Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Clinton Generals

I'm always amazed those who complained about Halliburton were so clueless about what Rumsfeld was cleaning up from the start over at the Pentagon. A good analysis by Larry Stirling here.

I used to see Grace Hopper by the way, getting donuts in the Pentagon concourse every morning. I wanted to ask her to sign my COBOL book but was too embarrased to ask a flag officer for that. I'm sure she would have though.

Also check The Generals and CDIon the Center for Defense Information (CDI) and their role in the General's revolt.

Here's from Stirling
Billy Mitchell knew the value of air power and fought for it; ditto Hyman Rickover, who successfully brought about our nuclear Navy; George Patton, the tank corps; and Adm. Grace Hopper, who brought computers into the military.

Not so any of these guys. They waited until they were in the safety of retirement before mouthing any opinion.

They should have heeded the old saw that says: "Better to remain quiet and let people think you don't know what is going on instead of talking and confirming it."

The problem with militaries is that they become, in part, conduits of money expropriated from the American public in the name of national defense and then funneled into useless pork-barrel projects as nothing more than huge public subsidies to some senior congressman's constituency.

The "battleship admirals" that objected to Billy Mitchell's airplanes were fronting for the battleship contractors and all their employees back at the shipyards.

The modern-day version of this is Donald Rumsfeld, himself a combat veteran, confronting an entrenched military establishment of which nearly four-fifths of the active team is non-combatant.

One of his first actions was to cancel the development the huge Crusader artillery system that was no longer relevant to the asymmetrical warfare America is facing. Of course, that ticked off all the guys on the Crusader gravy train.

Civilians must control the military or we will find ourselves flirting with a military "party" of which these generals are the seed corn.

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