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on August 1, 2014
I went through the Special Forces course with Jim and knew, (hell, the whole group knew) there was something special aboout him. Jim always got it right the first time. He just "Got it". I wish the commanders who sacrificed so many of our warriors over there would have read this and took it to heart. We could have accomplished so much more meaningful and successful objectives over there. As usual the brass only care about their own rising star and not actual mission success. Jim's observations and strategies remind me a lot of Sun Tzu's "Art Of War". The brass should have paid more attention to that book as well, we would have a lot more people alive.
Jim's book is a must read, not just to get the perspective of the Afghan tribal mentalitiy, but for our own intra-social abilities and communications.
It's a great book written by a great warrior and leader. Thanks Jim. De Oppresso Liber!
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on June 8, 2014
I read Major Gant's paper when he first wrote it. Along with the study of the historical struggles in Afghanistan it made perfect sense. Finally someone who has a positive idea about how to combat the Taliban. When his plan was put into effect it had great results, until the military establishment turned on Jim. Read this then read "American Spartan." You will not be disappointed.
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on July 21, 2014
How can something so simple and straightforward be so screwed up by our military hierarchy? They simply refuse to admit that if it didn't come from them, it can't be valuable. Yes, Major Gant changed the war, but our general staffs were just too arrogant to see it really worked; and they have changed it back again. This paper should be used at the court martials of our deluded generals, especially those who call themselves Spec Ops.
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on June 26, 2014
MAJ Grant definitely gets what strategy will work in the Afghan environment. I just wish this was more widely adopted. I have run into the same results albeit in a slightly different environment. My small team worked primarily with Afghan military but found the same principles were effective. This short read was recommended by a retired Team mate and is a recommended approach. I am not sure if conventional forces can fully adopt/adapt but I am hopeful and know of many that have the right mindset. It is just unfortunate that we are winding down our presence without fully seeing the operation to its completion with the desired effect. Oh well, politicians don't seem to always be able to see the forest for the trees. It is just a leadership issue in the end. I'll stay optimistic. NOTE: This review concerns this paper only and not any of the recently reported behaviors of MAJ Grant, of which in my opinion have no bearing on this paper.
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VINE VOICEon April 29, 2016
Gant is a true American Hero for his accomplishments on and off the battlefield . Sadly our flawed political and military leadership did what the enemy could not do - destroy his accomplishments and his right to an honored place among warriors.

One Tribe At A Time is Gant's prescription for working with the realities of Afghanistan to protect and advance both American and Afghan interests. Gant recognized that we needed to work with Afghanistan's tribal culture which with the Afghan topography had made it the graveyard of great armies for 2,000 years, including that of the Russians.

Gant recognized that we needed to make the Afghan tribal culture a part of our winning strategy , not an impediment. This book is his paper on the subject, written after his first tour. It was embraced and adopted by our senior special forces leadership. When he returned to Afghanistan he found he was fighting not only the Taliban but also the Army bureaucracy where special forces are often seen as the enemy.

The book is not an adventure story but rather the presentation of the strategy and the reasoning supporting it.

The story is told in American Spartan
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on May 28, 2015
Major Jim Gant got this spot on. In dealing with the tribes in Afghanistan conventional warfare is in the end not effective.
You must build relationships with the individuals and in particular the tribal leaders from which real power in Afghanistan derives.
For those who want a small snapshot of how to operate in tribal areas in Afghanistan or any tribal society particularly in the Middle East read this.
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on June 10, 2015
This is an interesting story of one mans efforts in Afghanistan to make sure we did it right. And what he learned and how it was ignored by the command structure .
While the book is somewhat dry reading it never the less is an interesting story.
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on September 25, 2014
Review - One Tribe at a Time by Jim Gant

"One Tribe at a Time" (published October 2009) is an article by Special Forces Major Jim Gant expressing his opinion that the only way to "win" the "war" in Afghanistan is to work directly with the individual tribes. Jim Gant does not feel that working with the national level or even regional level governments will win us the war. Gant had the opportunity to work closely and intimately with one of the Pushtan Tribes (al la Lawrence of Arabia type work) and found the experience rewarding and fruitful. Gant has looked at the history of Afghanistan and found that many experts claim the only lasting power sources in Afghanistan are the tribes. This article is his opinion that we must align ourselves with the individual tribes to gain their confidence and good will to defeat the Taliban.

The bibliography is impressive. The writing is clear and well done. The intext references to such as General Petreaus (author of a brilliant book on counter insurgency) and Andrew Exum (former Army Ranger Captain with Afghan combat experience) are several and supportive. See the "Introduction" by Steven Pressfield for more. The message that insurrections are won over time by working with the local peoples is well established, but frequently for various reasons not followed in modern warfare. This article is an articulate call to use that philosophy in Afghanistan.
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on April 1, 2016
This was an excellent plan and I'm glad that Gant got to publish it before he was murdered.

It's also pretty clear to me now that the powers that be in our own country did not really want to help the Afghans.
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on January 20, 2016
This reading can be used by all FID type units when implementing in any region where tribes are running the show. Whether it is in The Stans or Africa, or with a Multi-national organization with a silo mentality. Take each tribe/silo gain influence and respect, then move to the next, while keeping your foundational tribe/silo strong and committed.
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