Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Accidental Guerrilla Reviewed

The Complex Terrain Laboratory website has has a good review of David Kilcullen's new book, The Accidental Guerrilla: Fighting Small Wars in the Midst of a Big One.

I've been reading Kilcullen's book since last week, when he addressed a class I was attending at the National Foreign Affairs Training Center. Based on that brief exposure to him, I believe the CTLAB reviewer nails this small but important element of Kilcullen's appeal to Washington circles:

As an Australian in D.C., he cuts an almost exotic swath: appealing, no doubt, to a distinctly American appreciation of rugged individualism ...

Indeed. I was delighted to see that Kilcullen was wearing jeans when he gave his presentation to our class - the only man so dressed on the entire campus, I'm sure. He was also the only presenter we had who did not use PowerPoint slides or any other visual aid. He just talked to us and answered questions, seminar-style. A total relief from the usual government official briefing. Kilcullen may be from out of town, but he looks and sounds and acts just like Americans used to (and still do in places less stuffy than Washington).

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