Tuesday, January 13, 2004

Fascinating report from the U.S. Army War College, author is Jeffrey Record, a Vietnam veteran, author and professor in the Department of Strategy and International Security at the U.S. Air Force's Air War College. A number of very interesting polnts. Part of Prof. Records argument is on "the importance of not quantitatively disinvesting in ground forces for the sake of a transformational vision. Indeed, under present and foreseeable circumstances the possibility of increasing ground force end-strengths should be examined. Some may detect a defence of vested interests here.

On the Iraq adventur ethe report is throrough and scathing. text includes:
>>(the action against Iraq)was a strategic error of the first order because it ignored critical differences between (sadam nd Al-Qaeda) in character, threat level, and susceptibility to U.S. deterrence and military action. The result has been an unnecessary preventive war of choice against a deterred Iraq that has created a new front in the Middle East for Islamic terrorism and diverted attention and resources away from securing the American homeland against further assault by an undeterrable al-Qaeda. The war against Iraq was not integral to the (Global War On Terrorism), but rather a detour form it. Additionally, most of the GWOT’s declared objectives, which include the destruction of al-Qaeda and other transnational terrorist organizations, the transformation of Iraq into a prosperous, stable democracy, the democratization of the rest of the autocratic Middle East, the eradication of terrorism as a means of irregular warfare, and the (forcible, if necessary) termination of WMD proliferation to real and potential enemies worldwide, are unrealistic and condemn the United States to a hopeless quest for absolute security. As such, the GWOT’s goals are also politically, fiscally, and militarily unsustainable..."
And it ends:
"The global war on terrorism as presently defined and conducted is strategically unfocused, promises much more than it can deliver, and threatens to dissipate U.S. military and other resources in an endless and hopeless search for absolute security. The United States may be able to defeat, even destroy, al-Qaeda, but it cannot rid the world of terrorism, much less evil." <<<

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