Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Hard Truth

[posted by Callimachus]

The hard truth is, America has never been good at coordinating diplomatic, information, military and economic efforts ("DIME" being the acronym).

World War II U.S. military planning guru Gen. Albert Wedemeyer argued that we didn't do it well in that conflict. "Our failure to use political, economic and psychological means in coordination with military operations during the war also prolonged its duration and caused the loss of many more American lives," Wedemeyer wrote in 1958.

... Recommendations 74, 75 and 76 of The Iraq Study Group (ISG), published in November 2006, echo Wedemeyer. Here's Recommendation 75: The United States "needs to improve how its constituent agencies -- Defense, State ... Treasury, Justice, the intelligence community ... -- respond to a complex stability operation like that represented by this decade's Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the previous decade's operations in the Balkans. They need to train for, and conduct, joint operations across agency boundaries, following the Goldwater-Nichols model that has proved so successful in the U.S. armed services."

The Global War on Terror is a war for neighborhoods. The war will only be won by successful economic development and political evolution, supported by military and police action.

[Austin Bay writing at Strategy Page]

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