Ricks Interviews Jim Frederick on a 101st War Crime


I would say a lot of it had to do with them falling into a very muddled period of extreme strategic breakdown. They were at the tail end of the seek and destroy era of terrorist hunting, and it was not going well. This was the absolute darkest era of the war, when the men knew in their hearts that what they were being asked to do was not working, but there were no better alternatives at the time.

I was blessed by the fact that a lot of men I interviewed, on up to captains and majors, and sergeants first class and first sergeants were really, really rubbed raw about their experience and decided, eyes wide open, that they were going to be 100 percent candid with me….

But when I started getting to the lieutenant colonel and colonel level of my research, thats when I perceived that the Army field grade officer mutual protection society started to kick in. According to them, everybody was just a great officer, and everybody did helluva job, and nobody was to blame for anything bad that happened.

The first paragraph on the moral effect of executing the strategically aimless “terrorist hunting” deployments resonates strongly with my experience.

The second and third are very satisfying to see (perhaps for the first time in the GWOT era) in print.

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