Saturday, November 18, 2006

Imperial Grunts

Amid the usual management books, I've been reading Robert D. Kaplan's Imperial Grunts: The American Military on the Ground.
Fascinating stuff. Kaplan bounces aound the globe, meeting with Green Berets, Rangers, and Marines in Yemen, Columbia, Mongolia, The Philippines, Afghanistan, North Carolina, East Africa, and Iraq.

An excerpt:

Arauca (Columbia) boasted a strategic location abutting Venezuela, where the radical-populist (yet democratically elected) president, the ex-army general Hugo Chavez, was providing Columbian guerrillas with rear bases. Control of Arauca gave the Columbian guerrillas a corridor for exporting narcotics to Venezuela, in exchange for weapons and munitions that, in turn, were smuggled into the region by Arab gangs based in the Venezuelan port of Maracaibo. There were credible reports that Hamas and Hezbollah had established havens on the Venezuelan island of Margarita near Caracas. Venezuelan authorities were providing thousands of local identity cards to Syrians, Egyptians, and Pakistanis.

No comments: