‘Poor planning…lack of vision’

US military operations in Iraq following the 2003 ouster of Saddam Hussein suffered from poor planning and lack of vision, according to an army report released Sunday.

The 696-page report, called "On Point II: Transition to the New Campaign," is the army’s historical account of the 18 months following President George W. Bush’s declaration of the end of major combat in May 2003.

Military leaders and civilian officials were fixated on military triumph and removing Saddam from power, but paid too little attention to the phases that would follow, said the report posted on the army’s combined arms center website.

"The transition to a new campaign was not well thought out, planned for, and prepared for before it began," wrote report authors Donald Wright and Colonel Timothy Reese, both military historians.

"Additionally, the assumptions about the nature of post-Saddam Iraq on which the transition was planned proved to be largely incorrect."

The army’s Contemporary Operations Study Team, along with the report authors, said the army "should have insisted on better Phase IV planning and preparations through its voice on the Joint Chiefs of Staff."

"The military means employed were sufficient to destroy the Saddam regime; they were not sufficient to replace it with the type of nation-state the United States wished to see in its place."

The study is the second in a series — the first On Point covered the start of combat through to the ouster of Saddam in April 2003 — and is described by the authors as "neither triumphant nor defeatist."

Its aim is to provide "military professionals with a means to understand important and relevant lessons from the army’s recent operational experience."


  1. Sandra Price

    Pollchecker when the 2008 election is no better than the 2000 election and neither side represents a good agenda, it is time to put an agenda together to make it a balanced election in 2012. We started working on the 64 election just after JFK was elected. The problem is always the perks promised by one side or another and this is the reason our nation has gone nowhere near what any of us planned.

    I’ve made it crystal clear that we must rid the government of any more of the Bush agenda and that means the neoconservatives, the social conservatives and the religious right. The money is starting to be put on McCain as people are frightened if anyone else is in charge of our nation.

    All I’m reading is a set of diversions from Flapsaddle with nothing pointing to anyone. Trying to prove that McCain is worst possible choice will be impossible as long as that turkey is around.

    I have a choice to post here or open my own forum before the election. The problem is deeper than just removing Bush as he as a lot of Conservatives in the Congress who will defeat any plans of Obama’s. We must get them out!

    I received a list of Republicans who are opposed to the war and opposed to the prohibitions that McCain is running on. I will bring them here one of these days or I may open my own set of information items prior to 11/4.