Gangs of Iraq

Day after day scores of bodies litter the streets of Baghdad. To staunch the violence, the US has poured billions into standing up Iraq’s security forces. FRONTLINE takes a hard look at how the four-year training effort has fared and how these forces have themselves been infiltrated by various sectarian militias. It remains to be seen if America can build a truly national Iraqi army and police in the midst of a civil war.

“Gangs of Iraq pulls back the veil on what viewers might already have gleaned from the nightly news: the coalition effort to train Iraqi forces to stand up for themselves has been largely disastrous, thanks to infiltration by sectarian militias.”
– Alex Strachan, CanWest News Service

“Gangs of Iraq, the third installment in the ”America at a Crossroads” series on PBS and airing tonight, is valuable because it shows viewers something of what American forces really face in trying to train an Iraqi army and police force. … It is to the credit of this program that viewers will better understand [officials’] anxiety [about Iraq’s security], and the difficulties facing the United States in Iraq.”
– Sreenath Sreenivasan, The New York Times

” … in harrowing detail reveals, among other things, that the administration’s goal of handing over the reins of war and peacekeeping to Iraqi soldiers and police officers is elusive at best.”
– Alessandra Stanley, The New York Times

“… on flighty matters like international terrorism … PBS’ long-running ‘Frontline’ series remains the gold standard … ”
– Eric Mink, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“… portray[s] the seldom-seen life of everyday Iraqis … ”
– Joe Garofoli, San Francisco Chronicle