Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Revaluing the Yon

Michael Yon that is. Have you been reading his dispatches from Iraq? You should be. Michael Yon is a former Special Forces soldier who is now over in Iraq, on his own dime, as a journalist. He is living in Mosul and doing some of the most amazing reporting of anyone covering the war.

As milblogger Blackfive told us recently on Pundit Review Radio, Michael's reporting brings the good, the bad and the ugly, as it is happening.

Do yourself a favor and read his blog. Support his work through Paypal, if you can. Get an agenda-free, balanced perspective of what is happening in Iraq. I guarentee that you will have a different perspective of what we are doing and how well we are doing it.

What are you missing? Here is a snippet from his most recent dispatch,

The enemy in Iraq does not appear to be weakening; if anything, they are becoming smarter, more complicated and deadlier. But this does not mean they are winning; to imply that getting smarter and deadlier equates to winning, is fallacious. Most accounts of the situation in Iraq focus on enemy "successes" (if success is re-defined as annihiliation of civility), while redacting the increasing viability and strength of the Iraqi government, which clearly is outpacing the insurgency.


There is a pattern of cascades in counterguerrilla combat operations. In this kind of warfare, information drives maneuvers, and a single capture of a key person frequently cascades into a shower of raids and captures, each pregnant with the next storm.

The Libyan, like so many "jihadists" who come to Iraq itching for action in the holy war, found himself treated as exspendable bomb casing. He started confessing everything. In fact, he had no sooner sat down at the table in the detention facility here on base than he had filled three pages with detailed handwritten confessions. The Libyan had crossed the border from Syria into Iraq on foot, intent on fighting a holy war, as an infantryman engaged in direct combat with American soldiers. He did not want to be a martyr, merely a jihadist. He did not want to die in Iraq. His Iraqis "hosts" had threatened to kill him if he refused to wear and detonate the explosive vest while mingling into a crowd of Iraqi police. But the Libyan did not like that plan and was angry at the Iraqis who were trying to force a holy jihadist to become an unwilling bomb, and he was telling everything. Another cascade.

And don't miss Glen Reynolds, aka Instapundit, interview Michael Yon over at Tech Central Staton.

GR: What are you trying to accomplish with your reporting? What will the final result be? A book?

MY: I am chronicling my observations of this war over an extended period. My independence is important on many levels. I am beholden to no agency and I don't need to produce copy on a deadline. So I can write about what I am seeing and take time to do so properly. Journalists of many sorts fly through here for short times, and there are a handful of semi-permanent reporters from a few majors such as CNN and Time. Some of these are good and serious folks, but I think they are hobbled by working for agencies and are not free to roam and follow their instincts. Being completely independent allows freedom to roam the battle field from North to South, from Iran to Syria, and to describe without filters what I see. The events in Iraq are singularly critical to the futures of billions of people. Given that such incredible events are taking place, and that I am committed to being here as long as I still have unanswered questions....definitely, I will write a book.


At 7/27/2005 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post. His work is very impressive.

At 7/28/2005 8:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We've lost in Iraq, when are you neoCONS going to admit that!

At 7/28/2005 8:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another liberal rooting against America. Nice.

At 7/28/2005 8:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it's bad for Bush, and bad for America, that is a deal too many liberals are willing to accept.
They make me sick.

At 8/13/2005 9:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am looking forward to
the broadcast. I support
your committment to do what
no one else is doing.
Thanks for your excellent
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At 8/13/2005 5:31 PM, Anonymous Scotty's Mom said...

I, too, look forward to hearing Michael's interview........he has been bringing us the truth about the war and Iraq as he actually sees it......and as a Mom sitting stateside, I can't thank him enough. Keep up the good work...stay safe and keep your head down....

At 8/14/2005 10:17 AM, Anonymous Kevin said...

I've recently returned from the area that Michael reports from in Iraq. He has helped me keep in touch with the men that are still serving there and making a difference on the ground in Mosul despite the challenges! I look forward to his book already and would recommend his work to anyone that wants to really know what it's really like from day to day in Iraq. Keep up the great work!

At 8/14/2005 5:37 PM, Anonymous Joey Carroll said...

Michael is doing a great job over there. I had the pleasure of meeting him in post election Iraq and was very impressed with his desire to be out in the streets with our front line troops. Anyone can sit in a room in the Green zone and write hearsay accounts of fiction, but Michael writes what he sees. To the person that claims we've lost in Iraq, when was your last trip over there? I’m just curious as to where you get the information you base your opinion on.

At 8/14/2005 7:21 PM, Anonymous Brad J said...

Well, he gets his opinion from the most trusted news sources on the face of the earth: ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, NPR, BBC, Reuters, API, oh yeah and the LA times and NYT.

Since they all say the same thing, it MUST be true. It couldn't be that they are all a bunch of liberal-commie-terrorist supporting SOBs could it?

At 8/14/2005 9:19 PM, Anonymous Geno Beano said...

Thanks for bringing Michael Yon to us via your radio station, this is truly appreciated. Michael has a most unique gift in his writing, please keep supporting Michael. I will send him a few $$ in the AM.

At 8/14/2005 10:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mike Yon is the only "writer" with the guts and the talent to tell the Iraq story. Get Mike's SITREP's (Weekly dispaches), if you want to be truly informed. Nick

At 8/15/2005 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michael Yon is a blessing.He rides with "Deuce Four" my son's unit in Mosul(the worst part of Iraq). He braves their day to day encounter with them and reports back the truth and how our troops need to know that America is with them and apreciates that they lay thier lives on the line everyday to defend us against these terriost that have no reguard for human life. Michael Yon deserves our support to keep reporting the truth to the american people that want to know what is going on. Thank you Michael I only wish I could send more. P.S. If you see my son SPC Higgason. Give hime a hug from his Mom.

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