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Friday, May 15, 2009

A Single-Minded Focus on Dual Wars

Secretary Gates (pbuh) thankfully has moved away from "a leap ahead" and more towards "steady as you go"/"purposeful and measured" defense planning. We know what the generals think from this article (see blockquote below), but the pertinent question is what does Andrew Marshall and the DoD's Office of Net Assessment think of this?
Gates's critics, including some active duty generals and many of the senior officials that he has fired, say that his intense focus on Afghanistan and Iraq threatens to turn the vaunted U.S. military into an army of occupiers and nation-builders. "I am sure the North Koreans fear the MRAP and the Iranians are cringing in their boots about the threat from our stability forces," former Air Force secretary Michael W. Wynne, who was dismissed last year, wrote in an online column. "Our national interests are being reduced to becoming the armed custodians in two nations, Afghanistan and Iraq."
Last year, the four-star generals who run the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps formally "non-concurred" with the classified version of his National Defense Strategy, which called for "taking additional, acceptable risk" in the area of conventional war so that the military could improve its ability to fight irregular wars. Gates met with all of the chiefs to listen to their objections. He then concluded that their concerns were "not compelling," said a senior Pentagon official involved in the process, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

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