Conversations on Concrete

Marauder06

Intel Enabler
Moderator
Joined
Sep 9, 2006
Messages
9,276
Location
CONUS
#1
One of my friends wrote an article a few years back about the value of concrete (T-walls, etc.) on modern conflict. This article was a response to that assertion. I thought it was very interesting and well-written.

Cementing Failure: Shattering The “Concrete” Counterinsurgency Idol

"The concrete barriers emplaced during the “surge” dramatically slowed sectarian violence—for a time—but also cemented the sectarian and ethnic divisions that empowered Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s power grab, contributed to government corruption, and set the conditions for the rise of ISIS. These same divisions will threaten Iraq long after ISIS is defeated if a political solution that incorporates and adequately represents all sects and ethnicities is not further developed."

Cementing Failure: Shattering The "Concrete" Counterinsurgency Idol • The Havok Journal

concrete shatter.jpg
 

4859

Nobody
Verified Military
Joined
Nov 8, 2018
Messages
84
#2
T walls?

Huh. I remember they started putting those around Anaconda towards the end of my oifII deployment.

Of course all my various crapholes had were fucking hesco baskets. That we had to fill ourselves. Stupid anaconda..... with the pizza hut and taco bell... And px...

It looks like it's talking about this happening after quelling a big insurgency in 2004? Are they talking about Baton Rouge and phantom fury?

It's really weird seeing articles about/related to stuff I was a part of.
 

SpitfireV

Strike first, strike hard, no mercy!
Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
4,554
Location
New Zealand
#3
I think that's a really interesting article. I'm asking out of ignorance so please amuse me: what was happening to win over the population in Iraq? The hearts and minds part of it all. The barriers and checkpoints seem like they were effective in stopping movement of insurgents but if I were a civilian I'd be pretty resentful (on top of being invaded) of it all. Resentment is pretty unhelpful.
 

4859

Nobody
Verified Military
Joined
Nov 8, 2018
Messages
84
#4
I think that's a really interesting article. I'm asking out of ignorance so please amuse me: what was happening to win over the population in Iraq? The hearts and minds part of it all. The barriers and checkpoints seem like they were effective in stopping movement of insurgents but if I were a civilian I'd be pretty resentful (on top of being invaded) of it all. Resentment is pretty unhelpful.
Well I guess the clicks and clicks of t walls going up was after I was gone.

But on top of running our typical missions and presence patrols, we did a lot of logistics stuff for the little towns.

Brought in supplies, food, water, sometimes fielded requests. Sometimes they were really bizarre and fucking stupid though, like, no guy, we aren't going to give you concertina wire to put around your houses to keep stray dogs out. Yeah I know we have a lot of it, that's not the issue, were gonna come back and all your fucking kids are gonna be tangled up in the shit. No, no we can't give you some goats instead, any real requests?

You could tell when they were pretty happy and when resentment was rising.

When they were happy they would always come out and want to talk, tell stories about how sadaams guys cut out this guys brothers tounge, who would emphasize his brothers narrative by waggling his tounge nub. They'd tell us where they saw guys firing mortars, or planting ied's.

And when they were pissed they'd clam up, and you knew shit might be going down.
 
Top