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Anbar Awakening

The Truth About the Anbar Awakening

Editor's note: This week, Fox News Opinion is pleased to feature an exclusive excerpt from the new book by Mitchell Reiss, "Negotiating With Evil: When to Talk to Terrorists." The following excerpt is taken from the book's " Anbar Awakening " chapter.The causes and consequences of the Anbar Awakening have been widely mischaracterized and misunderstood. The conventional wisdom is that the Awakening started in the summer of 2006, led by a powerful and charismatic sheikh in the provincial capital city of Ramadi . It was nurtured and encouraged as part of a masterful counter-insurgency (COIN) strategy that had been fundamentally rethought and re-engineered by the U.S. Army and Marines. It was largely “non-kinetic,” involving not the use of force but only reconstruction funds, information operations and “three cups of tea.” It succeeded because of dumb luck. It eliminated Al Qaeda . It was then duplicated across Iraq in later initiatives, such as the Concerned Local Citizens (CLC) and Sons ...

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