some minor exceptions your research is 95 percent spot on.
a group of the long term CENTCOM folks of which I am now one -- that have
observed the failures of our senior leadership and came to the same conclusion
as you. That being the General Officer/Flag Officer Corps of the DoD is
for the most part weak, unopposed and sheltered.
If I had
a dollar for every time someone in this HQ has said: "Can you imagine if George
Patton had received this order?" or "Can you imagine U.S. Grant or R.E. Lee ever
thinking so bizarrely about a situation."
us have further concluded that we won WWII because of Dresden and Hiroshima and
Nagasaki. Innocent people will die in war. Sad but true. Somehow we've developed this "war can be clean" mentality, because of our
advanced weapons I suppose. This is very unhealthy I think. War is
ugly and should truly be a last resort because of this fact. When Tommy
Franks started showing the laser guided Youtube style videos of rounds going
into bedroom windows in 2003, "we can choose which of the 4 panes of glass you
want the missile to enter thru" a lot of us with Infantry experience were
troubled. When missiles with computers inside them didn't win the war --
the U.S. Army was not prepared for what it faced in the streets of Baghdad.
morning after the statue of Suddam came down -- Tommy was briefing on split
screen the president, Paul Wolfowitz, and Sec Powell (I was in the room).
Tommy briefed the statue bit and praised the 3rd ID -- he then
said "Mr. President, I'm ready to turn the keys over" and after a slightly
uncomfortable laugh from the President there followed an even more
uncomfortable silent pause. You see, there was no one to turn the keys
over to. The State
Department had no plan and the famous "Phase IV" of the CENTCOM plan was a 1
pager (the other 3 phases -- deploy, invade, kill were in the 20 page each ball
In fairness to Tommy
-- he did exactly what the U.S. Army trained him to do -- he deployed planes and
tanks and took ground. He had zero training in anything else. That
is why the invasion by 3rd ID went relatively without a hitch. The U.S. Army had practiced the drive from Kuwait to Baghdad thousands of times
at the National Training Center (NTC), Ft. Irwin over the previous 10