Yesterday, in an e-mail conversation with a blogger friend, I asked him to read an article and give me his opinion. He agreed and asked to read something give him my opinion. When I finished reading what he had linked, I was literally shaking with anger. What my friend linked was an internal Army memorandum from a battle tested Tactical Commander to the Secretary of the Army. The subject of the August 20, 2010 memorandum was the Army’s Open Door policy. In the Commander’s opening paragraph, he explains that he is writing to the Secretary because efforts to resolve the problems he had witnessed in the war in Afghanistan through the chain of command had not borne fruit.
The Commander’s memorandum is very long or I would post it in its entirety here. I urge you to bookmark it and read every last word when you can and then pass it to friends and family. If this Commander’s assessment is correct, every American needs to be aware of it and demand from their elected officials in Washington that something be done to correct the problems the Commander sees.
This post could easily run 2000 words or more. The pdf file will not allow me to cut and paste so I will try to faithfully reproduce a few of the things the Commander had to say to the Secretary.
2 The main problem in the war today is not one of enemy capability; it is a lack of professional competence. We have developed a cadre of senior leaders so informed by the historically inaccurate idea that a population can be a center of gravity that we are unwilling to conduct operations that reflect sound military art and science. Consequently, American troops are needlessly exposed to enemy attack, suffer unnecessary casualties, can not secure or control the indigenous population, and are not allowed to deny freedom of movement or maneuver to the Taliban. While we remain a hard-working dedicated military force with substantial potential, history will show that we have been poorly led in the field.
In the Commander’s paragraph No. 3, he outlines his credentials for having standing to point out these problems in Afghanistan. Afghanistan was his third combat campaign. he gives a brief summary of his War College studies and studies of the Army’s historyof combat tactics. He said: “It is difficult to find a time in our Army’s history in which the colonel and general officer ranks are maned by so many officers with such little small unit combat maneuver experience. He goes on to say
The COIN doctrine that does exist consist of musings from amateurs, contractors, plagiarized journal articles, etc. It is not relevent because it does not reflect the studies body pf best practice—the concepts it promotes, in fact, contribute to needless American casualties.
COIN has become such a restrictive dogma that it can not be questioned; any professional discussion of its strengths and weaknesses is discouraged. It has reached such a crisis that those who employ other Army doctrinal concepts, do so at their own professional peril because they will be subject to censure for not adhering to COIN. This has created a dysfunctional and toxic leadership environment throughout our Army which has resulted in poor organization, unrealistic training, and indecisive battlefield performance.
I have shared only a very small part of the Commander’s concerns. In a later part of his memorandum he tells how the other NATO commanders recognize the US Army’s short comings and when a British Commander calls a strategy meeting, the Americans are asked to sit in the back of the room and are affectively ignored.
Every time I read the words “needless casualties” my blood began to boil. If the Commander’s assessment of our Army’s battlefield leadership is accurate, what does it say about our other military branches? After stewing over what the Commander wrote back in 2010, I recalled an American Thinker article that I saved back in September as a possible subject for a post. The article had to do with a small insurgent group who had penetrated the perimeter of one of our major air bases in Afghanistan and inflicted serious damage on a number of our aircraft. The author was upset that here was, for all practical purposes, a news blackout on how this small force was able to inflict so much damage. Would i be wrong to link this event to what the Commander was talking about?
Yesterday, the Always On Watch blog linked an article from the Fix Bayonets blog. The linked article had to do with some despicable behavior by General Dempsey, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. Am I wrong to connect the Generals behavior to what the Commander described two years ago?
How do such people reach the highest ranks of our military? This didn’t all happen on Obama’s watch. I don’t doubt for a moment that our troops are well-trained and that our special forces units are the best in the world. But, what about our officers? What are our best and brightest being taught in West Point, Annapolis, and Colorado Springs? Is our vaunted military becoming the laughing-stock of other NATO commanders? Are our troops suffering “needless casualties” because our officer are under-trained and are practicing political correctness on the battlefield? Am I reading too much into the words of one Commander’s assessment of the conduct of the war in Afghanistan? For some reason, I don’t think so.
Well, now you know what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?
30 thoughts on “Is The Greatest Military The World Has Ever Known Being Led By Politically Correct and Under Trained Officers?”
After listening to the entire House hearing yesterday on the death of our ambassador, and hearing the gross incompetence of our State dept, one can only come to the conclusion that we are indeed lost. Whether military or so called civil servants who spend their time in the state dept., there is no competent leadership.
Incompetence and a cover up! This is not going away. What we see in Obama’s foreign policy is a microcosim of what has happened to our Pentagon. Something has to change and soon!
The rot of political correctness is unfortunately everywhere. Hence the Ft. Hood shootings.
Excellent point, MI.
How do such people reach the highest ranks? By kissing the asses of their political masters, and therein lies the problem.
Had we thrown all the modern-day bullshit over the side and taken a page from Grant and Sherman, we’d have been out of there years ago. We would not have “conquered” them, but they would be sorry as hell they allowed people to plan attacks on us form their soil.
I wonder if it is possible to reverse the tide?
Department of Defense Secretary Forrestal as thrown out of his window after being hospitalized for being crazy. Silverfiddle is correct that those in command are there for political reasons. War is an extremely profitable exercise for the banks. Recall the banks effectively own our country. They own the media and all the “experts” from which the PC talk originated. PC talk is a fancy form of self-censorship and newspeak to control mass opinion. These upper command military types are in thrall to the machine who put the PC stuff together, so they play along. They also play along to hold down those geopolitical pivots that are necessary for world domination.
The name of the game is to morph our military into the world UN military as outlined in the 1963 State Department Memo 7727. All Hail Army Spc. Michael New who refused to put on the UN Blue 17 years ago!
Yes! All hail Spc Michael New!
The problem seems to stem as much from our political desicions to cede control to NATO, and the Brits in particular. I don’t have a clue what COIN is other than some sort of counter-insurgency strategy, or collection of strategies. If we are going to have troops in Afghanistan, we must have control of all of our assets in Afghanistan. That is the source of a lot of the complaints of the author of the document.
It goes back to you viewpoint that we should kick ass, and take names, later. The rules of engagement do no favor our soldiers.
COIN and the Rules of Engagement contained in COIN were a major beef of the Commander. But, he also questioned the preparedness of many of our officers. What is hurting our efforts in Afghanistan is seen also Obama¡s approach to the Muslim nations and is responsible for the death of our Ambassador and threes others. It makes me sick!
The whole top military command structure is full of “wet” generals, starting with General Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who we exposed before as being anti-Israeli and pro-Obama politically. Our mini-piece was called, “The Political General Who Denounces Politics”, and discusses his intervention to try and muzzle the retired navy seals that criticized the use of the Osama Bin Laden killing for political purposes.
Tying the hands of our brave men and women in the field of combat is unexcusable!
Last night on Hannity, Sean interviewed the parents of one of the Seal Team 6 members who killed Bin Laden, and was then subsequently killed in a helicopter landing in a fire fight. Aside from talking about the danger that our perpetual candidate CINC put not only the Seal Team in, but also their families as he ran around spiking the football with the administration also giving too much detail about the operation, the father talked about the rules of engagement. Apparently, this helicopter carrying special operators landing in a firefight was NOT ALLOWED to fire on the tower from which the RPG eventually got launched that killed everyone on board because there might be some civilians around… just hanging out, eating popcorn and watching the firefight, one presumes.
I was young at the time, but wasn’t this one of the problems with Vietnam? Politically dictated rules of engagement hamstringing our guys, and getting them killed?
To hear these parents talk was heart wrenching. It’s like we are sending our best, most patriotic, bravest men into battle with one wrist handcuffed to one leg, making them hop around and fumble with their weapons, when uncuffing them would not only protect them, but be extremely bad news for the enemy. Does anyone think that the Taliban and al Queda doesn’t understand our rules of engagement and take advantage of it as they attack our troops?
We have to remember that we’re fighting people with no honor at all. They won’t put on a uniform and fight us in the open. They hide behind women and children. They pretend they’re honorable soldiers and then turn their weapons on the people training them. They pretend they are the innocent people, then whip out their weapons. They know we can’t possibly know the difference until its too late. They make hay when we make mistakes, or (Palestinian style) they act as if we’ve made mistakes when we haven’t, knowing that our media will lap up any scandal involving the military.
It was a problem in Vietnam, Pat. Two my friends that maade it back seperately told me they owed their lives to their South Korean commrads who were not bound by any Rules of Engagement.
If what this commander said is true, why is there no Congressional investiftions going on? I am glad my son got out of the service after nine years.
Jim, you wrote somewhere(?), concerning Obama’s foreign policy in the middle East, “Obama and Hillary are either fools or they have some other evil plan in the works.”
The most interesting answer would be to say, “both”. But I am long passed the popular believe that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are two smart people – wrong headed but smart. I firmly believe now that both, Hillary and Barack, are not very smart, they are not highly educated in history and economics and that the little they have read in those two subjects were highly slanted works, and that, most of all, they are not wise. When you control what they control, you can do without the first elements, but you cannot do without wisdom.
I agree, John, that they are not the brightest of people. But, they are ideologs and that makes them dangerous.
Such is the problem of applying a nation building Counter Insurgency to what should have been a Counter Terrorism campaign. We lost the fight in Afghanistan in 2002, and senior Army leadership has fallen under the COIN-dinista spell since then.
Thanks for coming by, CI. As I responded to another commentor, why isn’t someone in Congress raising hell about this? “Needless Casualties” is unacceptable!
Sadly, I believe it continues due to politics. Both parties have political skin in the game. They’ll demonize each other just enough to score points, but not so badly that it calls into question the decisions and strategies concocted on their watch. The PR angle is critical for re-election. Our campaign against the Taliban has morphed into our original assault on al Qaeda…..so that talk of scaling back the former to concentrate on the latter is construed by many to be ‘defeatism’, ‘appeasement’ or outright surrender. No elected official wants to be seen as soft on national security, even in the face of issues that don’t directly affect our national security.
And those in uniform [and contractors] pay the price. Full disclosure – 22 years in uniform and 4 as a DoD contractor, has left me a cynical SOB.
“…has left me a cynical SOB.”
Understandable. My eldest son got out after nine years. I’m glad he did. Playing politics with lives is just plain wrong!
I guess this is what you get when you have a idiot in chief who thinks a great military achievement is getting homosexuals to openly serve in the military. Eventually the ignorance and stupidity will trickle down the ranks.
Sad but true, MK.
Shared on my facebook page, Jim. I’ve seen this coming gradually…and since Vietnam. Undeclared wars, political correctness, keeping our soldiers from protecting themselves and innocents, putting a Druid worship center at the Air Force Academy, not allowing Chaplains to pray in Jesus’ name, calling the Islamic shooting in Texas a “workplace incident,” sending our military on “humanitarian” missions instead of keeping them ready for combat, our AF fleet of planes is average 30 years old, on and on. Now this “sequestration” defunding of our military under Obama. We disarm them and then end up with thousands at Walter Reed.
Straight out of the Barton list. Is there a problem with accommodating the religious needs of service members who are not Christian?
Obama has plenty to be blamed for…there’s really no need to simply invent things.
It is trahic. The words “needless casualties” should never have to appear in a commander’s letter or report.
I have passed along this information to a couple of my military friends. I hope that they take their blood pressure medication before reading your post!
AOW, I would be interested in hearing what their response was.
“Is The Greatest Military The World Has Ever Known Being Led By Politically Correct and Under Trained Officers?”
With a few exceptions, yes.
Cheryl Pass is right, this has been coming for a long time. It’s a brave new military. Shoot, the Army’s official stance is that climate change is a security threat. All branches are soaked in political correctness. Nidal Hisan is an example of what this kind of leadership can get us.
I may comment more on this later, but it’s so late tonight. I appreciate your outrage at this information. It’s kinda devastating sometimes, to realize how many have died for maybe nothing, as far as national security or any proper mission is concerned. Did you see this recent article?
Anytime you want your blood boiling again, just scroll down all the article titles at Big Peace.
Was this not similar in Viet Nam? And the ability for the locals to sleep at night should not be a concern to our military. The lives and safety of our soldiers should be the main concern and that they come back alive and uninjured. The leadership is a grave concern and it start with the Whitehouse, Incompetence Central.
Thank you for your comment, lauren. Our dedicated soldiers deserve better leaders, don’t they?