They Will Have to Die Now: Mosul and the Fall of the Caliphate by James Verini

Since we presume to be a democracy, perhaps we ought to require all high-school students to read at least one book about a country the United States has trashed. There are plenty to choose from—countries and books.

I haven’t read all of those written about Iraq, but I recommend this one, which covers the most recent of our grand foreign-policy misadventures. In order to fully appreciate the folly of American intentions in 2003, high schoolers today would have to be told about the fantasy of jubilant Iraqi citizens blowing kisses and strewing petals in the path of U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Division tanks as they rolled triumphantly into Baghdad after overthrowing dictator Saddam Hussein. They should also watch President George W. Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” speech on the deck of the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln.