In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 22, 2005 / 13 Nisan, 5765

What Garbage Workers and Make-Believe Iraqis Taught Our Military

By Max Boot

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Despite this week's bad news, things have gotten better in Iraq. A lot of the reason has to do with the success of the Jan. 30 election and the growing competence of Iraqi security forces. But give credit where it's due: The U.S. military has stepped up its game. When the insurgency began in the summer of 2003, the U.S. armed forces were caught off guard. Most soldiers and Marines had little training for, or interest in, nation-building and counterinsurgency operations. But the U.S. military has proved that it adapts to unexpected events, learns from its mistakes and passes those lessons along.

Last week at Ft. Hood in Texas, on a tour of military bases organized by the Council on Foreign Relations, I heard a colonel in the 1st Cavalry Division explain one training approach. The 1st Cavalry, which garrisoned Baghdad from March 2004 to March 2005, is an armored force designed to fight other tank armies. In order to figure out how to run a modern metropolis, officers spent time with Austin city officials before they deployed. They also rode along with electrical, water, sewage and garbage workers. Applying what they learned, the 1st Cavalry troops discovered that the more they improved municipal service in Baghdad, the less likely residents were to cooperate with insurgents. Thanks to their efforts, the Iraqi capital is significantly more peaceful today than it was a year ago.

One of the biggest lessons U.S. forces have learned in Iraq is the need to guard convoys against ambushes. There are no safe rear areas; every Humvee is on the front lines every time it goes "outside the wire." Yet until recently, most soldiers in trucks and Humvees did not train together for combat as intensively as tank crews did.

To address the shortfall, in the fall of 2003 the Army created the convoy skills trainer. Located in a Ft. Hood warehouse, the trainer consists of four plywood boxes rigged up like Humvees. Soldiers sit inside watching virtual-reality screens that give them the illusion that they're driving through Iraq, fighting off guerrilla attacks. Every hit and miss is registered on giant video walls for later analysis. (My performance proved that I'm more adept with metaphors than an M-16.)

A much bigger and more elaborate real-world simulation has been created at the Joint Readiness Training Center, which sprawls over 106,000 wooded acres at Ft. Polk in Louisiana. There are 18 "urban areas" here that represent Iraq, complete with mosques and Arabic street signs. They are populated by more than 1,200 role players, including hundreds of Iraqi Americans, who play civilians, and costumed U.S. soldiers as insurgents. Like their real-life counterparts, "guerrillas" plant IEDs (improvised explosive devices) and fire RPGs (rocket-propelled grenades). Explosions are simulated with smoke generators, pyrotechnics and other Hollywood-style special effects. Hits are registered on laser harnesses worn by participants and recorded in a computerized command post. All the action is caught by 1,300 video cameras.

Army brigades about to be sent to Iraq come here to face not only simulated enemy fire but also demonstrations by unhappy civilians and ambush interviews by pesky reporters. Visiting officers analyze media coverage from newspapers produced at the center. If U.S. troops needlessly kill civilians, the media and villagers turn hostile; if they stop a cholera outbreak, reactions are friendlier.

Scenarios are adjusted based on what's going on in Iraq; the center has observers there who report on the latest insurgent tactics. And, just as in Iraq, the actions taken by U.S. troops have ambiguous results. Visiting units are not scored as in traditional war games. Instead, commanders discuss what they did right and what they did wrong with a corps of experienced umpires.

"We're fighting a thinking, adaptive enemy," one of the trainers told us. Even amid some recent setbacks, the increasing stability in Iraq shows that the American military is capable of matching that learning curve.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

The Savage Wars of Peace: Small Wars and the Rise of American Power  

The book was selected as one of the best books of 2002 by The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times and The Christian Science Monitor. It also won the 2003 General Wallace M. Greene Jr. Award, given annually by the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation for the best nonfiction book pertaining to Marine Corps history. Sales help fund JWR.

Max Boot is Olin Senior Fellow in National Security Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. He is also a contributing editor to The Weekly Standard and a weekly columnist for the Los Angeles Times. To comment, please click here.

04/15/05: What Do We Do About Darfur?
04/08/05: The friend we betrayed
04/01/05: The Iraq War's Outsourcing Snafu
03/25/05: Why neither party is serious about solving the growing gas crisis

© 2005, Los Angeles Times. Distributed by Los Angeles Times Syndicate