The U.S. Army’s 3rd Infantry Division (3rd ID) made history in 2003 when it completed its mission to invade Iraq and capture Baghdad in only 21 days. It was the fastest armored advance the world had ever seen, surpassing what had previously been the most impressive armored drive – that of General George Patton’s Third Army in World War II. But Pentagon officials and policymakers in Washington were not prepared for what came next.
In this book, Dr. Heather Marie Stur examines the long reach of the U.S. military, the limitations of nation building in the wake of war, and the tensions between policymakers in Washington, DC, and troops on the ground over the purpose and conduct of the invasion. Based on exclusive, extensive interviews with General Buford “Buff” Blount, the U.S. Army two-star general who led the 3rd ID, as well as other senior officers, this is an authoritative new history of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the repercussions of which still shape Iraq to the present day.