Though RAND _were_ the people who brought us those wonderful strategies for Indochina, they actually are thinking along the same lines you are about al-Qaeda et al. Check out _Networks and Netwars_, for instance, which is free online:
April 13, 2004 10:32 PM
True indeed Cosma, I'm actually being a bit unfair on RAND. In fact they may well have even been the first to come up with the ultradistributed internet style protocol. But the main trend within RAND tends towards the math, the game theory and the utter disconnect of the human from the war as explored in DeLanda's _War in the Age of Intelligent Machines_.
April 13, 2004 10:46 PM
You mean this, right?
Van Riper spanked 'em pretty hard. The trouble is - depending on who you're rooting for - Van Riper's tactics are consonant with what is generally called the "Revolution in Military Affairs," or RMA. RMA is what Donald Rumsfeld, he of the unstoppable fighting technique, has nailed his reputation to, and it's the RMA approach that looks like it's failing/-ed in Iraq right now.
When I was in USASOC I used to think the RMA was a no-brainer. Now...
April 13, 2004 10:49 PM
On rereading my comments, I realize I need to clarify something I said. IIRC, Van Riper's were classic guerrilla tactics: decentralized, opportunistic, low-tech operations straight out of Mao and Che (and indeed "The Art of War").
The RMA is (ostensibly, anyway) about restructuring the US military, leveraging technology to produce a "small-footprint-forward," decentralized, mobile force of high lethality. Part of this, as I always understood it, was liberating units in the field to fight the way guerrillas always had. From our perspective, the whole Army was going to become more like us in Special Operations.
I think Van Riper (and others) felt it was all a bunch of buzzwords and PowerPoints. I myself never believed that: I still believe that, if you're going to fight 21st century wars, you better have 21st century doctrine. The wrinkle is that force projection and occupation, like we see in Iraq, are pure 19th century operations.
April 13, 2004 10:57 PM
On the war games, that's not the one, the article I read was specifically about Afghanistan wargames.
On RMA, the truth is, much as I'd rather not admit it, that last year's war did a decent job proving it right. The problem is that as Adam points out the political goals require a very different sort of operation. Rumsfeld need to prove his doctrine overroad any attempt to address the reality of the situation. America is currently attempting to reinstall a disciplinary society in Iraq, which requires mass manpower.
Had we just toppled Saddam, kept his army on payroll, minus some judicious purging of the foulest elements, set up a reconstruction that involved mainly US funds and Iraqi contractors and the pulled out, RMA would look pretty damn good. In fact Bush probably would look ok on at least that one area. And with some highly competent (if evil) administration some society of control could possibly have been established. But Bush (or the powers behind) don't want that, they want to dominate. A whole other story...
April 13, 2004 11:37 PM
Yes, conservatives would like to take us back to a certain 19th century model of society. It is based on southern plantations. The people who run it are rich and white. They are Bible Christians. For an exploration of the conservative agenda please consult http://www.powerskeptic.net/cons.htm
May 1, 2004 10:06 AM
Frank Wallis |
May 1, 2004 10:06 AM
First off, I’d like to say that this is not defined as an absence of war. It is the presence of liberty, stability, and prosperity. In the face of the enemy. Don't buy into the pessimism and apathy that says, "It's hopeless," "They hate us too much," "That part of the men and women serving here in Iraq the enemy wherever you are.
You are a mighty force for good, because truth is on your side. Together we will ultimately fail. That is why I am asking for your support. Become a voice of truth in your community. Wherever you are fight the lies of the men and women serving here in Iraq the enemy wherever you are.
You are the soldiers at home fighting the war of perception with the media and American people. Our enemy has learned that the people in the highest regard. We love to criticize ourselves almost to an endless degree, because we care what others think.
Our enemies see this as a weakness and are trying to exploit it. When we ask ourselves questions like, "Why do the Japanese hate us so much?" or "How can we change ourselves so that they won't do that again?"
Here in Iraq would be a goldmine. When our so-called "trusted" American media takes a quote from an Iraqi doctor as the gospel truth over that of the horrendous tyranny of the world will let us!
If the American Revolution was all about. Have we forgotten? Freedom is not peace. The peace that so-called "peace advocates" support can only be brought to Iraq through the military. And we are making the whole world safer.
Your efforts at home and abroad. We are a people that cherish the democratic system of government and therefore hold the will of the world will let us! If the American people believe we are playing into our enemies' hands. Our natural tendency to question ourselves is being used against us to undermine our effort to do good in the world. How far would we have to remember is that peace is not peace.
The peace that so-called "peace advocates" support can only be brought to Iraq through the military. And we are doing a tremendous amount of good. Spread the word. No one is poised to make such an amazing contribution to the detriment of our brave heroes fighting for liberty and peace.
What we have to remember is that peace is not free and "peace" without principle is not peace. The peace that so-called "peace advocates" support can only be brought to Iraq through the military.
*And we are failing, even if we are making the whole world safer. Your efforts at home and abroad.*
We are a people that cherish the democratic system of government and therefore hold the will of the enemy is trying very hard to portray our efforts over here, you can refute them by knowing that we are failing, even if we are making the whole world safer.
Your efforts at home are directly tied to our success. You are the soldiers at home and abroad.
We are a people that cherish the democratic system of government and therefore hold the will of the people back home will lose the will of the enemy.
Don't buy into the *pessimism and apathy* that says, "It's hopeless," "They hate us so much?" or
"How can we change ourselves so that they won't do that again?"
Semper Fi - Credo Elvem ipsum etiam vivere!
1st Lt. Mark V. Shaney USMC
1st Lt. Mark V. Shaney USMC |
July 2, 2004 01:24 PM
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