« "Black unemployment rate: Highest since 1984" And Guess What? That's Raaaaacist! | Main | Messiah of Hate »

September 4, 2011

Ann Barnhardt Takes Exception to Seals Being Described as "Fungible" [Bumped]

Ready. Fire. Aim:
Admiral McRaven dismissed assertions that the most highly trained Navy and Army commando teams should be reserved solely for the most high-profile missions;“We have to be fungible as a force,” Admiral McRaven said. “And if we are not fungible as a force, then we are not of value." Admiral Defends Use of Navy Seals Unit in Fatal Raid

Really Admiral? Really? The 15 DEVGRU SEALs that were killed on that Chinook were literally some of the most valuable tactical human military assets THAT HAVE EVER EXISTED IN ALL OF HUMAN HISTORY. These DEVGRU men aren’t just SEALs, they are the absolute elite of the elite. Most of them are in their early to mid 30s, and have YEARS of combat experience in the other SEAL Teams before being hand-picked to join DEVGRU.

“I’m not sure I know how it ends,” [McRaven] said. “This may be the ‘new normal,’ in terms of this threat that we will have to live with for a long time."

Let me tell you “how it ends”, Admiral Pantspisser. It ends in swift, total, complete and unconditional victory. Either get your head around that or resign. We The People are sick and tired of politicking, imbecilic, touchy-feely asses like you using the treasure of this nation as cannon fodder to justify your self-serving politically correct agenda and whose dead bodies you step on to clamber your way up the payscale/pension ladder. Admiral McRaven, you have proven yourself wholly unqualified for your position at best, and a disgrace to the United States Navy and a water-carrying oath-breaker at worst.

Posted by Vanderleun at September 4, 2011 1:58 PM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

Your Say

Fungible???? So, does ADM McRaven want the DEVGRU guys to man outposts with 10th Mountain platoons and work vehicle checkpoints with ANA troops? That's what he's implying. Not, to say the least, the best use of DEVGRU sailors.

Posted by: waltj at September 2, 2011 6:03 AM

Ahhh, the great levelling. Basically he told us that they're all cannon fodder, and that not only will their lives be spent mercilessly, but foolishly as well. This kind of stuff makes me wonder indeed if there's some great conspiracy afoot to destroy every manifestation of what's excellent and decent and noble about our country and grind it under the bootheel of egalitarianism. Who knows what this guy had to swallow to rise to the level he is, but statements like the above give a worm-filled glimpse.

Posted by: teresa at September 2, 2011 7:19 AM

Retired USN, definitely non-SPECWAR, here.

I always considered SOF operators to be strategic assets, not to be wasted.

Posted by: BUTCH at September 2, 2011 7:35 AM

Alternate view - Retired USA - to keep a combat edge, units need to engage in combat. Special Operations Forces are trained, equipped, and employed in the full spectrum of warfare - from asymmetric conflict to main battle area force-on-force engagement. Special or not, we go in harms way to improve our ability to close with and kill or capture. Nothing improves proficiency like a real gunfight! So the Admiral's making a valid point.....

Posted by: Tom at September 2, 2011 7:58 AM

Actually, he meant to say 'disposable.'

Posted by: Jewel at September 2, 2011 8:24 AM

The point Miss Barnhardt was making, Tom, was that these warriors lives were wasted due to egregious strategy errors, i.e. putting them all together in a Nat. Guard helo, not using their own specialized air craft, etc., etc.,the list is very long. The excuse this man comes up with is flimsy, and given the particulars, doesn't pass the smell test.
By your use of "we" in your post, are you claiming to be member of some branch of Special Forces?

Posted by: teresa at September 2, 2011 9:01 AM

Ann Barnhardt is a damned fool. What she knows about military operations in general and special operations specifically could be engraved on the head of a pin in 14-point font and still have room left over for War and Peace.

She does nothing but carp, criticize, complain and call names - "Admiral Pantpisser"? Really? And pray, what has Ms. B. done that is more dangerous than using a hair dryer on a bathroom floor where shower water has dripped?

Ann B. is of small intellect and smaller character. To boot, I call her a fraud and a liar, claiming all sorts of insider informers whom she never names and never explains how she came to know or why they sluice such detailed operational information to her and not to, say Michael Yon or Blackfive or Bill Roggio or any others of a dozen or so writers have have actually done the business themselves.

I have known personally and served with many special-ops men and commanders, and Ann Barnhardt is not fit to give them a cup of coffee.

Posted by: Donald Sensing at September 2, 2011 9:30 AM

Well said, Donald. Barnhart is way off the mark on this one. She has besmirched the name of an honorable officer, who appears to have an unblemished and exceptional service history. This is no different than the left calling a genuine hero "General Betray-Us." Of course, that epithet was likewise used by people ignorant of the military. Funny how the least knowledgeable tend to be the loudest bomb-throwers.

Any military person knows that "fungibility" or interchangability are hallmarks of the service. It has to be. Any Navy 2nd Class Boatswain's Mate should be able to fill the billet (with little training) of any other BM3. Any A1C should be an acceptable substitute for any other A1C. Likewise with a Surface Warfare LTJG. Otherwise, there would be no need for rates and ranks in the first place.

Having known a great many, the SEALS take pride in the fact that they can fill the shoes of any other SEAL, and that they are, first and foremost, sailors and Navy.

Anybody who doesn't get this, and then pops off badmouthing a great Admiral who has spent his whole adult life defending this country....well....Barnhart seems to have overstepped the boundry of her knowledge here.

Posted by: Blastineau at September 2, 2011 10:27 AM

Oh gawd, I hate an intermural firefight, but sometimes it needs to be done. I lived in Coronado for a dozen years, and NEVER met a SEAL who would answer up to being a sailor. I'll add to that, that the special operators have historically been loose cannons operationally, and with the current evolution of the state of warfare with the elevation of these folks, the lack of adult leadership is manifesting itself organizationally. Add to that, that the purple joint inter-operability world has negative side effects, and you have the subject for a series of very good books. Ground combat needs to be run by the guys who know ground combat, Infantry Officers. You don't find them in blue suits.

And yes, Barnhardt is out of line.

Posted by: Casca at September 2, 2011 10:55 AM

Although Barnhardt may be misguided on this one, it is a libel to call her either a fraud or a liar. She doesn't deserve that.

Posted by: ahem at September 2, 2011 11:17 AM

Hey, I've been in uniform a long time; since we are all "fungible", I would like to exchange my slot for that of the dumbass flag-grade officer who didn't know that the Mujahideen used to lure the big Soviet helicopters up that same valley and kill them the same way.

The only goddamned lesson we ever learn is that we fail to learn any goddamned lessons.

I'm glad Ann is pissed off, that's why we have a civilian-controlled military: as demonstrated above, it's the only way to cut through the "Hoo-ah" culture and say: "That was fucking dumb, Admiral. Do better."


Posted by: Gray at September 2, 2011 11:36 AM

With all respect to those dissenting voices above, I believe there is a problem with politically correct senior officers under the command of inept and venal politicians and yes brave men bleed for the stupidity above. My credibility is based on living the same nightmare in 1968 in the Iron Triangle.

Posted by: bill at September 2, 2011 1:01 PM

There has never been a great mind that did not become blunted upon becoming a bureaucrat. Patraeus is the most recent example.

"All authority implies an extreme reluctance to admit error"--Patrick O'Brian

Posted by: james wilson at September 2, 2011 1:05 PM

It is clear from her remarks (and those of some of your commentators, Gerard) that Mrs. Barnhardt simply does not know the meaning of the word "fungible."

It's embarrassing, really.

Posted by: gedaliya at September 2, 2011 1:52 PM

So please, gedaliya, enlighten us. What is the definition of the word "fungible".

Posted by: teresa at September 2, 2011 4:14 PM

Since your computer is down and you don't own a dictionary, Teresa, I'll be glad to help you.

"Fungible" means (in context of the general's remarks), that any random group of Navy Seals can undertake a mission without degrading the quality of the force deployed. One Navy Seal or another, you take your pick, and you've got the best-of-the-best. In terms of military preparedness, professionalism, and killing ability, they are indistinguishable as individuals. i.e., "being of such nature or kind as to be freely exchangeable or replaceable, in whole or in part, for another of like nature or kind."

Posted by: gedaliya at September 2, 2011 4:30 PM

At the link Barnhardt defines "fungible" as:

"Here is what “fungible” means.

Fungibility is the property of a good or a commodity whose individual units are capable of mutual substitution, such as crude oil, wheat, precious metals or currencies. For example, if someone lends another person a $10 bill, it does not matter if they are given back the same $10 bill or a different one, since currency is fungible."

Posted by: vanderleun at September 2, 2011 4:34 PM

gedalia, your argument is not germane to the real issue, the 17 warriors are dead. If you or Admiral Urinedrawers think that doesn't degrade the quality of the force, so be it. It is a horrible loss for our SpecOps community and I think that is the gist of Ann's argument. She certainly is a bombthrower,but I think she has reached the point where she is unable to suffer the fools any longer who are ruining our nation. She's not alone.

Posted by: bill at September 2, 2011 5:28 PM

I am well acquainted with the word, but I see that you and the Admiral are making up your own definition for it as you go.

Fungibility presumes the sameness of the commodity being discussed. I'll not belabor the point of the inappropriateness of referring to a human being as a fungible commodity and confine my remarks to how these amazing warriors were wasted.
From what little I know(no Donald Sensing I), they were sent all together on a Nat. Guard helicopter in violation of long standing protocols. A number of ANA went with them. The assumption is that an RPG brought them down, but it could just as easily have been an "allahu akhbar" moment.
"Mistakes were made" would be a far more honest response from the Admiral, and referring to SEALS and Rangers as versatile and complementary would have been a far better use of language when speaking about honored dead. Words have meaning, and man made in the image of God is not "fungible".

Posted by: teresa at September 2, 2011 5:31 PM

Words have meaning, and man made in the image of God is not "fungible".

The admiral was referring to them as soldiers, not as individual men made in the image of God. As soldiers, and as Navy Seals, the very top of the heap in the warrior culture, they most certainly would take pride in being both interchangeable and replaceable in fight-to-the-death missions.

Posted by: gedaliya at September 2, 2011 5:40 PM

Ann Barnhardt is a boob who peddles nutcase SEAL Team conspiracy theory on the internet. She is wrong on so many levels as are most of the critics here.
One, she knows/ they know nothing about what SEALs do beyond what she/ they read in the MSM and the gossip they listens to from their other kook friends. I suspect what most here know about
"strategy" or crisis decision making could be added onto the head of that pin.
Two, there has been no great "leveling" and that is not what the Admiral said or implied.
Three, for those who know their history, SEALs, in their "blue" uniforms have been strategizing, planning and conducting successful, some say audacious, land operations since before Vietnam. I recommend ADM McRaven's book.
Four, the name calling and hyperbolic faux argument is more something I have come to expect from the know-nothing, anti-military left, not from someone who claims to be a Conservative. And, I must add I find Ms. Barnhardt no credit to the Conservative cause.
Five, the BLUF is that a man like ADM McRaven or GEN Petraeus don't require hers/yours/anyone's praise or scorn for what they do.

I won't pretend to know the admiral's thinking or speculate on his motives but I will suggest the SEALs were available for the QRF call out most likely because they were standing by for higher priority missions. But, when the call comes into the JOC that someone is taking effective fire and requesting assistance, I wouldn't want to be the one between the guys and the helos, as they jock up and scramble to load, telling them to take a knee because they are just too important, or at least more important than some Ranger element getting its ass shot off at that moment. The fungible element I think the Admiral was speaking to is the fact that if the SEALS had not gone and done what they did, there would be 30+ dead Rangers out there instead, and instead of all this hoopla we are witnessing you would have read an anonymous byline about another bad day in Afghanistan.
Having known a SEAL or two I can say with certainty that when the call for support came in the only thought that crossed their minds was,
"a brother's in trouble ... lets go get some!"

Posted by: Tyranno at September 2, 2011 10:17 PM

@ Tyranno - hoah! You are "on point" with your opinion!

Posted by: Tom at September 3, 2011 6:28 AM

Can we agree that "fungible" was perhaps a poor choice of words? Regardless, Ann makes a valid point, in spite of the histrionics. DEVGRU should not be the QRF. Not because they're not up to it. Hardly, and if I were in the sh** like that Ranger unit was, this old soldier would love to see DEVGRU coming to save my bacon. But it's not, or should not be, their job. As others have mentioned, DEVGRU is a strategic asset best employed against discrete, high-value targets. If they found themselves in the position where they were the only available unit to perform a QRF mission, then SOCOM and ISAF need to sort out their staff procedures for allocating forces.

Posted by: waltj at September 3, 2011 6:28 AM

Something that is fungible is a commodity, humans are not commodities, except to the leftist fascist mindset. The Admiral is part of the butt-licking politically correct cohort of flag officers that have overrun the services since US Presidents and Secretaries of Defense decided that the US would no longer win wars,merely waste the blood of the best, bravest, and brightest in overseas extended skirmishes that solve nothing and attain no geopolitical end. Roosevelt was at least smart enough to consult with retired flag officers to find out who the fighters were for WWII and then promote the Lt. Col.s and Majors to flag rank and let them loose. Eisenhower was smart enough to know that you don't go into a fight unless you are willing to go all the way and kick the bejesus out of the opposition until they unconditionally surrender. Since then we have had nothing but a bunch of limp-wristed morons and jackasses as Presidents (except Reagan who was the only President since Roosevelt to send our troops in harms way and win the day) and Secretaries of State. And of course, they promoted their own kind to flag rank.

Posted by: St. Thor at September 3, 2011 9:41 AM

St Thor says: "The Admiral is part of the butt-licking politically correct cohort of flag officers that have overrun the services since US Presidents and Secretaries of Defense decided that the US would no longer win wars, merely waste the blood of the best, bravest, and brightest in overseas extended skirmishes that solve nothing and attain no geopolitical end."

Clausewitz said, "war is politics by other means!" SooOOoo accepting your line of thinking here St.T . . . what is the intended positive political endstate of "kicking the bejesus" out of ... who? And "who" is it in Afghanistan, in the GWOT, that will provide that "unconditional surrender, after the butt-kicking, you appear to define as success?"
I will suggest the possibility that this is largely a new strategic game being played on a whole new playing field and it is you who does not understand the breadth of the new definition of "combat," that it might be you who does not understand the dynamics that produce success in this type of fight? Is it possible that all of those "butt-licking," "limp-wristed,"
"politically correct," "morons and jackasses" might be operating outside your realm of understanding and rather than educate yourself you facilly namecall and weakly attempt to besmirch the names of better men than yourself, who are making difficult decisions, in combat that they have shared, where they have lost more friends than than you will ever be allowed to know. But, I digress...
Back to the question at hand, "accepting your line of thinking... what do you see as the positive political endstate of "kicking the bejesus" out of ... who? And "who" is it in Afghanistan, in the GWOT, that will provide that "unconditional surrender you define as success?"


Posted by: Tyranno at September 3, 2011 10:31 AM

I admire the arguments put forth by St. Thor and Tyranno.

I believe I am closer to St. Thor in that I believe that an enemy should regard the possibility of employment of U.S. force as the ultimate catastrophe.

"Diplomacy by other means" should mean "kill them in numbers large enough, waste their territory on a scale best measured from space, and keep doing it until they are defeated".

Defeated. Not convinced. Not compelled. Not signatories to a treaty, an accord.

We do spend more on defense than anybody else on the planet; spend more than the next, what, ten, fifteen nations?

All uniformed service members are expendable assets. A war means killing, which automatically equals dying is always an option. "Fungible" was a terrible choice of words on multiple levels...

But nobody not in the chain of command of the operation in question has a pot to piss in regarding the calling of names. The situation that resulted in all those dead operators was fluid, lethal, but above all it was tactical.

The decisions made on the ground reflected the commander's/s' best effort to accomplish the mission at hand.

Strategy is what put American Rangers in a nation building environment subject to social engineering - influenced ROE, all happening in a fourth world shit hole we are just now coming to realize may be socially deficient on a level to make Detroit look viable...

When we were a rich nation we developed bad habits. Criminalizing drug abuse, subsidizing the moral and social degradation of the family, dumbing down our public education system so our last two generations of citizens can't define what a citizen's responsibilities are or what limits the Constitution has placed on Government. Warehousing murderers, rapists, and traitors at 70K a year instead of burying them.

But the absolute worst failure of our national leadership is evidenced by the fighting of multiple endless land wars in fourth world shit holes when the enemy lives the next country over and goes to sleep every night confident that they will kill more Americans the next day, week, ad infinitum. The inability of our political class to unite enough to at least identify the enemy by name grates, too.

We are become too poor for the above named follies to continue. I wonder how many congressmen hanging from lamp posts, or dead Americans in our streets, it will take before we return to adult behavior in a dangerous world?

Posted by: TmjUtah at September 3, 2011 10:54 AM

Ms Barnhardt has made some very useful contributions in the fight against Voldermort and his minions.

BUT, her initial railing about a Voldermort-directed conspiracy to murder the SEALs and now this are, sadly, way off base. She apparently does not know (SEAL) Admiral McRaven, I suspect she personally knows few if any SEALs. The brotherhood which forms and informs these magnificent warriors views none as a cheap commodity. Admiral McRaven, former commander of JSOC and a helluva man, reflects in his comments the sad reality of the current optempo.

I think Donald Sensing said it best, when he said "Ann Barnhardt is a damned fool."

I would add that she should perhaps, take a breath, take a seat and sip on a nice, warm cuppa STFU.

Take good care,

Posted by: Sandy Daze at September 3, 2011 3:24 PM

What in Hell are we doing in any country 'Nation Building' when they can do that for themselves.
The US Military isn't that limp dick Peace Corp. Use it for what it does; kill enemies and break things.

We have Political Flags in the puzzle palace instead of warriors. Far too many lawyers are running the battlefield. If they want to do that, let them suit up and do it from the front with arms and then decide whether to file that brief.

Politicians have the say but it should be just go or no go, not how to fight the war. What in hell do they know about it, they cannot even read the bills they vote to pass.

If we're going to do battle, crush the enemy, salt their fields and leave. Let the French build up their country, they're into colonialism.

Posted by: Peccable at September 3, 2011 4:17 PM

So I suppose that the next time a mission needs to be run, we leave the SEALs sitting pretty in their hooches because, crap, the Taliban might shoot at them!

Posted by: Donald Sensing at September 4, 2011 4:37 AM

Is Ann wrong in wondering why the Seal deployment used a standard National Guard Chinook rather than the upgraded versions that she says were available and normally used for their operations? Seems like she's asking some valid questions along with her strident statements.

Posted by: Hunt Johnsen at September 4, 2011 7:24 AM

Sure, there are all sorts of valid questions that can, should and are being asked. Any event which results in the loss of a single operator is thoroughly wrung out for any information which will prevent the loss of an operator in a future evolution. An event which results in the greatest single loss of personnel during either the Iraq or Afghanistan campaigns, a loss which reflects the single greatest loss of SEALS at one time--ever--a loss which reflects the most sailors killed at one time, in combat, in decades--will be most thoroughly wrung out, scrutinized, reviewed with a fine tooth comb; however you might want to characterize it, this tragic event will be thoroughly reviewed and a similar circumstance will not occur ever again.

So yes, is Ms Barnhardt asking questions that need to be asked--sure. But, does she or anyone else think that these questions will not be asked unless she brings them to the forefront of consideration with her screeching and name calling (e.g. Admiral Pantspisser) . . .
give me a break.

TmjUtah summed the situation well, above, saying, "The decisions made on the ground reflected the commander's/s' best effort to accomplish the mission at hand."

Bad stuff happens in war, good operators are lost.

Every loss is tragic, we grieve for every man and woman, every soldier, sailor, airman or Marine or civilian who has paid the ultimate sacrifice in these campaigns.

But shrill, conspiracy-laden, name calling screeds will not bring the men back, will not contribute to understanding the mechanics of the loss and will not honor the operators' legacy.

Take good care,

Posted by: Sandy Daze at September 4, 2011 8:50 AM

I like to clarify points and understand definitions before moving on ... so, I patiently await Ms. Barnhardt or St Thor's explanation of what they imagine as; a) the positive political endstate of "kicking the bejesus" out of ... someone / anyone in Afghanistan? And b)
"who" in Afghanistan, or in the GWOT, will provide that "swift, total, complete, and unconditional surrender" they say will equal success?


Posted by: Tyranno at September 4, 2011 11:49 AM

I agree that Ann Barnhardt is a hot head who shoots from the lip. But it rankles to find so many commenters here essentially saying that the military establishment, and high ranking officers in particular, are off limits to any criticism from civilians, especially those who have never served in the military.

You may find it hard to believe but some of us have considerable civilian rank and are quite able to exercise seasoned judgement when it comes to evaluating military matters. We may not always be right but we are not always wrong, either. The over riding point is that, as civilians, it is our right and, dare I say, our duty to question military decisions and you brass kissers can go to hell.

Posted by: mihail silo at September 4, 2011 2:54 PM

"Three, for those who know their history, SEALs, in their "blue" uniforms have been strategizing, planning and conducting successful, some say audacious, land operations since before Vietnam."

Give me a fucking break. If you're not talking combined operations, and you're not, then you're not sitting with the grownups.

Posted by: Casca at September 4, 2011 3:31 PM

I-RIGHT-I says:
Q:"who" in Afghanistan, or in the GWOT, will provide that "swift, total, complete, and unconditional surrender" they say will equal success.

A: The man or woman in a position of power and with the will to act who finally identifies the enemy as the Islamist Trillionairs backing the conflicts and the Global Political class who are in their pockets.

ME: I don't find an answer in your response to the simple question but Ok, accepting your premise... are we then to do as St Thor and AB desire and "kick the bejesus out of the "Islamist Trillionaires" too? And when we are done with that . . . what is the desired U.S. endstate achieved?

Posted by: tyranno at September 4, 2011 6:17 PM

Tyranno. The "wars" we are fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya have no specified military objective--just look at the murderous rules of engagement thought up by a bunch of bureaucrats who have never seen combat. George Bush calling for a "War on Terror" created the sloppy thinking and lack of objective in Afghanistan, just as Kennedy did in Viet Nam--even going so far as to condone the assassination of the head of state of an Ally, just as Clinton did in the Balkins, just as Obama did with his ridiculous assertion that our mission in Libya was to save "civilian" lives in a civil war. The number of convictions in Courts-Martial based on the simpering hand-wringer "rules of engagement" shows the lack of clear thought on the civilian "leaders" who have put our military in harms way. If you are going to war against those who harbor Tojo, Hitler, and Mussolini, then, if you want to stop organized terror attacks you should go to war against all those who harbor terrorists, period. The United States has been using the military in a half-assed way since Kennedy, and too many of the best have been killed for the benefit of politicians trying to play politically correct games for their own ego satisfaction.

Posted by: St. Thor at September 5, 2011 7:57 PM

StThor, Initially you were quite bold in your assertions.
"The Admiral is part of the butt-licking politically correct cohort of flag officers that have overrun the services since US Presidents and Secretaries of Defense decided that the US would no longer win wars,merely waste the blood of the best, bravest, and brightest in overseas extended skirmishes that solve nothing and attain no geopolitical end."
You offer your alternative, "better," course of action, and now all you do is equivocate by parading your tangential vanities! Why don't / can't you defend your original statement? What would your chosen COA solve? What positive geopolitical endstate would your COA achieve for the U.S.A. and the West?

Posted by: Tyranno at September 6, 2011 1:29 AM

Tyranno. Pointing out that rules of engagement drawn by bureaucrats with no combat experience, pointing out that none of the military incursions into Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya have a specific objective,pointing out that troops are caught in the catch-22 of being killed by the enemy or courtmartialed by their own country,pointing out that since Kennedy Presidents have put troops in harm's way with no specific objective is "parading...tangential vanities"? Clearly there is no basis for entering into any discussion with you.

Posted by: St. Thor at September 6, 2011 9:59 AM

So when the day after Ft. Hood sudden jihad syndrome treason, the CoS complains that it might hurts our efforts at diversity, AnnB has a good reason to think that the rot has set into the top brass. And when AnnB sees that our objectives in AfPak are obscured to damn near everyone, including the citizens who pay for it, it's fuel on the fire. And then the Admiral equates strategic and tactical assets. And then somebody else here says the strategic assets themselves can't or shouldn't distinguish, and rush to put themselves in harm's way without first doing some thinking and triage. I can then put her rant in perspective.

And don't quote Clausewitz. Clausewitz is for losers. How'd he work out for Prussia?

I see no good choices here. If we occupy Mordor indefinitely to prevent Sauron's return, we must husband our resources, and be smarter and fiercer than our enemies. If we leave with a stern warning: when Barad-Dur is rebuilt and the Nazgul once again cross the Anduin, we'll have to nuke it.

Posted by: John A. Fleming at September 6, 2011 11:44 PM

Aw, you sure you're not a liberal? All that take- my-ball-and-go-home stuff??
Sorry man, it is "parading tangential vanities" when you make a statement like you did, disrespectfully challengeing a good man's credentials and then don't support it. I'm a stickler for details. You said all that and, " ...you don't go into a fight unless you are willing to go all the way and kick the bejesus out of the opposition until they unconditionally surrender." Ok, I didn't disagree. I was trying to get you to clarify / extrapolate on what you meant. You made it sound so simple and easy. "kill 'em all and let God and Allah sort it out?" Go into Pakistan because they sponsor? Go into Iran because they sponsor? What? For me words have meaning and ideas have consequences.
Your words would lead to a certain endstate, both militarily and politically. I assumed you (other commentators here?) think these things through before making such vitriolic statements. If you are certain the Admiral is wrong, then what does "right" look like? Killing is a means to an end . . . what is the desirable endstate. (Doh, back to bad ol' Clausewitz)

Posted by: Tyranno at September 7, 2011 6:51 AM

JAF says, "And don't quote Clausewitz. Clausewitz is for losers. How'd he work out for Prussia?"

From a man who then goes on to quote Tolkein? I must have missed all of the Tolkien taught at every military college in the world for the last hundred years. (Here I go again!) So what then is the definitive reference for warfare, in your opinion?

Posted by: Tyranno at September 8, 2011 7:12 AM

Why do you think I love you (smile),

Posted by: GEORGE at February 3, 2012 7:41 PM