16 January 2012

and back, sadly, to strategy

I despair of the direction of western strategic thinking, not least of the difficulty in democratic systems, of being honest about war. The news this week of US marines in Afghanistan pissing on those they had killed was sad, but it was the simple-minded indignation of political comment that is tragic. I offered this comment on a story by Robert Fisk in The Independent.

Dennis ArgallCollapse: found the greatest horror in listening to the sanctimonious secretary of state mouthing her horror of how contrary this was to the principles these boys are supposed to have. (Thank you Andy Williams for stating the problem clearly.)
Surely some humility and some insight into the soul destruction of the implementation of strategic policy to achieve ego sustenance by righteous violence would be constructive. 
It's not what you say, Madame Secretary, it's what you do. Basil Liddell-Hart (greatest British strategic thinker of the twentieth century) in his last book attributed the horrors of the Spanish Civil War (1936-39) to the way the peninsular war with Napoleon (a mere six years, to 1814, wherein the word guerrilla entered the language of war) was conducted; he also ( in 1970) attributed the resurgence then of Middle East terrorism to Laurence of Arabia. 
For how long into the future will the planet's life be poisoned by the 'what you do' of such moral leadership as we in the 'enlightened and principled' world now have?
It's a bit odd, adding to discussion on the web, it is greatly disappointing to find so many people using pseudonyms. Change only comes when people use their own names in commenting on the serious, not just in the twitteration of life. Why are the young not out, in their own names?