14 July 2010

Actions v. Words

Dear fans, as I vacation in my Alpine retreat, don't think that I've completely abandoned you.  Verily, I bring you  good tidings, a link from Small Wars Journal, and some brief commentary.

In an article in today's SWJ, Captain Jonathan Pan bemoans the dichotomy between the rhetoric of American officials and the reality on the ground, reminding me of an old Army maxim, "a little less 'hooah', and a little more 'do-ahh".  Indeed, an inability to marry actions with words can make modest success seem like dismal failures.  The Israelis made this mistake during the 2006 Lebanon War, failing to live up to their threat to wipe Hezbollah from the face of the earth.

As Captain Pan notes, we're also guilty of the same in Marjah, where the "government in a box" failed to materialize as quickly as ISAF spokespeople claimed that it would.  (Certainly, part of the blame rests with the grossly unrealistic approach by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who expected to see thriving government within three months of the Marjah offensive--a process which can take years.)

Check it out, it's a great article, and it's gotten quite a bit of attention recently.

No comments: