The United States Army exists to fight – and win – America’s wars. No other mission the Army might ever be given can rival in importance the mission to fight and win. Consistent with their mission, the soldiers that populate the ranks of the United States Army are trained to fight, bleed and sometimes sacrifice their lives for country. Their training is focused on (or should be focused on) mastering the skills, individual and unit – squad, platoon, company, battalion and brigade – where battles are fought and wars are ultimately won.
America’s warriors – soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen – are expected to fight and win wars anywhere and anytime. It is the sacred and sworn duty of America’s military and civilian leadership at the highest levels to assure that the men and women who form the cutting edge of our armed forces, man the trenches, and slug it out with America’s enemies when war comes, are provided effective combat leadership, training and materials essential for the accomplishment of their mission. POTUS Biden, and his principal defense advisors, failed in the Afghan withdrawal to do their duties competently. There are no second chances or do-overs in war. Failure to plan and execute competently in war too often produces casualties, soldiers killed and wounded. Failure of leaders to competently support the fighters, especially during war, amounts to criminal dereliction of duty and should be punishable by court-martial.
There are two times when an army must be prepared and able to fight and win. Today and any other day the president says "go." That places a premium on always knowing what kind of war for which to prepare and who might be our adversary.
History and technology inform us generally regarding future wars, how they will be fought and the nature of weaponry involved. Although considered unlikely, it is possible America could be required to fight another World War II type "grunt" slugfest, fought with rifles, tanks and field artillery. Any war is undesirable and costly, with long-range consequences for the warring nations, their entire cultures and societies, especially youth. The "grunt" form of war among nations results, due to the unavoidable size and scope of the war, into substantial transformation of a nation from a peaceful state of national existence into a permanent state of military anxiety and perpetual involvement in struggles against political and ideological dragons throughout the world.
High-tech space wars are a possibility. Developments in satellite technology reveal the need for serious examination and study by defense planners of the now and future capabilities of space weaponry capable of threatening Earth targets and other space-based facilities. This is an area of scientific activity in which America must lead and not be forced to play catch-up at some future time of crisis.
Another form of high-tech warfare exists at a lower level of noise and violence but produces equally damaging and deadly results. Computer hacking has the potential for crippling America’s systems that support defense, government, education, business, finance, power, communications and other infrastructure systems that support necessary societal functions. America has experienced the harm that can be inflicted by computer hackers.
Drone wars are part of war now and will likely expand and increase in future conflicts. This is a weapon especially appropriate for use in combatting terrorism. Whatever the cost and effort required, America must maintain supremacy in drone technology and doctrine.
The war against terrorists and terrorism will continue. Should President Biden fail to act quickly, forcefully and decisively this could become America’s forever war. It is war is waged by a very brutal and evil gang of savages who call themselves religious followers of Islam. They kill because they love to kill and make no distinction among targets; military or civilian, old people or children, male or female, all are fair game to the terrorists. This is a difficult war to plan and fight because there are no rules for protecting the innocent and every place is vulnerable, hospitals and churches included.
A great danger that America faces in the years ahead, while Joe Biden remains president, resides in the proclivity of democrats to hack into defense funding whenever dollars are needed to finance “pork barrel” projects. This is criminally wrong.
President Biden has a sacred duty to provide for the safety and security of Americans. This is his first duty. He meets this obligation by ensuring wise treatment and use of America’s military – Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force. This is expensive. Biden should be made aware that every dollar that he and his team of democrats steal from defense funding to pay for “pork” is a dollar of safety and security stolen from the people of America – you, me, our friends and family.
President Biden recently boasted that for the first time in twenty years, America is not at war. He is wrong. The wars against terrorists, high-tech hackers and enemy satellite operators goes on and must be adequately planned and resourced.
President Biden should be reminded of what Plato, the 5th-century Athenian philosopher, said about war:
“Only the dead have seen the end of war.”
God bless the Grunt.
Felsher, a longtime Hattiesburg resident, is a retired Army colonel. He can be reached at email@example.com.