Iraq: What's Next?
Dr. Dov S. Zakheim is a vice president of Booz Allen Hamilton where he is a leader in the firm’s global defense business, working with U.S. Combatant Commanders and allied and coalition ministries of defense worldwide.
Former United States government official Dov Zakheim was the Undersecretary of Defense and Comptroller from 2001-2004 in the George W. Bush administration, and was a foreign policy advisor to that administration during the 2000 election campaign. From 1985-1987, during the Regan administration, Zakheim was Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Planning and Resources. An Orthodox Jew, he helped to end the IAI Lavi Israeli fighter program. Previous to his work with the Bush administration, from 1987-2001, Zakheim served as a consultant to the Office of the Secretary of Defense and sat on a number of Defense Department panels, including the Task Force on Defense Reform, in 1997, and the Board of Visitors of Overseas Regional Centers, from 1998-2001. During those years he was also CEO of SPC International, a subsidiary of System Planning Corporation. Zakheim is on the editorial board of The National Interest Journal and has published a multitude of articles and monographs on defense issues. Zakheim earned his BA in government from Columbia University in 1970 and his PhD in economics and politics from St. Antony's College, Oxford University. He was an Adjunct Scholar at the Heritage Foundation, and an adjunct professor at the National War College, Yeshiva University, Columbia University and Trinity College, where he was also Presidential Scholar. He has been a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and is currently a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, and the United States Naval Institute. Zakheim has received many awards for government and community service, including the Department of Defense Distinguished Public Service Medal, its highest civilian award.
Dov Zakheim: Well obviously Iraq is very much on my mind. It’s on my mind not just because I was there in the Pentagon when we went in, but more important because there’s a real disconnect between the strategic clock on the ground in Iraq and the strategic clock at home. And frankly the third strategic clock, which is with our allies and the rest of the world. Far too often, we tend to think of only one of those. But will happen on the ground in Iraq. You can’t win if you can’t win at home. And I don’t think you can win if you operate all by yourself either. That’s where Afghanistan is a much better model where the U.N. was in there from the start, and other countries were in there from the start. Once there’s that disconnect, then you run the risk of making the wrong decision, because you realize the clocks are out of sync. I think the biggest risk you run over the next year is pulling out. Pulling out will be a disaster. Pulling out would fulfill all the worst prophecies that people made about the Middle East. But you know, if public opinion remains as strongly opposed, or even more strongly opposed to Iraq than it is today, that could lead to some kind of really bad mistake.
Recorded on: 7/2/2007 at The Aspen Ideas Festival
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