11.26.14

Our Country Club War Planners

Posted in Bombing Paupers, Culture of Lickspittle at 12:47 pm by George Smith

From a couple weeks ago:

“Air power needs to be applied like a thunderstorm, and so far we’ve only witnessed a drizzle,” said David A. Deptula, a retired three-star Air Force general who planned the American air campaigns in 2001 in Afghanistan and in the 1991 Persian Gulf war.

The campaign has averaged fewer than five airstrikes a day in both Iraq and in Syria. In contrast, the NATO air war against Libya in 2011 carried out about 50 strikes a day in its first two months. The air campaigns in Afghanistan in 2001 averaged 85 daily airstrikes, and the Iraq war in 2003 about 800 strikes a day…

ISIS/ISIL/whatever-paupers-we’re-trying-to-bomb-today aren’t particularly vulnerable to American air power, reads the NY Times today.

A guerilla army without much in the way of an infrastructure in an already impoverished and war-torn region is something that doesn’t offer a target rich environment.

Hmmm, it’s our country’s fifty-year-old program. It’s tough to bomb others into submission when they have very little to lose, don’t hang around waiting for you to do it, and won’t quit even when things are blowing up.

From the Times, excerpts:

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. — The United States is shifting more attack and surveillance aircraft from Afghanistan to the air war against the Islamic State, deepening American involvement in the conflict and raising new challenges.


“When we target a nation-state, we’ve typically been looking at their capability for decades, and have extensive target sets,” said Maj. Sonny Alberdeston, the targeting chief here. “But these guys are moving around. They can be in one place, and then a week later, they’re gone.”

Just as the Pentagon flies its wartime fleet of Predator and Reaper drones from bases in Nevada and elsewhere across the United States, this rear headquarters of the Central Command’s air forces carries out the bulk of the work to analyze and select planned, or deliberate, targets that allied warplanes strike in Syria and Iraq.


[Critics] complain that the air campaign is flagging against an adaptive enemy. “We need to have more targeting capability than they have right now,” said Senator James M. Inhofe of Oklahoma, the senior Republican on the Armed Services Committee, who recently returned from Jordan, where several countries are using a base to fly combat missions against the Islamic State.

Targeting was also a major topic last week, when more than 200 military officials from 33 countries completed an unusual battle-planning conference at the Central Command’s headquarters in Tampa, Fla. The goal was “to synchronize and refine coalition campaign plans designed to degrade and defeat ISIL,” the command said in a statement.

That would be the> James Inhofe, one of the most stupid men in Congress, global warming denier and genuine full-time American villain.

Readers will notice that the war-planning and targeting is essentially done at the country club, Shaw AFB and at conventions held at Central Command HQ in Tampa, Florida.

The Times goes onto state the military is considering hiring “private contractors” to fly more spy drone and spy plane missions over Iraq and Syria.

It is also said the military continues to be obsessed with the decades old belief that by hitting the enemy’s petroleum resources, they have a winning strategy.

It did not work against North Vietnam. And ISIS/ISIL/whatever has even less, the military stymied by the small nature of its gasoline distilleries and the desire not to hit truck drivers, taken from the civilian populace, people just trying to make a living.

It’s hard to read without smirking. Oh rats! Bombing isn’t working like it should because we can’t hit enough of them! They won’t stay in one place.

America’s military leaders are appropriately described as apparatchiks of war tech, pushing the buttons and levers of military action from afar, men who never lose and are never replaced. Indeed, they cannot lose because they have nothing to lose in waging a remote war against an enemy with neither the resources or power to retaliate in any meaningful way against the force being called down on them.


From Pulitzer winner Malcolm Brown’s Muddy Boots and Red Socks: A Reporter’s Life:

“From the time of World War II, Americans have been brought up to believe that bombers can crack the toughest nut and bring any nation to its knees. Disney wartime cartoons portrayed air-power as well nigh invincible. But I don’t believe airplanes have ever been quite the wonder weapons we are often told, and although laser guidance and other innovations have improved bombing accuracy, an army of guerrillas is hard to hurt. When bombs were dropped on targets as dispersed as those in Vietnam, a prepared enemy could usually cope. I myself survived attacks by MiGs in Pakistan a couple of times by sheltering in shallow ditches…

One of the most impressive things I saw when I first visited Hanoi in 1973 … was the speed and apparent ease with which the North Vietnamese repaired bomb damage.

All the technology and money in the world can’t change it.

7 Comments

  1. Tom Paterson said,

    November 26, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    It’s the Forever War, George (you taught us that). You know you’ll go insane if you try to make sense of it.

  2. George Smith said,

    November 26, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    Remember, they’re asymmetric.

  3. Tom Paterson said,

    November 26, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    Imagine Sergeant Westmoreland and General Bilko.

  4. Tom Paterson said,

    November 27, 2014 at 3:40 am

    Insanification note: Westmoreland actually gave the nod to the Phil Silvers Show.

  5. George Smith said,

    November 27, 2014 at 9:58 am

    He was TIME magazine’s man of the year once, too. And also quite admired by the American public, the “silent majority,” for a long period, the picture of a general’s general.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=westmoreland%20time%20magazine%20man%20of%20the%20year&hl=en&gbv=2&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi

  6. Tom Paterson said,

    November 27, 2014 at 9:58 pm

    I went to check Westmoreland’s dates in Webster’s (11th Collegiate) and found he was missing from the list of Biographical Names … like, wow! Are you sure the US lost the Vietnam war? Perhaps the initial objectives were so unspeakable (profit and genocide as entertainment and stiffener) that the military were unable to claim the win. A kill ratio in Indochina of 1:100 (40,000:4,000,000) sure looks like a win; and Deng Xiaoping and his wretched little steps followed soon after in ’77.

  7. Tom Paterson said,

    December 3, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    58,272. I must not invent statistics. I must not …
    I am reading Nick Turse as a penance and have paid a small solacium.