The Best Defense

A farewell to Lugar: The continuing erosion of the national security middle

The defeat of Richard Lugar in the Indiana Republican Party primary for Senate last night tells me two things. First, it says that the national security centrist position continues to erode. Losing Lugar reminds me of the defeat a few years back of Rep. Ike Skelton of Missouri, the patron saint of professional military education. Second, it makes me wonder if the great Midwest is turning away from internationalism and back to its pre-World War II isolationism.

I remember someone trying to sell to me the materialistic view that the Midwest only turned away from isolationism when grain exports became a big deal after World War II, especially as we elbowed Argentina out of the European market. At the time I didn't buy it. But I wonder -- now that grain is a corporate enterprise, employing far fewer individuals, maybe Midwesterners don't see any reason to engage in the world.  

Here's another, harsher take.

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The Best Defense

10 for the year: Yet another skipper of the USS the Sullivans gets heaved overboard

He is the third skipper of the Sullivans to walk the plank in two years. Tough gig. "The relief occurred as a result of an unprofessional command climate that was contrary to good order and discipline," a Navy flak said in a statement that doesn't really illuminate the situation. 

I wonder what is going on here. Maybe fire the crew next time?

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