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A Marine Corps Adviser Inside the Iraqi Army

Wesley R. Gray

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Description

In 2006, 1st Lt. Wesley Gray was deployed as a U.S. Marine Corps military adviser to an Iraqi Army battalion in the Haditha Triad. For 210 days, he lived and fought beside Iraqi soldiers in the most dangerous and austere province of western Iraq. Al-Anbar was filled with an insurgent population traumatized by a recent massacre of twenty-four men, women, and children shot at close range by U.S. Marines in retaliation for the death of one of their comrades in a roadside bombing. Despite the high tensions created by the shootings, Gray was able to form a bond with the Iraqis because he had an edge that very few U.S. service members possess -the ability to communicate in Iraqi Arabic. His language skills and his understanding of the culture led the Iraqi soldiers to call him a brother and fondly name him Jamal. By the end of his tour he was a legend within the Iraqi Army. Gray draws on the brutally honest and detailed record he kept during his tour, including extensive interviews with Iraqi soldiers and citizens. He offers a comprehensive portrait of the struggles of the Iraqi people to make their country a nation once again and includes a compelling report on the status and prospects of the U.S. government's strategy for success in Iraq.

Publishers Weekly Review

Mar 30, 2009 – In this illuminating memoir, Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Gray recounts his eight-month tour as part of a Military Transition Team, working as an advisor to the Iraqi Army on location. Gray was fluent in Arabic prior to deployment, giving him enormous insight into the culture and worldview of Iraqis as citizens and soldiers and obvious advantages over colleagues (and competing memoirists) relying on translantors On many occasions, Gray encounters an Insh' Allah philosophy, a mantra of "If God wills it" or "God willing" can strike Americans as lazy or unmotivated. Among other startling lessons, Gray discovered that loyalty to tribe supersedes duty to the state; the Iraqi Army soldiers he was training were spending their monthly leave in the ranks of local tribal militias. Gray details the cultural nuances and interpersonal relationships of occupied Iraq with such care and clarity, it's a must-read for anyone interested in the the reconstruction, especially those set to deploy. 20 b&w photos.
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  • $19.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Military
  • Published: Aug 10, 2013
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press
  • Seller: The Perseus Books Group, LLC
  • Print Length: 272 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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