Proceedings February 2012 Vol. 138/2/1,308 : Page 75

The unnecessary deaths of U.S. mili-tary personnel caused by overly rigid ROE came to light when the Medal of Honor was awarded to Marine Sergeant Dakota Meyer, after it was revealed that during the 2009 action for which he earned that award, U.S. soldiers died because the fire support then-Corporal Meyer had requested was refused. Supporting com-mand decision-makers were hesitant to act lest they violate the ROE. An investigation into the incident determined that these of-ficers were negligent in refusing Corporal Meyer’s request but did not take into ac-count higher command failure to provide less-restrictive ROE and clear command guidance. Through Bolgiano’s leadership and in an effort to correct ROE that are more re-strictive than legally required or politically necessary, the authors have conducted use of force/ROE training at the U.S. Army War College and, at the request of other military commands, throughout the United States. Readers of this book will benefit from their research and experience. In some cases the authors have put for-ward arguments that may be extreme. In reaction to the Fort Hood massacre, they argue that military personnel on military bases should be armed at all times. But the risk of negligent discharge of a weapon due to the fundamental inadequacy of firearms training makes this impractical. Further, the authors question the treatment provided Guantanamo detainees, correctly noting it exceeds that required for prison-ers of war (a status to which Guantanamo detainees are not entitled), but they offer no alternatives. Finally, they challenge the military’s performing missions that are not directly related to our national security interests, such as those it conducted in the Bal-kans, Haiti, Somalia, Libya, and nation-building operations, particularly given our responsibilities as the lone superpower. However correct this view may be, it is a fundamental American principle that our military is under and must respect civilian authority. A response to the inappropriate use of our military forces by the political leadership lies through the resignation of senior military officers and appointed of-ficials or in the voting booth. Our history shows the latter is the only dependable option. This book will invite strong reactions. As noted, the authors sought to challenge the status quo in the hope of correcting the many shortcomings they identify. It is an excellent book and would be ideal for a war-college course or seminar discus-sions. At the very least it should be read by serving officers and openly but fairly debated. Colonel Parks served with the 1st Marine Division in Vietnam, 1968-1969. On 29 October 2010, he retired as senior associate deputy general counsel, Depart-ment of Defense, concluding 42 years of military and civilian service. He was the Proceedings Author of the Year in 1990. The End of Modern History in the Middle East Bernard Lewis. Stanford, CA: Hoover Institution Press, 2011. 188 pp. Foreword. Intro. Index. $19.95. Reviewed by Commander Youssef Aboul-Enein, MSC, U.S. Navy Having read Bernard Lewis for years, I can always count on his work to be intellectually provocative, which is why I return to it time and again. The Princ-eton University Middle-East scholar has written many books, and his latest explores a collection of ideas that at-tempts to explain the complexity of the Middle East, its history, and its people. He observes that even today, some re-sponsible Arab statesmen and scholars blame their situation on conspiracy theories that previous generations of leaders favored. Currently, the people of the Middle East have no colonialist to blame, and even the era of the neo-colonialist Arab despots is coming to an end, leaving Arabs to accept responsibil-ity for their own affairs. If one follows closely the events of the Arab Spring, it’s clear that Lewis may be on to something. The generation of pro-testors that provoked the Tahrir Square uprising exhibits a boldness the previous generation never showed. In some circles of Arab youth, this borders on contempt for their parents’ generation for having accepted a social contract in which the despot subsidized daily living in return for blind loyalty. In places such as Egypt, this contract began to fray with Anwar Sadat and became acute under Hosni Mubarak as Egypt’s population swelled to 85 million, at a rate of about one mil-lion a year. Lewis’ characterization of our adver-sary as Islamic fundamentalism, how-ever, is becoming tiresome. This trope had its day but is not useful in the second decade of the 21st century. The truth is far more complex, with militant Islamists trying to impose an Islamic social order through violence, Islamists attempting to bring about Islamic social change in their image through various peaceful means, and Muslims asking the very pragmatic question, “Whose Islam?” Of course, Islamists and militant Islamists despise one another, and varying groups have different visions of what interpretations of Islam they wish to impose mainly on other Muslims. Lewis does acknowledge this subtlety when he notes that blowing up hotels and murder are perverse forms of Islamic fun-damentalism, and that this terrorizes Mus-lims at home and non-Muslims abroad. I would better characterize Islamic funda-mentalists as militant or violent Islamists to distinguish them from spiritual funda-mentalists who practice a rigid interpreta-tion of their faith while engaging in non-violent proselytizing, or politically active Islamists who choose the ballot box to express their desires for Islamic change in their image. PROCEEDINGS r 75 www.usni.org

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