There was an excellent interview with Gen David Petraeus in the Sunday Times yesterday. It's well worth reading for its insights into Iraq and Afghanistan. But as I read it, one parargraph struck me:
Other phrases that leap out of the presentation Petraeus gives me are less redolent of the black arts. They contain such advice to his troops as, “Live among the people. You can’t commute to this fight”; “We cannot kill our way out of this endeavour”; and “Walk. Work dismounted. Stop by, don’t drive by. Awareness can only be gained by interacting face to face, not separated by ballistic glass”.
It's not just good advice for troops. It's equally, if not more so, useful advice for police. There are few things that have been more damaging to policing in the UK than the Panda car mentality, and the absence of the bobby on the beat; embedded, if you like, in the community.