Saturday, January 07, 2012

Caption Contest!


If there was a picture that needed a caption contest, this would be it; the inquisitive & slightly patronizing professor, the grinning politician, and the badda55 with the “soon” look on his face.

As I was posting this though, I thought that some of you would like the opportunity to discuss something that should be more than just a cheeky Caption Contest.

I’ll give it a start.

First of all; no one, especially on the Front Porch, should be in any way shocked about the depth of the cuts that are coming. We have been discussing for years it was on the way; the question was only the degree and emphasis. The reasons are self-evident:

1. Political: the politicians have structured the budget such that the area easiest to cut to any degree is DoD. They are cutting DoD because it is easy and they can say they are doing something. They are not serious about debt reduction though – if they were you would see cuts everywhere; and you won’t. Additionally, no one is going to surround a Congressman’s car and pound on his hood, or march on Washington (pun intended) because the budget for the military is being cut.

This is political in two ways; it feeds the blood-lust of the President’s supporters on the Left to punish the military by taking away money (though there is blowback already for not being enough), and it gives him talking points to the right about being concerned about the budget. There is no downside here for the President – especially as if you read the document there is a lot there that is good. Just watch the money.


2. President Obama: The Commander in Chief comes from the far-Left of the Democrat Party. If you need more help understanding what he is doing at Defense, review “Scorpion and Frog.” He has a long and clear record of opposing both the conduct and the ability of the USA to conduct extended ground combat overseas. He has a long record of wanting a much smaller military, he is just being consistent; elections have consequences. I do not subscribe to the line of thought that this is done with malice. The President just sees things differently than some when it comes to the place of the military in the American project. It is not an unusual perspective, it has a lineage that goes back to the founding of this nation. Though left of center, his D&G is well within a standard deviation of the norm when it comes to our history.

3. Operational: We have left the field in IRQ and soon will in AFG. A draw-down of land forces, like we saw a build-up when combat expanded, is natural.

What about his strategy? Well, you can read it here.

The actual bucket-o-money that goes to DoD will be determined by Congress, so we will just have to watch things as they develop. What is important is the Direction & Guidance that comes from the Commander in Chief. From that you will see planning revised and priorities set, as it should be.

In that light, let’s look at it. There is actually a lot here to like, at least for me. Perfect? No. What I would produce? No. Better than expected? Let's see. Some pull quotes:
“As we end today’s wars and reshape our Armed Forces, we will ensure that our military is agile, flexible, and ready for the full range of contingencies. In particular, we will continue to invest in the capabilities critical to future success, including intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; counterterrorism; countering weapons of mass destruction; operating in anti-access environments; and prevailing in all domains, including cyber.”
ISR, CT, WMD, A2/AD, & Cyber. No issues there.
Out of the assessment we developed a defense strategy that transitions our Defense enterprise from an emphasis on today’s wars to preparing for future challenges, protects the broad range of U.S. national security interests, advances the Department’s efforts to rebalance and reform, and supports the national security imperative of deficit reduction through a lower level of defense spending.

This strategic guidance document describes the projected security environment and the key military missions for which the Department of Defense (DoD) will prepare. It is intended as a blueprint for the Joint Force in 2020, providing a set of precepts that will help guide decisions regarding the size and shape of the force over subsequent program and budget cycles, and highlighting some of the strategic risks that may be associated with the proposed strategy.
That is what a responsible leader does. You cannot fault him for this. You may not agree with his proposals, but the process is sound.
For the foreseeable future, the United States will continue to take an active approach to countering these threats by monitoring the activities of non-state threats worldwide, working with allies and partners to establish control over ungoverned territories, and directly striking the most dangerous groups and individuals when necessary.

we will of necessity rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region.
That is very close to Plan Salamander. The devil is in the details, but this represents continuity of broader concepts we have been operating under for a long time.
Our defense efforts in the Middle East will be aimed at countering violent extremists and destabilizing threats, as well as upholding our commitment to allies and partner states.

To support these objectives, the United States will continue to place a premium on U.S. and allied military presence in .– and support of .– partner nations in and around this region.
There is a subtle shift from trying to create a Middle East safe for democracy as we saw a decade ago, but in light of national will and present realities – that is very reasonable.

Speaking of reasonable and Plan Salamander, this was almost lifted from one of my posts over the years.
Most European countries are now producers of security rather than consumers of it. Combined with the drawdown in Iraq and Afghanistan, this has created a strategic opportunity to rebalance the U.S. military investment in Europe, moving from a focus on current conflicts toward a focus on future capabilities. In keeping with this evolving strategic landscape, our posture in Europe must also evolve.
Verily. WWII and the Cold War are both over. Keep a few Combined training and logistics bases with our NATO allies and come home; lock, stock, and barrel.

Speaking of amphibian echoes … Jerry, call your office.
Across the globe we will seek to be the security partner of choice, pursuing new partnerships with a growing number of nations .–including those in Africa and Latin America .– whose interests and viewpoints are merging into a common vision of freedom, stability, and prosperity. Whenever possible, we will develop innovative, low-cost, and small-footprint approaches to achieve our security objectives, relying on exercises, rotational presence, and advisory capabilities.
I am tempted just to do a bunch of “continuity” quotes of what is almost boilerplate national security concepts in this document, just to emphasize that everyone should take a powder. One will do, here is an example;
The United States will continue to lead global efforts with capable allies and partners to assure access to and use of the global commons, both by strengthening international norms of responsible behavior and by maintaining relevant and interoperable military capabilities.
That has been true for going on 70 years.

What about the Primary Mission Areas? Can you argue with these?
  • Counter Terrorism and Irregular Warfare
  • Deter and Defeat Aggression
  • Project Power Despite Anti-Access/Area Denial Challenges
  • Counter Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Operate Effectively in Cyberspace and Space
  • Maintain a Safe, Secure, and Effective Nuclear Deterrent
  • Defend the Homeland and Provide Support to Civil Authorities
  • Provide a Stabilizing Presence
  • Conduct Stability and Counterinsurgency Operations
  • Conduct Humanitarian, Disaster Relief, and Other Operations
The order and emphasis may be different, but Rummy or Dick Cheney could have put that list out.

Looking forward in the “Toward the Joint Force of 2020” there is more to thank the influence of those in the background who worked on this under the guidance of Secretary Panetta.
… we have sought to differentiate between those investments that should be made
today and those that can be deferred. This includes an accounting of our ability to make a course change that could be driven by many factors, including shocks or evolutions in the strategic, operational, economic, and technological spheres. Accordingly, the concept of “reversibility” – including the vectors on which we place our industrial base, our people, our active-reserve component balance, our posture, and our partnership emphasis – is a key part of our decision calculus.
… We will resist the temptation to sacrifice readiness in order to retain force structure, and will in fact rebuild readiness in areas that, by necessity, were deemphasized over the past decade. An ill-prepared force will be vulnerable to corrosion in its morale, recruitment, and retention.
… the Department must continue to reduce the .“cost of doing business..” This entails
reducing the rate of growth of manpower costs, finding further efficiencies in overhead and headquarters, business practices, and other support activities before taking further risk in meeting the demands of the strategy.
This sets the foundation for a lot of creative friction. This is a great opportunity. A2/AD, “Influence Squadrons,” rebuilding neglected readiness areas – these are all Navy areas. We need to embrace them and lean in to the President’s challenge.

Having trouble finding enough personnel to make this happen in an environment of decreasing resources? Balderdash. So much more was done by those who came before with fewer people. Take a broad axe to staffs. Cleave off our top-heavy force structure and decouple non value-added BA/NMP.

Heck, give me a stack of manning documents and a case of beer. I’ll grab 3-4 retried CDR/CAPT and ensconce our little cabal in my hunting cabin in the swamp for a fortnight and we’ll give you the cuts you need.

Wait, thinking about the people I would take with me – make that a half-dozen cases and a mixed case of scotch. Better yet – just make it two cases of beer, a bottle of Oban, and we’ll do it in a weekend instead – we have paying gigs to take care of.

We’ll do it pro-bono too.

So, put down the hair shirt. Pack up the sack cloth and ashes. Save the flail for post 2012 election results if needed. This is an opportunity to do some good. The fat of last decade only made our Navy distracted, lazy, and in an intellectual stupor. The stress on they system may fix things.

Be cheerful, rosin up your hands and pull on your oar with vigor.

To end things up like we started; I’m sorry. Can’t help myself.

84 comments:

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Trusting soul today, aren't you?

We shall see.

Looks like a deck chair shuffle to me.

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Oh, "The election can't come soon enough for me".

Eric Palmer said...

A2/AD does have problems. Big ones. We are on the way to having an obsolete carrier air wing for our wet dream 2020 force structure. Super H can do some good work but it is only a second-tier strike fighter. The F-35C hook is in the wrong place on the jet (after passing CDR in 2007 lol) and will....NEVER trap. It is not a trivial fix. To the point of there being no real fix. Those that think about these things should get used to that reality. 

Defense could stop giving the left ammo if we had sensible weapons programs. For instance, the F-35 and LCS and even the DDX do nothing but take money away from other defence communities that could use the cash better. 

Put emphasis on the Pacific? Great idea. But we need real sea power and air power advocates that are NOT afraid to speak their mind. We do not have that. Instead, most of our O-6s turn into zombies once they make flag.

Serious problems.

Byron said...

The kleptocrat, the bureaucrat, the bought and paid for puppet. The lot of them make me sick to my stomach. They are totally underserving of the loyalty they demand.

OutlawMike said...

Help me out there, Byron. OK about the kleptocrat and the bureaucrat, but I thought - I may have missed things over the last couple of years - that Odierno has an outstanding record? What makes you think he's a 'bought and paid for puppet'?

Again, Last I heard from him was two or three years back and his rep unsmeared.

FCC(SW) said...

"Alright, ever'body, for real now -- don't this dude in the uniform look like "Bull" from "Night Court?"

Byron said...

Got four words for you: "Revolt of the Admirals"

Actus Rhesus said...

One way to shrink the DoD budget is to not order an illegal war (call it what you want. but firing missiles into a country with the goal of regime change is war) that Congress has not funded thus requiring DoD to take it out of hide.

There's that....

AW1 Tim said...

To my mind, ALL of our aviation squadrons need to go back to being self-sustaining.  Heck, all of our units ought to be capable of independent ops, and by that I mean taking care of your own maintenance, food, admin, etc with those aboard, and NOT from some central facility.

Back in my day, if the runway was long enough, we could operate out of it. If needs be, we could use tents and field kitchens off the side of the tarmac. We had everything we needed, from our own flight surgeon and Corpsmen, to our own Mess Cooks, Admin folks, even an Intel and CT crew.

Noweadays? Not so much.

Andy said...

"Ray suddenly found himself seriously weighing the prospects of many years at Leavenworth with the utter joy of publicly delivering a nuclear wedgie to a pompous, narcissistic idiot. The question was, which one?"

MR T's Haircut said...

Caption comment - "On hole four I birdie, Leon escapes with a bogie out of the sand and ole Ray, couldnt make change for a 20 with the beer wench.., oh and he took a two stroke penalty since I used his ball and kicked mine into the water when he was fumbling through his wallet...true story!"

MR T's Haircut said...

Caption -

"As we are cutting first without a military strategy to dictate the cuts, I am appointing Charlie Sheen as Secretary of the Army.  Can you say "winning"?"

Stu said...

Byron,

I've been waiting for years for a Flag Officer who would throw his stars on the table over issues like this.

My wait will almost certainly continue.  

I have no issue with cuts, but I do take issue with the spineless cuts to DOD while not touching anything else.  Some shared pain, for once, would be a good thing.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

So what is it about us that discounts our enemies' jihandist vows to kill Americans and destroy our country and way of life, when they ALWAYS mean what they say, and on the other hand believe someone like Obama when he pledges to maintain a capable military when he NEVER means what he says? 

Guest said...

Which one are you talking about?  Iraq, Afghanistan, Somolia, Yemen, Libya, Pakistan.....?  Illegal?  AUMF...Congress has completely abdicated their responsibility to the American people.  At the end of the day, if you really want to affect real change, you have to get the right people in CONgress.  It's damn near impossible, and I suspect it all has to change at the state and local level, but that's a ten year project since re-districting has already happened.  Talk about the president all you want, but the problem is in the CONgress.

Sean said...

Correct me if I am mistaken, but I do not believe that the cuts in the Defense budget will solve the problem.  The areas of the budget that are causing the problems are the areas of the budget that we are not addressing, namely entitlements that we can no longer afford.

That being said I am all for a weekend slash and burn through the defense budget.  I will even bring my own bottle of Lagavulin.

This weekend the defense budget, next weekend the Federal budget....

OutlawMike said...

Byron, I'm not getting much wiser after wikiing that phrase. Has Odierno in one way or another upset you Navy guys?

I find it actually a pity that each time the gubberming announces cuts, the military branches, instead of showing a unified front, engage in interservice rivalry. This makes it only easier for the politicians to do what they want to do and indeed, it IS easier for them to take on the military instead of welfare.

Just been reading Sharkey Ward's account of the Falklands air war. That too was in a period of severe cuts, and there seems to have been (still, I suppose), an ENORMOUS rivalry with a lot of bitching and backstabbing between the Fleet Air Arm and the RAF. Pity, actually.

OutlawMike said...

Byron, I'm not getting much wiser after wikiing that phrase. Has Odierno in one way or another upset you Navy guys?

I find it actually a pity that each time the gubberming announces cuts, the military branches, instead of showing a unified front, engage in interservice rivalry. This makes it only easier for the politicians to do what they want to do and indeed, it IS easier for them to take on the military instead of welfare.

Just been reading Sharkey Ward's account of the Falklands air war. That too was in a period of severe cuts, and there seems to have been (still, I suppose), an ENORMOUS rivalry with a lot of bitching and backstabbing between the Fleet Air Arm and the RAF. Pity, actually.

Guest said...

Because you and I both know that the jihadists can't destroy the country.  They have the intent, but not the capacity.  We are the only ones that have the capability to destroy ourselves, and we're doing a pretty good job.  JFK was right.  Irrational fear will be the vector of our self imposed destruction.

Cupojoe said...

I don't wanna be another Vern Clark

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

This is not just the work of Obama and Leon the Hatchet.  Read Martin Dempsey's 2009 TRADOC ARMY Capstone Concept.  It was plagarized by Leon and Obama.

So whiel there is plenty of blame for Hatchet and Barry, spread it to Marty as well.

Mark T said...

Tim, you just broke the code, all the non-hackers who didn't like long cruising set up the centralized "infrastructure" so they didnt have to go anywhere...
And you said "back in my day", so 2 strokes on your chit for that.

Captain Joe said...

Yet, we have enough funding to make a carnival ride like this:
http://xa.yimg.com/kq/groups/1224833/419350125/name/f-35.wmv

Captain Joe said...

Odinero is a trained killer.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Irrational fear, which suspends any semblance of due process and legalizes the US Military to arrest and detain US citizens indefinitely without trial, or charges, mixed liberally with an imbecile's optimism regarding people we have been at war with for ten years?

That kind of irrational fear?

maogwai cat said...

 He's gonna knock out the first M.F. who laughs in the audience...

Byron said...

Really?:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raymond_T._Odierno

Fairly vanilla assignments, cannon cocker by trade, and with "normal" progression in rank with respect to time in rank till next promotion...till he got stars. After that, he got a star every other year till he got his fourth star. Sounds more like a well trained Pentagon killer to me....

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

I read through the entire document before reading the post.  Now, can someone please tell me what I just read?  Was it a National Security Strategy?  No...the document said that its purpose was to determine how we would exercise the NSS in an environment of decreasing resources.  So WTF?  When does the next NSS come out?  And then do we get new rudder orders after that?  I am beyond confused, and am all out of flags in my pocket and hats on my head to signify the process fouls that have been committed, let alone the complete lack of strategic thought.

CDR, you are being too optimistic.  I see fail written all over this.

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Depends on whether 3000 civilians KIA matters to you or not.  Per successful attack.  Certainly not decisive, but is such a thing therefore tolerable?

Yes, I know, the punitive expeditions (because that's all we've really accomplished) weren't that well run, but that, as they say, is a management issue and not a policy question.

Of course, so, ultimately, is national survival...

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Your logic is unassailable.

Scott Brim, USAF Partisan said...

Why is General Odinero scowling?

Well, for one possible reason -- among several reasons which potentially might be operative -- we could imagine that a hypothetical conversation of the kind described below might have occured just before the cameras started rolling:

General Odinero:  "Mr. President, Secretary Panetta, what specific impacts will this new strategy have on DOD's internal funding profile?"

President Obama:  "General Odinero, the Administration will recommend to the Congress that after the forthcoming DOD budget cutting exercises are fully implemented, the US Army's portion of future DOD funding will be reduced to a 30% share of the remaining total, with the US Air Force and the US Navy each receiving a 35% share, respectively."

Secretary Panetta:  "General Odinero, it is your task to determine what the US Army's own spending priorities will be under its 30% share of future DOD budgets, consistent with the objectives outlined in the 2012 strategy document.  The analysis work needed to support your decisions will commence immediately following this press conference."

Grandpa Bluewater said...

The RAF has been the fleet air arm's worst enemy since day one.

Always remember, wars come and go, alliances and enemies change with the wind,

 Congresses convene and new elections come, Presidents are for but 8 years at most, but the true long term enemy of the naval service is an independent air force with a Douhetist doctrine.

Or words to that effect, and coined before I was born.

I take a more moderate stance.  The Air Force is an Army discipline problem that got totally out of hand... ;)

Hope that clears things up for those who wandered in.

Kristen said...

I'm clicking on "like" in spite of the lack of proper respect that you showed for your Air Force brethren up above. ;)  

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Agreed, GBW.  The terrorists have the power to do more damage with a small number of 100kt devices smuggled across our wide-open borders, or in some shipping containers, to NY, LA, Boston, Dallas, and DC than the Axis could ever have done combined in the biggest war mankind has ever wrought upon itself. 

But hey, jihadists can't destroy ALL of our cities, right?

James said...

Heres my prediction. Everything gets underfunded but the non important stuff. No one has enough sailors to go around. Its gets worse.

Carrier fleet is cut back to 9.

New DDG-51Block III goes upwards of 1.5 then 2.0 bil dollars a copy after which either fewer are ordered or the program is cut with a less capable but more expensive ship to follow.

LCS fleet continues on its the promised land to the Idiots of the brave new navy world....which ignores the realities of modern conflict.

Etc, etc, etc...........

Jim Kelly said...

I am reminded of a book about advertising in which an advertising firm looses a major account. After much agonizing the suits decide the only thing to do is to fire a bunch of clerical staff. Will the admirals decide that, in light of the cuts, the only thing to do is get rid of, say, all BM2s?

Aubrey said...

"Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past."

Read it and weep....

Aubrey said...

I didn't "Like" the contents, just the perspicacity

FCC(SW) said...

SPOILING!

Captain Joe said...

That's his normal business mien. There are several pics of him like that on the web.

James said...

I love it when people compliment me with words i have never ever heard or read in my entire life.........i think....

Chick CDR said...

Guest, are you sure they can't destroy us? I think we should be carefully watching what happens to Egypt - there, it wasn't so much direct action and insurgent activities as it was just plain old voter turnout. The more extreme folks tend to have a whole lotta babies, easily accomplished with multiple wives, and those babies grow up rather quickly and vote. Add to the watch list, all of Europe. Europe suffers close to zero population growth (generality, not country by country specifics) so import guest workers, take in asylum types who settle, refuse to assimilate, have a whole lotta babies, end up voting, etc, etc, ad nauseum. I'll find it and post it here (may be a few days) but there was an Imam a few years ago at some Islam conference in Turkey who was confronted by a European reporter who wasn't buying the whole "peaceful Islam" shtick, and the Imam finally got po'd and fired back, paraphrasing, "Yes, we are mandated to take you (the West) over, and it will be through your own democracies that we accomplish our goal." Sends a chill, no? So personal opinion, whether attacks or out-breeding us, our nations and our ways of life do, indeed, remain in danger.

Chick CDR said...

Outlaw, I had to look it up, too... In Iraq, Odierno wouldn't let us Navy personnel wear our Battle Ensign on our uniforms, even though all ships and Navy personnel in cammies all over the globe were allowed to, and had since May of 2002! (A CSM explained to me the good general didn't care for our little motto! Huh? Most of us wore it under the velcro pocket flap.) Bad enough we were wearing Army uniforms, but don't take away our "Don't Tread on Me!" Odierno was relieved by Austin, and literally on the very first day he assumed command, he told the Navy folks we could wear our flag, he understood the historical significance of it, etc. Huge morale boost. Have no idea what Gen O's beef was with that flag.

Guest said...

Not decisive.  Also, not tolerable.  Burger Kings and Green Beans in Afghanistan is the correct approach?  I think not.  AFG and IRQ were much more than a punitive strike and you know it.  The last 5 years have not been spent in freedom's best interest.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Guest, take a breather.  Congress authorized Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, and Yemen.  They did not authorize Libya until well after the fact.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

AFG and IRQ were in some cases much less than a punitive strike, as well. 

Twenty megatons on Baghdad and ten megatons on Basra, Mosul, Kabul, etc., was well within our power. 

We didn't because we are civilized.  But let's not forget that.  If it were truly punitive, there would be a few million Iraqis left in their wasteland.  Fewer than that in AFG.

The Usual Suspect said...

We should not become so civilized that we allow ourselves to be treated in an uncivilized manner.  That is precisely the type of situation that national (sic) leadership has put us in over the last few administrations.  If you have Netflix, check out the dvd "Unthinkable"; maybe a little more of that and a little less of this.

James said...

Who needs shiping containers. Those massive LNG tankers.......think about it they are basicly the worlds largest fuel air explosives. One of those goes off good bye every other thing for around a mile or so.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

A piece of triva for you, FDNY's plan for dealing with a LNG tanker blowing up is basically the same as how they would deal with a nuclear strike.

ewok40k said...

make it 8 carriers, methink rest is spot on..

ewok40k said...

terrorists can't get even one 100kt warhead without being traceable to country of origin... OTOH LNG tankers and god-knows what else dual purpose items lurk within our technosphere.
my take? you can't take out every america-hating loonie in the world, in fact if trying to do so, you will create more of them. just concentrate on finding those who try to infiltrate and do actual damage - and this is more job for the intelligence and secret services with a splash of special forces, than for CVBGs, ayway. still, there are threats other than jihadists, and given milestone 2008 Georgia (first time Russia waged war externally since 1989 exit from AFG) and general China cocerns in SE Asia there should be plenty of deterrence to be done in the high end of spectrum.

ewok40k said...

Artillery killed most of the people in both world wars... God of war was it called, and without reason not, says Yoda.

ewok40k said...

be careful what you wish for you can get a Ron Paul...

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Ewok, your assertion that terrorists can't get a 100kt device without trace to the country of origin will no longer be the case when weapons grade stuff begins to roll out in quantity from Iran and North Korea. 

Then all bets are off.  Anybody tells you different is smoking hash.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Byron,

Once guys get a star, they are in a different pool.  Mattis went from one to four in five years.  Hell, Dunford SKIPPED a pay grade.  They are hardly Pentagon types.  Served with both in combat, they are the best of the best. 

ewok40k said...

NK has weapons grade stuff for years... and if we get a NK "signature" stuff detonated anywhere it is all over for Kim the 3rd, and he knows it, and we know he knows it...
Iran is more of a concern, but they dont need proxies to do stuff they want do themselves. I expect Revolutionary Guard to handle such stuff. The problem with Iran compared with NK is Kim doesnt believe in 72 maidens in the afterlife... and Shiite tradition is even more focused on martyrdom than most of the Islamic denominations. The good side with Iran is that it is much more vulnerable to external pressure than NK, hence all the nervousness in regards to newest batch of sanctions. The regime is not certain to  survive a wave of inflation and capital flight and blocking Hormuz will make their own economy even worse off.

LT B said...

That is a video game.  The F35 is nowhere near that cool.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

ewok,

Your assertions are not correct.  With either NK or Iran.  Certainly not when there is very good money in supplying proxies.

LT B said...

EWOK,
   You underestimate the general smarmy spinelessness that is pervasive in DC.  I think they would double down on sanctions if there is nuclear material traced back to NORKO or PAK or Iran.  GWB's response was rare.  Look at the TLAM responses to any of the other attacks.  We are not the US of A we were in WW2.  There are a lot of apologists out there willing to blame the US for attacks on the US.  There are politicians willing to buy the truther's votes.  I have less faith in the warrior ethos of the country as a whole.  We have been infiltrated over decades of "progressive" movements.

LT B said...

The Marine I work with calls the USAF the most patriotic civilians he knows. :)

Byron said...

OM, when it comes to national defense, I'm not a "Navy guy". I'm an American, one of those people who shed blood twice to save Europe from itself. Next time, we keep it...all of it. Except France. We'll give all of France save for Paris (for the food, you know) to the Muslims. Those two deserve each other.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Just imagine how much worse this will be if Tin Foil Hat Ron Paul gets elected.........

MR T's Haircut said...

The entire defense budget wont mean anything if we cant pay our bills.  This "cut" will be diverted to welfare and other entitlement programs.  We are Rome circa 470AD.  We may even already have a ceasar, but the Praetoria Guard are actually the Media instead of soldiers.

We are screwed.

We need a Strategy to arrest the decline in our values and our culture.  We need a political system that  values honor and merit and good of the nation over good of the self.  We lack Virtue. 

I think Descartes had it right when he stated " Virtue is the only good, among all those we can possess, which depends entirely on our free will”

And Centuries later, Benjamin Franklin Distilled it to this simple phrase "Sell not virtue to purchase wealth, nor liberty to purchase power. "

We have surely done both.

Guest said...

Read what you wrote and explain how that is not irrational fear.

Guest said...

Well, then endless low end conventional war is the answer.  Sign your kids up for those ships with the 8" guns.

ewok40k said...

Sadly, if you're right all the $ in the world on defence won't mean a thing if you can't use the gear bought and people trained with them - because politicians wont have the will to act - anyway... So far the doctrine for attack with nukes was retaliation with nukes, and I don't expect any less. Even from Obama, actually. He ordered the go on the OBL action, even if he knew it could end another Desert One (the crashed helo shows how close it was), and effectively end his career (which apparently to politician is Fate Worse Than Death).

James said...

I'll go. Military service is thought of as a thing to make a family proud down here must not be where your at.

You should read Sun Tzu sometime. Strike where your enemy is weakest.

If we lose the ability to dominate in conventional warfare that is where the enemy will strengthen himself.

The problem with Ewoks and your strategy is that we would forever be on the defensive and in the end the US would turn into a mirror of communist russia.

If one of those LNG tankers ever does go off in the US or a nuke........we'll drown the world in blood and you'll see something you havnt seen sence the romans fell......a entirely unrepentent superpower which will accpt nothing but the annhilation of the enemy.

The Romans are basicly the mother in many ways of all european civilizations..........they were brutes who accelled at Military strategy, and logistics. They went about it like farms reaping wheat. But they were civilized there is that.......doubt it made any difference when the ripped apart carthage.

James said...

The problem is how do you tell people that its wrong for a company to bring 2,000 jobs to their town?

ewok40k said...

James, , you will see then ashes of US as every single nuke power retaliates against you... the problem is youre not the only with guns, cowboy.
The "forever defensive" worked well in the cold war. Let the militant Islam prove it's inability to run a society. Win the war of ideas. Minuteman's and Ohio's and B-52s might have deterred Soviet bear, but it was MTV (when it was airing music) and the Star Wars/ET that caught the spirit of youngsters behind the Iron Curtain.

FCC(SW) said...

"It is very difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span>Winner of the Caption Contest above!!!!</span>

UltimaRatioRegis said...

"<span>you will see then ashes of US as every single nuke power retaliates against you... the problem is youre not the only with guns, cowboy."</span>

Not a chance.  If the US strikes in response to a massive attack (chem or nuke, or esp bio), Russia doesn't launch over Teheran.  Neither does Beijing.  UK, Israel, India, likewise. 

I do believe that similar conversations to the effect that, "Next 9/11 happens, whether you angry jihadi Muhammedans are involved or not, stand by", was a big impetus to keep the worst of them in check for a while.   Which is why POTUS needs to keep his trap shut about removing "ambiguity" from our nuclear policy.

Alpha Check said...

"Best of the best"... you mean like the guys from Men in Black?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

No, I mean like the guys from The Old Breed.

The baddest Hollywood bad guy is a p*ssy compared to either of those guys, or to Conway.

Wharf Rat said...

<span><span>UltimaRatioRegis </span></span>

<span></span>
<span><img></img></span><span>
<span>So what is it about us that discounts our enemies' jihandist vows to kill Americans and destroy our country and way of life, when they ALWAYS mean what they say, and on the other hand believe someone like Obama when he pledges to maintain a capable military when he NEVER means what he says? </span></span>
<span><span></span></span>
<span><span>Exactly - I'm supposed to believe that Obama means what he says?  Where is the same press conference with other cabinet members redesigning the real problem, the entitlement programs????</span></span>

<span><img></img></span><span>UltimaRatioRegis</span><span><span>View details</span></span><span></span><span></span>

Outlaw Mike said...

Chick CDR, thanks for looking that up for me. Wow. Ouch, the good general has sunk maybe not to the bottom, but a good deal towards it. How childish.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Caption:  "I'm going to kick Dave's ass for convincing me to take this job while he got to retire and go to CIA."

UltimaRatioRegis said...

The LNG tankers are a lot harder to blow up than one might think... 

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

I think they are more concerned with the effects of a BLEVE ( Burning Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion ) involving a LNG tanker catching fire, and rupturing a storage tank.  BLEVEs can be very impressive.

Fire fighters tease us about explosions and HAZMAT scenes by knowing that you have gotten too close without SCBA, when you reach the "Dead Cop Line", but a BLEVE can reverse that, with the mutual aid FD having to hose the First Due Engine Company off the scenery.  

Grandpa Bluewater said...

"Endless low end conventional wars."  No, just until we learn how to deal with them. Then somebody will try something else.  

" There will be wars and rumors of wars."

It's the old normal. You stall it the same old way.  "If you wish for peace, prepare for war".

It's the only game in town, always has been.

Ah, the innocent optimism of callow youth.

ewok40k said...

<span>Russia has just put some warships on Syria's coast just to spoil any possibility of US airstrikes. Guess they are more than willing to risk a confrontation over not even Tehran but Tehran's ally.</span>

ewok40k said...

I'd add a pessimism (of age?) - never before so few could kill so many so easy - form the 9/11 to the Tokyo sarin attack we see how small sects/cults/terror cells gain killing potential once reserved for sovereign states. Dual purpose tech is everywhere... the LPG tanker is proverbial tip of the iceberg. And all this is easier to obtain and use than nukes. 9/11 attackers didn't have any state sponsor save AFG being hosts for training bases. Next major attack can have as well no obvious retaliation target.

habap said...

Byron, giving the Muslims all of France except Paris is the exact opposite of what we ought to do. First, they would rip out all of the wineyards because no one should be imbibing alcohol. Then, the beaches in the south of France would be shut down, which I suspect our sailors would be rather unhappy with. Of course, they wouldn't be allowed into Marseilles anyway, so maybe that is moot. Normandy would likely be made off-limits as well, though the military cemeteries for the many north Africans Muslims who died liberating Metropolitan France would still be cared for. Finally, rural France (especially Normandy) is where Americans are still thanked for liberating France - in Paris, not so much. You will find plenty of good food in Lyon, Caen, Bordeaux, Orleans and in small towns throughout the country. So, given a choice between Paris or the rest of France, I'd give them Paris.

USSHelm said...

God help us.