Playing by Mogadishu Rules

Because of America's power, its enemies will always resort to deception

In the seventh grade, my children read April Morning, a coming-of-age novel by Howard Fast. It's the story of a boy, Adam Cooper, whose father is shot by the British on Lexington Common on April 19, 1775. In the chaos that follows, Adam joins a group of men who, in their everyday clothes, hiding behind walls and trees, mow down a column of Redcoats marching back from Concord.

Adam and his friends were guerrillas--though the word wasn't commonly used until some 40 years later, when Spanish peasants harried Napoleon's army in the Peninsular War. Indeed, the Columbia Encyclopedia notes that guerrilla...

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