Archived material is restricted to Rantburg regulars and members. If you need access email fred.pruitt=at=gmail.com with your nick to be added to the members list. There is no charge to join Rantburg as a member.
#1 An exhausted army is prone to disasters, and this one has surely been pushed to the limit.
This article presents what is surely a one-sided and not very well proven point of view.
I could just as easily write an article about how experienced and therefore deadly the American military has become through constant practice and need to think about tactics and present one or two tidbits that got me to that conclusion.
Confirmation bias is an ugly thing.
Posted by no mo uro 2012-03-18 06:29||
#2 This is just the Left recycling its Vietnam War stereotypes of the crazed veterans coming home from Vietnam and butchering civilians both abroad and back home.
Posted by Shieldwolf 2012-03-18 06:54||
#3 [CBC] Bad things happen when a nation tries to fight too many wars with too few troops. The blunt fact about the U.S. army and Marines -- whose difficulties have become the stuff of headlines -- is that they are exhausted and at their wits' end.
Armies wear out rapidly under the unique stress of combat, and for a decade now U.S. ground troops have been rotated through three, four and five combat tours lasting up to a year in each case (15 months at the height of Iraq fighting).
Not surprising that the CBC has beclowned themselves: The blunt fact is that "too many wars with too few troops" is not the same as "two wars fought over a decade. Another proof that liberals have no functional ability to discern equality, and thus are unfit to be judges and legislators.
But what is pertinent to the point is that Americans (not just american soldiers) have had experience with this sort of 360/365 stress before, during western expansion into regions dominated by tribal peoples not unlike those in Afghanistan and Iraq when it came to combat scruples. The Jacksonian way of war, documented by Walter Russel Mead and Victor Davis Hanson, that advocates high intensity, short duration, "total war" combat operations oriented toward achieving "total victory" (as opposed to "partial" or "local" victory), overcomes the problems cited by the CBC.
Of course the CBC, and their fellow travelers, would scream to high heaven if we actually DID that, but I somehow doubt that they actually have the good health and condition of American troops, much less Americans as a whole, in heart.
Posted by Ptah 2012-03-18 09:05||
#4 Oh, and nothing beats relieving the stress of combat on US ground troops than an ARCLIGHT strike.
If the miilitary has forgotten how to do those, I know we have a couple of Rantburg regulars who can come out of retirement to show them how it's done.
At "Cost Plus", it'd be cheaper than two assembly line jobs at Solyndra, and have a better Return On Investment to boot.
Posted by Ptah 2012-03-18 09:10||
#5 It's also the cost of a PC military. For thousands of years grunts have had means to let off the stress. Most of those have been outlawed, prohibited, and banished in the name of correctness under the guise of discipline. We've thrown out our social rituals because they're too damn ancient. Instead we substitute analysis, psychotropic drugs, group therapy as modern alternatives. There are consequences. However, I'll assure you that like teaching professionals, the powers to be will not examine what used to provide some results before because, being professionals, they know better and will drive on with their existing programs. We'll have a military as effective as our education system.
Posted by Procopius2k 2012-03-18 09:46||
#6 It's interesting that the author, writing from outside the US, doesn't suggest that American troops wouldn't be pulling four of five tours if America's allies would order their troops to march to the sound of the guns instead of the dining hall. (And I don't mean Canada or Britain --they've done their share.) Let's re-write one of the author's sentences a bit:
"To me it has always seemed shocking that Washington's Brussels' current political class have been so careless in allowing their American military units to wear down like this. Perhaps because the generals constant "can do" mantra tends to blot out the the Euros could care less about the reality of dead Americans."
Posted by Matt 2012-03-18 11:54||
#7 Yah, Vietnam was the last winless war. We thought.
Posted by Boss Hupusorong4750 2012-03-18 12:52||
#8 Not having served in either Iraq or Afghanistan, I can't attack or confirm this story, although I'm forwarding it to my peeps that have been there recently.
But having seen Restrepo, that documentary seems to have summed up Patient Zero scenario for a lot of the behaviors/problems listed in this article. World War II, as bad as it was, lasted half as long, and there were exit points to look at - Berlin and Toyko.
Is that sexual assault number even close to accurate? If so, that's mind boggling.
Posted by Mizzou Mafia 2012-03-18 13:44||
#9 No mo uro makes the point. Also, consider a variation on Yamamoto's observation about American capability.
Nobody even mentions the Germans and Japanese anymore.
Posted by Halliburton - Mysterious Conspiracy Division 2012-03-18 16:15||
#10 Moral to the material, ladies & gents, moral to the material.
Posted by g(r)omgoru 2012-03-18 16:31||
#11 A study of more than 1,000 prisoners by the group Veterans in Prison put the figure at 9.1%, while Home Office research carried out between 2001 and 2003 concluded that 5% of the prison population were veterans.