Reporter Jonathan Steele Examines Missteps in Iraq In Defeat, reporter Jonathan Steele contends that the Bush administration, by failing to balance military strategy with cultural sensitivities, was fighting an unwinnable battle from the day it invaded Iraq.

Reporter Jonathan Steele Examines Missteps in Iraq

Jonathan Steele Reads from 'Defeat'

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Jonathan Steele is a senior foreign correspondent for The Guardian. He has won several awards for his work, including being named International Reporter of the Year twice at the British Press Awards. Since 2003, he has completed eight assignments in Iraq, and he continues to cover Iraq, Darfur and Afghanistan. Courtesy Counterpoint Press hide caption

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Courtesy Counterpoint Press

Discussion Highlights

Comparing Iraq to Germany and Japan Was an Early Mistake

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Democrats Should Not Be Afraid of the Word 'Defeat'

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Winston Churchill's Lack of Understanding of Iraq

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Book Tour is a Web feature and podcast. Each week, we present leading authors of fiction and nonfiction as they read from and discuss their work.

Five years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, the conflict continues, and many Americans are distressed by the war's rising human and financial costs. Roughly 155,000 American troops remain on the ground in Iraq, and military analysts say a large U.S. presence is likely for many more years.

In the new book Defeat: Why America and Britain Lost Iraq, Jonathan Steele dissects the war and explains how it could have been fought — and planned — more successfully.

Steele, a senior foreign correspondent for The Guardian, contends that the Bush and Blair administrations, by failing to balance military strategy with cultural sensitivities, were fighting an unwinnable battle from Day One. He puts the blame on a long history of Western imperialism in the Middle East, in addition to an ideology that he says was informed by abstract neoconservative theory rather than geopolitical realities.

Between 2003 and 2006, Steele completed eight reporting trips to Iraq. He draws from the experiences and voices of Iraqi sources to offer a fresh critique.

This reading of Defeat took place in April 2008 at the Politics and Prose bookstore in Washington, D.C.

Defeat
By Jonathan Steele

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