Jerry Hendrix, late of the Naval Historical Center and now a fellow at CNAS, addresses a letter from Randy Forbes (R-VA) to CNO Admiral Greenert. Read it all on DefenseOne.com.
A response, but certainly not a rebuttal. I think the good Captain (Retired) is spot on with his assertions of the victory of the “Technical Rickovers” over the “Humanities Mahans”. And that the very lack of being able to verbalize the importance of seapower is a major factor in the dearth of strategic eloquence from our Navy leadership.
When senior admirals speak strategically, their message can be summarized as “we do what we do because we have always done what we have done. The oceans are peaceful, we created that environment, and there is no need to change the formula.”
Indeed. We are saddled with senior Navy leadership that assiduously avoids meaningful discussion about why the US Navy is building a fleet so entirely contrary to the requirements of the Cooperative Strategy. Inherent in that avoidance is the unwillingness to discuss true ship numbers, or anything approaching a proposition for a high-low mix. We have ever-smaller numbers of very large and very expensive warships which bodes poorly for forward presence. The result is an increasing tally of unmet requirements, and of capital ships being employed in very low-end missions, to the detriment of other missions more appropriate and important.
That shipbuilding is a colossal mess, with LCS being the poster-child, should be no surprise. This is the Navy, after all, that has its senior leadership in critical c0mmand positions offering up such gems as the Navy’s mission not being war at sea, and the most dangerous threat to US interests in the Pacific is not China or North Korea, but global warming. And, though less openly now, the rather curious assertion that forcible entry is no longer possible or required, that somehow the sea as strategic or operational maneuver space is an outmoded idea.
Have a read, folks, and let me know what YOU think of Hendrix’s assertion.
Filed under Around the web, budget, China, Coast Guard, Defense, history, Iran, iraq, logistics, marines, navy, Politics, Uncategorized, war
Our dear friend Boston Maggie damn near made me spit coffee this morning with her outrage at the ignorance of the contestants. She is all about the Revolutionary War, having lived most of her life amidst the historical geography of Boston. So when she gets the category of “American Revolutionaries” she is guaranteed to be all but crawling through the television screen. Of course, she calls it “Jeppidy”, but she excels at it. No surprise, with her quick wit and impressive intellect. Mixed with the educational boot camp of Catholic school.
And she is, of course, correct. Jeppidy contestants are sposta be smaaaahht. Smart enough to know George Washington wasn’t in the Navy, for cryin’ out loud.
But what happens when the category is “Civil War”? Or “Mayberry”? “Who is…. Mayor Pike”?
This is Johnny Gilbert speaking….
Former SECDEF and CIA Director Leon Panetta has released an excerpt from his memoirs, Worthy Fights, in which he lays out precisely what nearly everyone who paid any attention at all (to someone other than Chris Matthews, at least) in the last four years knew to be true. Obama cut and ran from Iraq for domestic political reasons. The WAPO, of all places, has the story.
(Michele) Flournoy argued our case, and those on our side viewed the White House as so eager to rid itself of Iraq that it was willing to withdraw rather than lock in arrangements that would preserve our influence and interests.
Barack Obama threw away a victory paid for with the blood of American soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines. He did so with the cavalier disregard of someone discarding old socks. Obama rendered the blood and sacrifice of our service men and women moot. Watching ISIS roll over Anbar Province, taking control of places whose names evoke such strong emotion in those who were there, Ramadi and Fallujah, Mosul, Tikrit, engendered in me a seething anger that has not really dissipated. Anger at Barack Hussein Obama for his dereliction of duty, and for the Useful Idiots who believed his far-fetched fabrications, and who yet refuse to place responsibility for ISIS and Iraq’s current troubles on the man whose blithe and egregious neglect of his responsibilities brought on precisely what he was warned about. It must be akin to a Vietnam Veteran watching the fall of Saigon.
Maybe it was Leon Panetta’s time in uniform (He was a United States Army Intelligence Officer) that would not allow him to ignore the despicable falsehoods perpetrated by his boss, especially when he knew the price that had been paid for the gains Obama was throwing away. Whichever, Panetta puts paid to the lies of this Administration regarding ISIS and his headlong skedaddle from Iraq. Panetta goes further.
To this day, I believe that a small U.S. troop presence in Iraq could have effectively advised the Iraqi military on how to deal with al-Qaeda’s resurgence and the sectarian violence that has engulfed the country.
Barack Obama has not told the truth about a single act or decision he has made. His is the most malignant, corrosive, dishonest, and damaging presidency in the history of our nation. The blood of the mass murders committed daily in Iraq is largely on his hands. Not that he cares. He got re-elected. Much to this great nation’s detriment.
“The man who refuses to judge, who neither agrees nor disagrees, who declares that there are no absolutes and believes that he escapes responsibility, is the man responsible for all the blood that is now spilled in the world.” – Ayn Rand
Filed under Air Force, army, Around the web, Defense, history, iraq, islam, Libya, marines, navy, obama, Politics, Syria, Uncategorized, veterans, war
An interesting and informative look at the truly herculean effort sometimes overlooked in the epic that was World War II.
Salvaging and reclaiming tanks and vehicles destroyed in combat was sometimes a disturbingly gruesome task, as the late Belton Cooper wrote so eloquently about. But the salvage effort was truly impressive, and saved the cost of manufacture, transport, and time to supply the gigantic American arsenal in Europe and the Pacific with the spare parts needed to keep fighting.
Filed under Air Force, armor, army, Around the web, Artillery, budget, Defense, guns, history, infantry, marines, navy, Uncategorized, veterans, war, weapons
This one has been around a while, but still worth a giggle.
Oh good Lordy. From our laugh-till-you-cry funny friends at The Duffel Blog.
BEIJING, China — According to Chinese news agencies, the head of a People’s Liberation Army unit of military hackers is planning to file a formal complaint today with the United States Department of Defense after a number of what were called “disturbing” conversations with “American military perverts.”
Senior Colonel Bo Wang of the People’s Glorious Facebook Battalion is one of thousands of Chinese military personnel who spend all-day attempting to infiltrate the social media profiles of US military and intelligence personnel with fake accounts.
Once a target is identified, the hacker will create a false profile, usually of an attractive member of the opposite sex, and ‘friend’ the target. Over time, a successful hacker can friend almost an entire unit and learn valuable information about military or intelligence plans.
The problem, as Colonel Wang soon found out, is that the majority of his targets are young American servicemen, most of whom only agree to friend requests because they expect sexual favors at some point.
The rest is definitely not safe for work. Or most anything else. But jee-ZUS is it funny!
Filed under Air Force, army, Around the web, China, Defense, girls, Humor, marines, navy, recruiting, Uncategorized, veterans, war, weapons
Superb article from Captain Lauren Serrano in the Marine Corps Gazette. She will undoubtedly become the target of feminists in and out of the Armed Forces as some sort of traitor to womanhood, much as Captain Kate Petronio has been. But she is right as rain. As was Captain Petronio.
Captain Serrano explores far more than the mere physical obstacles to women in the Infantry. She tells an age-old immutable truth about young warriors:
Having women in an infantry unit will disrupt the infantry’s identity, motivational tactics, and camaraderie. The average infantryman is in his late teens or early twenties. At that age, men are raging with hormones and are easily distracted by women and sex. Infantry leaders feed on the testosterone and masculinity of young men to increase morale and motivation and encourage the warrior ethos. Few jobs are as physically and emotionally demanding as the infantry, so to keep Marines focused, the infantry operates in a cult-like brotherhood. The infantry is the one place where young men are able to focus solely on being a warrior without the distraction of women or political correctness. They can fart, burp, tell raunchy jokes, walk around naked, swap sex stories, wrestle, and simply be young men together. …this is the exact kind of atmosphere that promotes unit cohesion and the brotherly bond that is invaluable. This bond is an essential element in both garrison and combat environments. Ask any 0311 what encourages him to keep training or fighting in combat when he thinks he can go no further, and he will respond, “My brothers to my right and left.” No matter how masculine a woman is, she is still female and simply does not mesh with the infantry brotherhood.
Well-stated, and spot-on. A great article, well worth the read.
Semper Fidelis, Skipper. You have the moral courage to speak an unpopular truth, for the greatest good of Corps and Country. But for more Officers, men and women, especially senior ones, to have such a backbone.
Filed under Around the web, Artillery, Defense, guns, history, infantry, marines, Politics, recruiting, Uncategorized, veterans, war, weapons