment of our current problems in the U.S. His approach to fight in a 'smarter' way, reflecting the new realities of war, e.g., terrorism, and an ever changing world, is the way it should be-and not to declare 'victory', if that is the objective, on an aircraft carrier as a photo-op [his words], and to support the ideas that are right and to criticize the ideas that are wrong, even if they are 'politically' incorrect. A first rate book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2005

    An unmatched leadership guide.

    As a former lieutenant under Tony Zinni when he was a battalion commander in 1980, I saw close at hand how this man was destined for greatness. Superb communicator, forward looking thinker, amazing intellect, inspiring and compassionate leader, amazing ability to get results without wearing out his people. This book should be required reading for all who lead...regardless of military or civilian endeavors.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted December 26, 2011

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    Posted August 31, 2011

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    Posted December 16, 2008

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