Frank Ledwidge is a senior fellow at the Royal Air Force College and a former military intelligence officer. He spent fifteen years at the front end of British foreign policy, dealing with issues such as torture, human trafficking, and war crimes. In Kosovo, Albania, the former Soviet Union, Afghanistan, and Ethiopia, Ledwidge advised governments on international human rights protection, criminal law reform, and institution building. In Libya, he worked on stabilization during and after the conflict, focusing on justice and security. Prior to that, he was a barrister in Liverpool and throughout the North of England. He is the author of several well-reviewed books, including “Losing Small Wars” and “Investment in Blood,” and is a regular commentator on national and international print and broadcast media including the BBC, The Guardian, Al Jazeera, and BBC Radio.
More About Frank Ledwidge
Rodric Braithwaite reviews former military intelligence officer Frank Ledwidge’s book, “Losing Small Wars,” which details military failures in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“One might hope that our generals and politicians might have learned from their recent spectacularly disastrous interventions that inserting one’s metaphorical hand into such a strategic hornet’s nest and hoping for a friendly hornet might be a fool’s errand.”
“We need to get beyond appeals to false analogies: "remember Bosnia" – the Bosnian Serbs had the support of clapped-out Serbia – or "what about Rwanda" – the killers had no external support at all. We need to be absolutely clear, and clear now, what exactly we are trying to achieve and whether we can in fact achieve it.”
In discussing the Iraq war, Frank Ledwidge argues that at its best, the military was seen as an irritating foreign occupier.
“It must be time now even for senior soldiers to admit that this has become a very bad investment indeed. We ‘owe it’ to those whose lives and limbs may yet be saved to cut our losses.”
Frank Ledwidge discusses the cost of the Afghanistan war in both lives and pounds. The return? The world’s first “narco-state.”
Frank Ledwidge discusses failures in Iraq and Afghanistan and how we can learn from early thinkers, politicians and philosophers.