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Pentagon Malady: “Next-War-Itis”

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I was approached by Foreign Policy magazine back in January to pen one of their “Think Again” columns, this one focusing on the future of war.

The notion was, now that America has disengaged from Iraq and is doing the same with Afghanistan, the Pentagon’s thoughts invariably drift to future definitions of conflict amidst the ongoing budget battles.

Those future visions of war are how the various services rationalize their funding requirements in the fabled “out years” (beyond the current budget cycle) to Congress. Naturally, there’s a fairly fierce competition, in which each service attempts to paint the most compelling picture possible.

Remember when then-defense secretary Robert Gates complained about certain Pentagon elements catching “next-war-itis”? That’s when you’re allegedly engaging in this sort of futurology, when you should be focused on the current conflict.

Well, now that those conflicts are gone or being demoted, next-war-itis is kicking in, big time. That’s what this article I wrote sought to capture: the competition among the services to see which can come up with the most fabulously-gripping description of future war.

Check it out, here.

I interviewed a number of colleagues before attempting my write-up, to include the inestimable Mark Thompson. So let me thank those people now by citing their aid. They are Henry Gaffney, Gerald Mauer, Raymond Pritchett, Mark Lewellyn, Greg Jaffe, Alex Gallo, Shane Deichman, Randy Fullhart, Theodore Obenchain, Mark Safranski, Dave Dilegge, Henry Hendrix and Frank Hoffman.

7 comments
kellyjo5150
kellyjo5150

Since we were utterly unprepared for WW1 or WW2 or the Korean War or Vietnam it does behoove the nation's military leaders to try to be prepared.  Hundreds of thousands of Americans paid for that unpreparedness with their lives.  Our pilots flew bi-planes against the Japanese Zeros. Our soldiers faced Panzers with pathetic little tanks that couldn't fire a round that could penetrate the Panzers' armor.  Pentagon may do stupid stuff but I hope they are looking to the next war because there will be one.  "You may be done with war but war is not done with you."

kalanbates
kalanbates like.author.displayName 1 Like

the machine...created by wars that required it, now creates the wars it requires. - Joseph Schumpeter

scottkoen
scottkoen

The next war will come from within our own infrastructure, Just like the last with the WTC. All they have to do is put a nuke on a plane and detonate it off the coast and we are back to the stone age from the EMP blast.

juliangavilane1
juliangavilane1


just before I saw the draft that said  5949, I have faith ...that...my cousin had been realy erning money part-time at their laptop.. there dads buddy has been doing this 4 less than a year and a short time ago paid for the depts on there house and bought Mercedes-Benz S-class. we looked here, pie21.om


ToddWest
ToddWest

The "pentagon" is already well into the next "wars" # 1 is the illegal and deadly geo-engineering that is raping the world (#2 will prob be more middle east involvement, from Syria to Iran).  They party in the soup with their comrades in the intelligence agencies whom also are doping our skies and us with their geo-engineering "dust" which is poisonous.  If Time, and the American sheeple were not so infatuated with a romantic idea of what the military is/was, they'd demand someone come forward and fess up.  Doing illegal, clandestine weather modification is a major crime.  Look at your weather and skies, covered in chemicals.  Better wake up, the sickness this mess causes is raging, not to mention the weather is completely screwed up.  No heroes here in this "war".

Hadrewsky
Hadrewsky

@ToddWest 


You are such a brain damaged idiot I could parade you and the crap you say for entertainment. I would make a buck off of you as people laughed at you and your brain damage that has rendered you more ignorant and the average "sheep" American.... Low indeed.