Army History Magazine
Winter 2023 Edition
In the Winter 2023 issue of Army History, we are pleased to present two excellent articles, a quality selection of book reviews, an interesting look at some contemporary Army art, and a visit to the Army Women’s Museum.
The first article, by Center of Military History historian Nicholas Schlosser, highlights the twentieth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003. Schlosser deftly examines the causes of and lead-up to the invasion and then describes the early campaign and drive to Baghdad. After the toppling of Saddam Hussein’s regime and early conventional military success, the conflict descended into a grueling insurgency. As Schlosser points out, U.S. forces lacked sufficient boots on the ground and were ill-prepared to conduct counterinsurgency operations in the early years of the occupation. He details the eventual troop surge in 2007–2008 and the redefining of the mission for coalition forces, noting that “for the first time since the start of the Iraq War, the Bush administration aligned its goals in Iraq with the combat power necessary to achieve those objectives.” Finally, Schlosser analyzes some of the lessons learned during Operation Iraqi Freedom and examines the Army’s ability to adapt to a strategic environment that was constantly in flux.
The second article, by Army Medical Department historian Sanders Marble, looks at the history of the Army’s use of unqualified recruits. Starting with an examination of the implementation of medical and personality tests during World War I, Marble moves through each successive American conflict detailing the Army’s efforts to utilize people that would otherwise be classified as unfit for service. As personnel woes plagued the Army from the World Wars through the Vietnam War, the service increasingly sought ways to “fix” unqualified recruits or lowered its standards to accommodate those who did not pass muster. Marble ends with a brief look at the Army’s current recruiting and retention troubles and its programs to address those willing but unable to serve, including remedial physical training and education.
In the middle of this issue, readers will find an interesting Army Art Spotlight, which showcases the work of then Sfc. Juan C. Muñoz. His art captures soldiers as they participate in the 2016 Warrior Games, an event for wounded service members. Also included in this issue is a look at the Army Women’s Museum at Fort Lee, Virginia, a facility dedicated to preserving the history of women in the Army.
As I write this, Army History is facing challenges in keeping to a timely publication schedule. As many of you are aware, we fell a bit behind over the last year or so due to paper supply issues. We are working to overcome these challenges, and I hope our readers will remain patient as we strive to provide engaging content, despite these obstacles.
Bryan J. Hockensmith
Army History Magazine:
Winter 2023 Edition
In this Issue:
THE IRAQ WAR TWENTY YEARS LATER
By Nicholas J. Schlosser
BRING THEM UP TO STANDARD
HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE ON HOW THE ARMY HAS WORKED WITH UNQUALIFIED RECRUITS
By Sanders Marble
The complete collection of Army History Magazine.
Books Available for Review
Book reviews are part of CMH's professional quarterly bulletin, Army History. We invite you to self-nominate to submit a review of a book from among those listed here.