Denizens of Baghdad’s Green Zone, take note

Andrew Bacevich

  • Leonard Wood: Rough Rider, Surgeon, Architect of American Imperialism by Jack McCallum
    New York, 368 pp, $34.95, December 2005, ISBN 0 8147 5699 9

With the arguable exception of John J. Pershing, whose over-inflated reputation derives entirely from his brief tenure commanding US forces on the Western Front, General Leonard Wood was America’s most prominent military officer during the first quarter of the 20th century. More than any of his contemporaries, military or civilian, Wood embodied the first American empire, inaugurated by the outward thrust of 1898, reaching its zenith in 1917 with US intervention in the Great War, and then petering out in the disappointing aftermath of that struggle.

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