Connecting History

Connecting History logo

Milestones

Milestones logo

Hot off the Press

Book Reviews logo

History Talk

History Talk logo

Peter Mansoor

Dr. Peter Mansoor, Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret.), is the General Raymond E. Mason Jr. Chair of Military History at the Ohio State University and a frequent commentator on national security affairs in the media. He assumed this position in September 2008 after a 26 year career in the U.S. Army that culminated in his service in Iraq as the executive officer to General David Petraeus, the Commanding General of Multi-National Force-Iraq.

A 1982 distinguished graduate of the United States Military Academy, Colonel Mansoor served in a variety of command and staff positions in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East during his 26 year military career. He served on the Joint Staff as the special assistant to the Director for Strategic Plans and Policy during a period that included the Bosnian peace support operation, Operation Desert Fox, and the Kosovo conflict.

In the early 1990s Colonel Mansoor attended graduate school at the Ohio State University, after which he taught military history at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Based on his dissertation research he authored a monograph on the combat performance of U.S. Army infantry divisions in Europe during World War II. The GI Offensive in Europe: The Triumph of American Infantry Divisions, 1941-1945 was published by the University Press of Kansas on the 55th anniversary of D-Day and was awarded the Society for Military History distinguished book award and the Army Historical Society distinguished book award in 2000.

Colonel Mansoor commanded the 1st Brigade, 1st Armored Division from 2003 to 2005, including thirteen months in combat in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom – for which his brigade was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation. He has captured the essence of the experience of his brigade’s deployment and the difficulties of the U.S. war in Iraq during the crucial first year of conflict in a personal memoir, Baghdad at Sunrise: A Brigade Commander’s War in Iraq, published in September 2008 by Yale University Press to critical acclaim.

After relinquishing command, Colonel Mansoor resided at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York as a senior military fellow. He then served as the founding director of the U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where he helped to edit Field Manual 3-24, Counterinsurgency, which was used to reshape the conduct of the Iraq War. In the fall of 2006 he also served on the Joint Chiefs of Staff Council of Colonels that reexamined the strategy for the war in Iraq. Colonel Mansoor served in Iraq for fifteen months in 2007 and 2008. His latest publication is a history of that period in Surge: My Journey with General David Petraeus and the Remaking of the Iraq War (Yale University Press, 2013), which was a finalist for the inaugural Guggenheim-Lehrman Military History Prize.

Dr. Mansoor holds a Masters and PhD in military history from the Ohio State University, a Masters in Strategic Studies from the Army War College, and a Bachelor of Science degree from the United States Military Academy. His military awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, and the Bronze Star with oak leaf cluster and valor device, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion, Phi Kappa Phi, and Phi Alpha Theta.