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Waging War, Planning PeaceU.S. Noncombat Operations and Major Wars$
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Aaron Rapport

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780801453588

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801453588.001.0001

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“Phase IV” and the Invasion of Iraq

“Phase IV” and the Invasion of Iraq

(p.82) Chapter 3 “Phase IV” and the Invasion of Iraq
Waging War, Planning Peace

Aaron Rapport

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines the Bush administration's planning of Phase IV—noncombat operations—of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) during the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003. Those ultimately responsible for the invasion of Iraq made many errors in judgment, errors which were reflected in the planning process for Phase IV. A focus on humanitarian issues, coupled with optimistic assumptions about political conditions in Iraq and the necessary length of military occupation, left soldiers unable to perform key tasks once the initial combat phase was complete. Instead of maintaining the flow of forces into the theater of operations to enhance coalition and civilian security, principals in the United States stopped troop deployments and undermined a military command whose postwar structure and responsibilities were already unclear.

Keywords:   Bush administration, Phase IV, Operation Iraqi Freedom, invasion of Iraq, humanitarian issues, military occupation, combat phase, civilian security

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